UCLA = You See Lots of Asians?

posted by Dyske

From The Boston Globe, Do colleges redline Asian-Americans?

In California, where passage of a 1996 referendum banned government institutions from discriminating on the basis of race, Asians make up about 40 percent of public university students, though they account for only 13 percent of residents.

I actually thought “discriminating on the basis of race” was illegal everywhere. Did Affirmative Action legalize racial discrimination for college entrance? I guess I’ve been too ignorant of this.

“Some Asian-American students feel that they lost something by going to school at a place where almost half of their classmates look like themselves – a campus like UCLA. The students said they didn’t feel as well prepared in intercultural skills for the real world.’’

This is the lamest argument I’ve ever heard. “Some Asian-American students”? Where did they dig up these Asian-American students? Sounds like they looked really hard for a legitimate-sounding reason to justify racial discrimination against Asian-Americans. By the time these kids are at the top of their careers, they would be dealing with a lot of Chinese business people, so they are getting a taste of “the real world” all right.

I really don’t see why schools should use race as a criteria for acceptance. I’m surprised that they are allowed to. How do they do it in the first place? Do you have to write down your race on your college application form? Or, do they try to figure out their race from looking at their last names? (If so, it’s a good thing my daughter took my wife’s last name.)

I don’t think there is any legitimate reason for setting the bar higher for Asian Americans. I think it’s racism, pure and simple. Even if 90% of Harvard becomes Asian, what’s wrong with it? What exactly are the issues? “The real world” experience? That is nonsense. If the real world experience is their concern, they should be accepting a lot of stupid people too because everyone needs to learn how to deal with dumb people as well as smart people. “The real world” is filled with both.

I suspect that the reason why these prestigious universities do not want their schools to turn Asian is because they are concerned about their own image. They do not want their schools to turn into a Chinese school. When you are an academic, you get paid not by money but by prestige and respect. The last thing they want is someone saying, “Oh, you teach at a Chinese school.”

They are probably fearing that the brand image of their school would be ruined, if the majority of their school were to become Asian, and many white students and professors would start leaving for more posh and prestigious white schools; perhaps even to schools in Europe.

I think this is all about brand management.

62 Responses to “UCLA = You See Lots of Asians?”

  1. Frank Luo says:

    Sometimes the simplest of explanations is the most accurate.

    Why would a university prefer to not have as many Asians as the scores and applicants would indicate that they should have in their schools? Why would they in fact lower the quality of their student body as a whole, for the sole purpose of increasing the number of whites in relation to Asians enrolled?

    If you replaced “Asian” with another term in the article, what reaction might you have? Would the sentence:

    “Indeed, as Princeton’s Nieli suggests, most elite universities appear determined to keep their Jewish-American totals in a narrow range.”

    or

    “Indeed, as Princeton’s Nieli suggests, most elite universities appear determined to keep their African-American totals in a narrow range.”

    …raise any eyebrows or elicit any protests?

    As opposed to “intercultural skills” or “brand management”, perhaps the simplest explanation — that the view that America is a white country that should be controlled by whites for the benefit of whites, rather than a country that should be controlled by and benefit whoever has demonstrated the greatest merit, persists in many people in America, including some whose job it is to view all applicants on an equal basis, and that this is being tolerated institutionally — would be more accurate.

  2. Sal Paradise says:

    Back in the early 1900s, Jewish immigrants had the gall of kicking ass, taking names, and having the academic chops to get into Ivy League institutions.

    This, of course, could never do. So instead of just relying on intelligence, they started looking at extra-curriculars, and references, and transcripts, and whatever else they could use to justify not letting the Jews in.

    It was a load of crap then with the Jews, and it’s a load of crap now with the Asians. It has nothing to do with smarts, but exactly like you said, with Brand Management. You want to make sure the rich Harvard graduates helping create the networking and donating money continue to believe in the Harvard brand, otherwise you lose a lot of the reputation and networking power you’ve spent so much time building by keeping the Jews out.

    Don’t worry too much, higher education will go the way of the Dodo in its current incarnation within the next 50 years.

