Left Out of Affirmative Action

Unequal Protection of the Laws

Often overlooked by many of the participants in this debate is that there are millions of kids from low-income families in dead-end schools—black, Hispanic, white, and Asian American—who never even think of applying to college.

In July 1998, in a Public Broadcasting Service dialogue on race moderated by President Clinton, Richard Rodriguez, a Mexican American journalist, was asked by Clinton whether, if Rodriguez were president of a university, he would want a "racially diverse" faculty and student body.

Clinton clearly didn't get the answer he expected. "I think," said Rodriguez, "you would start at the bottom of the social ladder. You would start at the first grade rather than at a graduate school to decide which ones of us get into law school. You would make sure America has a system of education that saved children in the first grade, because we lose [them] there." All children thus lost should be rescued.

To be continued.

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