ACLU Statement on Harvard Admissions Trial

October 15, 2018 11:00 am

Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

BOSTON — Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) and Ed Blum’s latest crusade against diversity in schools goes to trial in Boston today, where Harvard University will defend its holistic admissions process in which it considers race as one of many factors.

Dennis Parker, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Racial Justice Program, issued the following statement in response:

“Affirmative action and a university’s right to set its own institutional goals are on trial today. SFFA has propagated the model minority myth and used Asian-Americans — who face racial stereotypes and discrimination as all minorities do — for political gain. We hope the court recognizes this spurious lawsuit for what it is: a vehicle for an anti-affirmative action agenda, not a righteous fight for equality.

“This case is not about educational equity or protecting the educational interests of a particular racial or ethnic group. It is instead just the latest attempt to advance the misguided arguments for race blindness, recycling the tired myth of a post-racial America. If you cannot acknowledge someone’s race, you risk not acknowledging them.”

The ACLU filed an amicus brief supporting Harvard, in which it argued that a whole-person, race-conscious admissions process furthers a university’s academic freedom to assemble a diverse student body.

Every month, you'll receive regular roundups of the most important civil rights and civil liberties developments. Remember: a well-informed citizenry is the best defense against tyranny.

The Latest in Racial Justice

ACLU's Vision

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.

Learn More About Racial Justice

Racial Justice issue image

The Racial Justice Program (RJP) fights to eradicate racial injustice in the U.S. and works to foster a society in which people of color and communities of color have full access to the rights and benefits of American society. Working with affected communities, RJP litigates, advocates, and educates to strike at the roots of racial injustice.