  3. michelle says:

    I’m Asian, but I don’t find that racially discriminating. If the article used another race in the article, it wouldn’t make much of a difference either.

  4. Dyske says:

    @michelle,

    The issue isn’t whether it’s “racially discriminating” or not. The article is saying they are indeed racially discriminating. The question is whether that’s good or bad.

  5. Asian Market Girl says:

    who can answer if its good or bad? depends on who you ask

  6. Lana says:

    I am glad I have found this site. And in all honesty, any form of racial discrimination is incorrect or a ‘bad’ thing.

    Not to stereotype here (which I may fail to achieve), as a whole, the Asians in the US (and over here in Europe) tend to perform at a higher standard than many of the other ethnic minorty groups or even the majority (white people) .

    I feel that the issue here should not be ‘why are there so many Asians and what can we do to get rid of them?’ but ‘why – indeed – are there so many Asians getting into such high performing universities and what can we learn from them?’

    I have alot of respect for the way Asian parents bring up their children and think that there is clearly some sort of element (a secret ingredient if you like) within the Asian community that the rest of us are lacking. That is not to say that the rest of society is pathetic and should bow down and hail the Asian community. But I believe that we could learn from Asian culture – and the philosophy behind it – and incorporate it into our own to better ourselves.

    I think that this is just a total power trip. An attempt to maintain white supremacy which is being threatened by the rising success of the Asian community.

  7. Benni Trusac says:

    I feel the real issue is looking at race at all in admitting anyone anywhere. But schools do it, they want xx number of xx “races” to look like they are somehow good and fair organizations.
    They should just look at the transcript and any requested documentation (often of intent or personal history; and their relevance to higher education) [other method, such as interviews for smaller schools are also fine]. The point is people shouldn’t base the value of an individual on the color of their skin/hair/eyes or other physical characteristics

    What i find odd is the thought process of limiting people based on their ethnicity is somehow a good thing.

  8. Soso says:

    Written by a dumb american that’s for sure. See percentage wise, not population wise. If Asians are 14% of population it does not mean the University students Asian can not be 40% of the total STUDENT population. See the difference bush-ass-kisser?

  9. Deanna says:

    I realize this was not the main point of the post, but this line was too good not to acknowledge. “If the real world experience is their concern, they should be accepting a lot of stupid people too”

  10. Anisa says:

    @Lana: It’s called hard work. Even though many Asian children aren’t born as the stereotypical child prodigies that many people perceive them to be, they still work hard towards getting an education. I think it’s people who think that just because they aren’t born smart, they believe that they can’t succeed, so they start becoming lazy. But in Asian culture, despite not having the smarts as everyone else, as long as you work hard, you can succeed, learn a lot, and get good grades.

    And then there’s all the hardships that many Asian countries go to and still go to. Also the fact that if children don’t do well in school, it will be a huge disappointment to their families. And sometimes the disappointment extends beyond immediate families, reaching even extended families. And soon the whole gossip will start.

  11. Lana says:

    @Anisa

    I totally agree with you. I know being Asian doesnt guarantee genius, but I think that we can learn from their work ethic.

  12. Vivian says:

    I’m Asian and I find this extremely frustrating. I work my butt off at my grades and everything to get into a good college. While another race who has lower grades and didn’t work as hard as I did has an equal chance at getting accepted. The whole real world argument is complete crap and I believe it is just brand management, unfortunately.

  13. Wonderfish says:

    I looked into this article b/c I’m going to attend UCLA next year, and I am straight-up Asian.

    It’s extremely difficult to find scholarships that I can apply for (and legitimately hope to have a chance of getting). I find this phrase in almost every scholarship application: “Preference is given to underrepresented races”.

    Whenever I find that phrase, I mutter “dammit, not again”, curse myself for not being Hispanic, African-American, or Pacific Islander, and close the browser window.

