May 22, 201
Affirmative Action in the Past, Present, and Future
President Lyndon B. Johnson said in a 1965 speech at Howard University, “You do not take a person who, for years, has been hobbled by chains and liberate him, bring him up to the starting line of a race and say, ‘you are free to compete with all the others,’ and still justly believe that you have been completely fair” (Calloway, 2010, p. 72).
From the end of the Civil War to the middle of the 20th century discrimination in various forms was the American way of life, there were no laws to protect racial minorities or women from biased employers. Employers could disregard a Black worker for a White worker and hold a better paying job for a White worker (ACLU, 2011).
Although racial and ethnic minorities have benefited from affirmative action policies, White women have benefited more than any other group (Wilson, 2008), present-day, White males are feeling the fallout of reverse discrimination because of the policies created to stop discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin in all aspects of employment (USlegal.com, 2011).
Throughout history women and minorities have been mistreated, denied an education, and barred from employment. After the Civil Rights Act of 1964 White women had an advantage over other women and minorities, there acceptance was easier for that already majority White men. Their educations were further along than that of minorities and the opportunities were easier to obtain than for minorities. Although White women have benefited more than any other race from affirmative action they do not believe that this policy was their stepping-stone to success. Racial tension was not present for White women, but women of race, and minorities in general had to overcome this obstacle to be considered equal.
Despite the benefits for all women, white women have not defended... [continues]
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