Clarence Thomas Hates Integration

3 comments July 9th, 2007at 11:19am Posted by Eli

NYT has an interesting story on Clarence Thomas’ opposition to integration and affirmative action:

When Justice Clarence Thomas provided a pivotal vote last month as the Supreme Court struck down school integration plans in Louisville, Ky., and Seattle, he suggested the concept of integration was inherently demeaning to black children because it implied they needed to mix with whites to achieve excellence.

(…)

Justice Thomas joined in a 5-to-4 majority on June 28 ruling that integration plans put in place by officials in Seattle and Louisville violated the Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection. In writing a separate concurrence, he dismissed the notion of the court’s minority that “racially balanced schools improve educational outcomes for black children.” He said that, “In reality, it is far from apparent that coerced racial mixing has any educational benefits, much less that integration is necessary to black achievement.”

Those views parallel many made by Justice Thomas going back to a comment he made to an interviewer in 1991, in which he said: “We are not beggars or objects of charity. We don’t get smarter just because we sit next to white people in class, and we don’t progress just because society is ready with handouts.”

As he has in the past, Justice Thomas last month argued that black children had achieved great success in what he called “racially isolated” schools before the landmark ruling, Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.

In the context of higher education, Justice Thomas said earlier that affirmative action programs cruelly deceived black students admitted to elite law schools under special programs who then found that they could not compete.

“These overmatched students take the bait,” he wrote in 2003, “only to find they cannot succeed in the cauldron of competition.”

(…)

Christopher Edley Jr., the dean of the law school at the University of California, Berkeley, said no one had seriously argued that just putting black children alongside white children made them learn better.

“The central claim for integration today is aspirational,” Mr. Edley said. “How do we build a society that is free of the poisons of color?”

Mr. Edley, who served in the Clinton and Carter administrations and on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, argued that “public education is the single best opportunity to promote understanding across our most dangerous divisions.” He said Justice Thomas’s views provided “shelter” for his fellow conservative justices who wanted to end all efforts at maintaining diversified schools.

Two things here that I find interesting.

1) Thomas says that black kids are plenty smart, and don’t need to go to white schools, and yet he also says that black students are “overmatched” when they get into law school via affirmative action. So which is it?

2) Thomas misrepresents or misinterprets the purpose of integration as being somehow academic rather than social. It’s as if he doesn’t even recognize interracial understanding as a worthwhile goal. I dunno, maybe he thinks we’ve already achieved it…

Entry Filed under: Judiciary,Racism,Republicans,Wankers

3 Comments

  • 1. MEC  |  July 9th, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    Thomas is the racial equivalent of a “queen bee”. He wants to believe that he reached the pinnacle of American society by his own efforts, and the correlary is that if anybody else is allowed to have help to achieve success, it cheapens Thomas’ achievement. Or he simply doesn’t want to share the pinnacle with other blacks, because it would make him less important.

  • 2. Eli  |  July 9th, 2007 at 11:46 pm

    I think he has some serious cognitive dissonance going on. He’s convinced himself that he made it on his own, and that integration and affirmative action somehow imply that blacks and minorities are inferior.

    The fact is, minorities are not inferior, but they *are* disadvantaged, in so many different ways that have absolutely nothing to do with merit.

  • 3. MEC  |  July 10th, 2007 at 9:32 am

    I think he just plain resents other blacks, because they don’t admire all he’s accomplished and all he’s done for the– oh, wait.

    Darrin Bell of Candorville is going after Clarence Thomas. I look forward to the subsequent strips.


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