  14. MixedMartialArtist says:

    ya, it is a form of racism(I was a molecular cell biolgoy major at UCBerkeley).. to keep brand management as a white,non-asian university …it’s also because they want an “equal” distribution that matches national population levels (60% white, 20% Hispanic, 12% black, 5% Asian, 3%+ other) but when it comes down to just grades & test scores, Asians havve tthe highest test scores & GPA so now dominate college admissions

    Also, private universities have a “AFFIRMATIVE ACTION FOR WEALTHY & ALUMNI” program known ‘legacy admissions’ which gives admittance for alumni & people who give thousands/millions in donations (like Meg Whitman donating millions to Princeton & thus all her sons are granted admission there (despite the lack of qualifications of their children)

  15. Sal Paradise says:

    And by the way Dyske, if you are interested in race and college admissions, you should read Regents of the University of California v. Bakke:
    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=US&vol=438&invol=265

    Basically, it’s illegal to use quotas when admitting people to college (you can’t take a fixed number of black students — that’s unconstitutional), but you can view being a certain race as a net positive and grant ‘bonus points’ to increase the chance of admission. That was in 1978.

    In 2003, University of Michigan went under fire for doing the point-based admissions (with a significant boost for black applicants) in these two cases:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grutter_v._Bollinger
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gratz_v._Bollinger

    Basically, on a 150 point scale, you needed 100 for automatic admission. A perfect SAT was 12 points, and being black (or other select minorities) was worth 20 points. You can see why people may have gotten a bit miffed.

    Anyway, if you want to learn more about the history of race-based college admissions, those cases are a good place to start.

  16. Cate says:

    As a student coming from a predominantly white area, I ended up at Waterloo – where I had the opportunity to learn about a myriad of cultures, not just from my classes but from the other students too. I went from being a small town girl who was aware of other races to a member of a global community.
    `
    I’d argue that UCLA is not only hurting the Asian students they don’t accept, they’re hurting the other young people they choose instead. I would never have considered seeing the world or writing the HSK when I graduate. Maybe it is bad for their “brand” but it’s good for their students to meet different people.

  17. Stan says:

    Hey, don’t blame this garbage on white people. I didn’t get a news letter where we all got together and planned to limit Asians in schools. This is all the policy of “progressives”. They can’t stand people that do well and excel on their own, period. As a white guy I enjoyed the competition I had in my biology classes at the University of Wisconsin between me and these two Chinese guys. We constantly bounced around between the top 3 scorers on every exam and paper. I probably would have slacked off more if it wasn’t for the competition.

    Letting people in to a university based on ethnicity over achievement is lunacy only “progressives” can some up with.

    Besides, being Asian doesn’t make you a genius automatically, hard work and study is still required. I’ve got 2 Korean nephews, one is a gifted kid and one is about as ordinary as you can get. Jury is still out on my niece since she’s only 18 months. I sure as hell don’t want their opportunities limited because of their genetic background and to have all their efforts ignored.

  18. Jake says:

    .Quote: “By the time these kids are at the top of their careers, they would be dealing with a lot of Chinese business people, so they are getting a taste of “the real world” all right.”

    You are right, many Chinese students form bubbles and networks with other Chinese students, because it is easier to be successful when you have a niche market that nobody else can get into, and that is exactly the problem Universities have with allowing disproportionate cultural/racial levels to exist; they don’t want people thinking a school is an inside or outside club.

    It’s also not a matter of fair or unfair. After the “affirmative action” scare, some statistics emerged that said students with affirmative action did just as well as students who got into school based on “merit.” It may just mean that in order to get into a good school, a student has to prove that they are a valuable individual in their community, or in their field of study, and that would definitely even the playing-field for all people.

    But, this won’t happen anytime soon, because schools gain attention by being arbitrarily selective, like basing admittance on a test that has no bearing on academic success(SAT).

    In the meantime, UCLA is becoming another nice middle-class Asian-dominated neighborhood, and people should be aware that this is a significant cultural issue, with significant cultural implications, especially when there is no empirical way of proving that said group of people really deserves to be there more than the other group, based on our current system of admissions policies in the state of California.

