Is affirmative action in university admissions legal, effective, and just?
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Since 1978, the “Law of the land” has been the decision handed down by Justice Lewis F. Powell, Jr., in Regents of the University of California vs. Bakke. In a 5 to 4 vote, Justice Powell ruled that while quotas are illegal, some consideration could be given to a university applicant’s race in order to promote educational diversity, which is viewed as a compelling government interest. Race, then, can be considered as a “plus” factor out of a number of admissions-relevant factors that are being considered.
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