  19. Dyske says:

    The idea that the Asian Americans (particularly the Chinese) form bubbles because they want to, is a myth born out of ignorance. I say this with a sense of self-criticism because I myself used to think this until I read “Strangers from a Different Shore” by Ronald Takaki, and learned about the history of Asian Americans. The European Americans systematically blocked the ernest efforts by Asian Americans to integrate into the American culture. Bitter that they were denied the equal opportunity to achieve their “American Dreams”, they put all their hopes on education for their next generation. For the first generation of Asian Americans, it was almost like a form of revenge; like “We’ll show you.” Instead of channeling their anger into something destructive, they sublimated it into studying. So, if the top universities of this country get filled with Asian Americans, they deserve to be there.

    When we use the expression “form bubbles”, we tend to think of a protective bubble where the pressure is built from within to expand. The Asian American bubbles were formed much like the bubbles that form in water where the pressure from outside forced them to form bubbles instead of getting absorbed into water.

    “American culture” is an elusive concept. So, when you say “significant cultural issue”, we don’t know what it means. For most people, it means that UCLA is not conforming to the European, particularly British, heritage. If the culture of UCLA was very much like that of Cambridge University, I don’t think anyone would complain, which means that most people assume that the American culture should be Western-centric. Given that the vast majority of universities in this country are Western-centric, I do not see anything wrong with UCLA becoming Eastern-centric especially because it’s located in the closest state to the East where many Asian immigrants landed in the past, and have made significant contributions.

  20. Frank Luo says:

    Elite schools are SUPPOSED to be an “inside club” for people who are smart AND study hard as hell. The sense of entitlement that two generations of self-indulgent everyone- wins- type of child raising has instilled in far to many Americans has rotted the country’s work ethics from within like a cankerworm eating a rose, to borrow a phrase from Blake, merging with racism to become the sentiment that drives this sort of outright lies to justify what is ultimately simply an effort to ensure that a majority of America’s best resources are reserved for white Americans.

    Heavily influenced by Confucian ethics and two millenia of standardized testing being the gauge for accomplishments in society, East Asians prize academic achievement above almost everything else. Asian parents often go to extraordinary lengths to sacrifice for their children. I have known Chinese kids whose parents waited tables and sewed garments for a few cents a shirt collar, 12 to 14 hours a day, six or seven days a week, who would scrimp those pennies and buy their kids brand new computers to do their junior high school homework with — and this was in the early 90′s when an office computer would be two thousand dollars. Few other cultures push as many of their members to go to such lengths to achieve academically, and the result is that more of Asians realize more of their academic potential than any other ethniciy.

    But instead of looking at this kind of work ethic and willingness to devote themselves to academic study as something that America desperately needs because it is now competing with all the rest of the world which has recovered from the COld War and in some cases even the aftereffects of WWII and other conflicts (for example the Bosnian conflict), people who have failed to match the accomplishments of smart kids who also push themselves really hard now bitch about “enclaves” and “bubbles” in blatant defiance of the fact that MAINTAINING THE LEVEL OF WHITES AT A SCHOOL IS ITSELF THE EXPLICIT EFFORT TO CREATE A BUBBLE, just because the kids who are outperforming them happen to have a different skin color; never mind that they might be born in America, even to the third or fourth generation.

    This is not just racism. It’s being a sore loser on top of being a racist. And it is pathetic and ugly in the worst ways, because beyond racism, it shows how short sighted these people are — instead of training those who have proven their capacity and devotion to academia and harnessing their accomplishments for the good of the country, these people are allowing their racism and jealousy to shortchange everyone to satisfy the self-important, self-indulgent racist sentiments of mediocre students, simply because they are white.

  21. Neuropath says:

    The argument for brand maintenance, or even simple sinophobia both seem plausible. I would assume the motivation is really some amalgamate of all of these factors.

    “Some Asian-American students feel that they lost something by going to school at a place where almost half of their classmates look like themselves – a campus like UCLA. The students said they didn’t feel as well prepared in intercultural skills for the real world.’’

    Okay well first, “look like themselves”? Seriously? That was their actual gripe? He is directly quoting these “Some Asian-American students”? I simply don’t believe that. I don’t have any qualification for why. Other than that, these are apparently,”some” of UCLAs best and brightest, and their overall #1, PUT IT IN THE ARTICLE concern, is what their classmates looked like. Thats hardly an issue of culture at all is it? “You know I interact with Asian-Americans every day.. and its not their customs, history, or the entirety of their diverse and unique belief philosophies that I struggle most to know and understand, its simply getting used to their faces.” Does that really sound like an issue of culture? I assume that was meant to be used as vibrant or illustrative language, similar to my imaginary quote (which is sarcastic mockery, please don’t take those as genuine feelings) above, but its certainly tasteless and underhanded to propose that is a feeling shared among a large portion of Asian-American student body, and again.. I don’t believe it.

    As for acting on it, and institutionalizing discrimination as if its in the interest of ( whether they asked for it or not ) the students in question, is abhorred to me. Whether or not the 13% Asian population values formal education to a degree that results in them making up 40 or even 90% of the public university student body is of no administrative concern what-so-ever, it does not benefit the quality of education, efficiency of the systems in place which provide that education, or cost of maintaining them, and is therefore, completely unnecessary, before we even mention the fact its simply skirting the constitution by way of using a creative number system as opposed to a plainly understandable one.

    Making this a question of cultural work ethics seems unnecessary entirely. We’ve no way of actually knowing what would happen if were all the requirements stacked in a different fashion, if any other group of people needed higher scores than Asian-Americans to attend, would they put the numbers up? Its very hard to make those kind of judgments without the actual role reversals. Don’t demonize the efforts of one cultural to highlight the efforts of another. The goal is achieve relatively peaceful equality right? If the goal is “Fill every school with only Asians to teach White people a lesson.” Then I’m not sure I would agree with it at all.

  22. Frank Luo says:

    >If the goal is “Fill every school with only Asians to teach White people a lesson.” Then I’m not sure I would agree with it at all.

    Since I said nothing of the sort, you are the only one who is making that statement. Perhaps you might enlighten us as to how your being unsure whether or not you would agree with yourself contributes to the conversation.

    But strawman arguments aside, there IS a lesson for Americans to learn, and that is privilege and place in the world must be earned and maintained by hard work. America has learned this lesson before, for example when the Soviet Union put a man into space first. But the self-indulgent entitlement mentality — which many Americans attribute to the poor, especially those in minorities, but which has pervaded American culture at every level and demographic — has, along with other factors, eroded the value placed upon hard work and merit in American society, combining with the antiintellectual streak in American culture to discourage academic accomplishment, and combining with racism to create this sick belief that certain students should be refused admittance because of their ethnicity, despite all of their accomplishments.

    Perhaps America will (re)learn this lesson, but perhaps not — a great many Americans will still state with a straight face that ethanol and ethanol mixes are simply impractical as a fuel for automobiles, when every single ground-based internal combustion motor vehicle in Brazil runs on some combination of ethanol and gasoline, a good number running entirely on ethanol. Brazil has already surpassed the United States in this regard, and China will surpass America in other alternative energy solutions in a matter of years, if it has not already.

    Finally, the SATs DO predict academic success, and so do GPAs. Those that claim otherwise are either simply lying to themselves to make themselves feel better about their crap scores or to justify their discriminatory practices:

    http://www.mindingthecampus.com/originals/2008/10/by_peter_salins_one_of.html

  23. Neuropath says:

    It is very easy to dismiss an argument as a straw man, when you deny implying anything of the sort in your opening statement. Yet it seems clear to me, you knew exactly to whom and what I was referring. So perhaps it is an underhanded way of questioning what your position actually was, but your subsequent dismissal of it now makes it clear that was unfounded. So in terms of the conversation, it clarifies, at least to some degree the intent of your previous statements ( to me ). I haven’t actually argued against position Y, I’ve only questioned whether or not it is the same as position X. Anyway that sort of thing could get complicated quick, suffice it to say, I wanted to question your motives, I took a round about way of doing so, and you cleared it up quickly. I hope thats justification enough for you, or whoever you meant by ‘us’. Potentially everyone.

    You will get no argument from me on whether or not Americans have many lessons to learn. In fact I agree with the majority of your statements. Particularly the notion of an strong anti-intellectual streak in American culture becoming more rampant and pervasive as time goes on. I might not point to this a direct influence ( and I’m not sure you have either ) on the happenings at UCLA ( and other colleges ), but I can see clearly how its effect on American scholarship would trickle into these sort of scenarios. I also feel its true our work ethic has declined steadily over the years. I think, this is related directly to something inconsistent with our perception of time, or really our human time-lines. Americans have started to pick up on the idea that work stops. Its entitlement I agree, but its also the the idea that these things we deserve should all arrive promptly on schedule. We got the weather report in 2 left clicks, so clearly engineering a high-rise can’t be more than what? A thousands more clicks? Helicopter, Mansion then I’m done. By obscuring the actual work behind these things, I think we’re slowly, or even quickly devaluing the experience of doing them. Viewing our lives a product which will eventually be complete, rather than a series of experiences in which we participate. Its all slightly reminiscent of an empire in decline. We’re habitually commemorating our great works without actually carrying on with them ( our country simply isn’t even that old ) , and this has somehow trickled down into our individual lifestyles. “I made it through highschool, now gimme a helmet with a massive plume and put gold on my shield.”

    Now the reason for my questioning of your motivations while I agree primarily with what you recognized as faults in American culture. Is that all these arguments seemed to me, to be proposed as reasons why discriminatory practices should be eliminated. You went on to say

    “But instead of looking at this kind of work ethic and willingness to devote themselves to academic study as something that America desperately needs because it is now competing with all the rest of the world… ”

    I thought that this statement in particular implied that somehow, you intended for a policy of school application equality to teach ‘a lesson’ of work ethics to Americans as a primary cause. A motivation which if you had actually intended I couldn’t agree with. I felt it should be done, first, because I feel equality is a basic human right. Second because it is what I think the original intent of our laws actually was. And third, maybe most selfishly, because when the roles are reversed its a human right I would prefer not to have to struggle against as the Asians have had to. Eliminating discriminatory practice is something that should be done regardless of motivation granted, fair is afterall fair. But not as a method by which to punish Americans for their mistakes, as I’m now sure you would agree. But as a recognition of the right all people have to pursue happiness ( If you agree with that sort of thing.. I happen to ).

    I see now, as you have made it plain to me that these arguments were actually illustrative of a reason for these discriminatory practices in American culture. I hope you can see where I might have picked up on that implication of alternative motive, even if it wasn’t intended at all.

    As for the SAT and GPA statements. I’m unsure if this was meant as a retort for something I said ( I imagine this was a response to an argument Jake made ), but I do feel SAT and GPA scores are highly suggestive of academic success. I would say they could definitely be improved, there are certainly some people who could be academically successful who simply aren’t making it through, but I don’t see how that could statistically alter the admissions by the type of margins these points caps are. It seems to me completely socially irresponsible to try and point to the test as flawed, and propose weighting it artificially as some sort of solution. You wouldn’t fix a horses broken leg by sewing an extra one on. Particularly if that third leg prevented 40% or the owners from riding it. That analogy went out of control.. I apologize.

  24. Kirby Diel says:

    Fantastic ghoulish content … genuinely fitting for the season and impressivly damn exciting. many for sharing!Possess a great evening, Brown

  25. Frank Luo says:

    I accept the apology, but please spare all of us the semantic analysis. Complicating the matter is useless and meaningless, since it would not change in any way, shape, or form the fact that I said nothing of the sort. Furthermore, I did NOT claim that you took the position nor even imply it — in fact, I specifically noted the fact that you said you were not sure if you would agree with the position. That being the case, just as I had already stated, that is a position you and you alone proposed, which you then said you are not sure if you would agree with, despite your effort to distance yourself from it using an if clause. I am not looking for a flame war, but nor would I have a statement attributed to me that I did not make.

    Towards further clarification, I have never said nor implied that top universities should be filled with Asians — in my view, deliberately packing them with Asians would be as racist as deliberately limiting the number of Asians. My point is and has always been that top universities — in fact, in my belief, ALL universities — should be filled with the best academic performers selected from among their respective applicant pools. The fact that Asians tend to be, disproportionately, excellent academic performers is what mainstream America needs to learn a lesson from — the work ethic and the value placed upon education and academic achievement that has created that performance.

    The point about SAT scores and GPAs was directed at Jake. On the other points we are mostly in agreement.

    The thing about race-based admissions policies is that ultimately it is a zero sum game, where for every candidate with inferior scores admitted, a candidate with superior scores is made to suffer because of his/her race. This point has been debated extensively in the various arguments about affirmative action over the decades, and I do not feel comfortable commenting on the validity of the arguments without further research. However, I can confidently argue that Asians are not subject to (at the very least least) the vast majority of arguments for affirmative action, in the sense that non-Asians deserve to be given preference despite inferior performance, since there were no Asian plantation slave owners, there were no Asian slave traders, persons of no ethnicity was interned during WWII other than the Japanese, and the Chinese were legally discriminated against in immigration law until 1965, more than a full century after the original Emancipation Proclamation. What’s more, redlining and other discriminatory practices were carried out against Asians as much as any other ethnicity, which is why Asians ended up with the “enclaves” they ended up with, because it was difficult if not impossible for them to buy into other neighborhoods.

    Despite all of this — that Asians as a minority were strongly discriminated against and hampered — rather than being given preferential or even simply equal treatment, they are now being actively and openly discriminated against in the admissions policies of certain universities. The argument for affirmative action based on the effort to combat poverty among specific ethnicities does not even make any sense because there are plenty of poor Asians, and these policies say nothing about the relative wealth of the Asians involved, only their ethnicities.

    Since the various arguments for affirmative action based upon the grounds of the moral debt owed to those descended from slaves have no bearing where Asians are concerned, and these policies do not distinguish wealthy Asians from poor Asians, there are simply no morally defensible reasons for discriminating against Asians in this manner. Furthermore, given that the Asians are being discriminated against 1) as a collective ethnicity and 2) because of their superior academic performance, whatever these universities choose to call this practice, it would still simply be putting lipstick on the pig that can perfectly accurately be called a racist practice arising from the inferior performance of other ethnicities, since it is a simple, logical inference that if Asians perform better, the other ethnicities logically must be performing worse in comparison, giving rise to my “sore loser” comment.

    Something has created that difference in performance, and rather than studying what that something is, the response of simply ignoring it and admitting candidates with inferior performance will ultimately make America a less competitive nation and economy. That is the lesson to be learned, and it will be, one way or the other, because if it is not, America will lose its place in the world, and probably much faster than it would expect, much as the Roman, Spanish, and British empires lost theirs. Whether or not falling behind is what it will take to jolt mainstream America from its idiotic fantasy that everyone’s child is equally gifted and that everyone can win in soccer games, and whether or not, having fallen behind, America can regain its place in the world, are things that we will know soon enough, I would say in less than a generation.

  26. Neuropath says:

    Hi again Frank Luo

    If there are discrepancies between the meaning I have distilled from a series of statements and their actual intended meaning, then I feel they’re worth addressing. I would expect any semantic argument to be meaningless to you, as you obviously understood what you meant in the first place. However it’s clear I’d interpreted something in a way that wasn’t intended. Whether that is because of my own foolishness or otherwise, is likely irrelevant after you state it false, but I feel the semantics are the key to making plain my line of thinking. So it pains me to hear you condescend regarding them. I don’t want to be interpreted as being malicious either. Nor do I feel I’m incapably ignorant. So I made clear my line of thinking so any misinterpretation could be distilled.

    To be absolutely clear, I definitely overstepped and simplified your argument in straw-man fashion, with my comment “Fill every school with only Asians to teach White people a lesson.” But I did not intend to propose that was literally your argument. What I meant to do, and clearly failed badly. Was to suggest that if this was in some form the motivation behind the argument ( yours or otherwise ), then I am opposed to it. However, this was based on an misguided interpretation of your original statements. This all unfolded haphazardly, and I apologize again for any hurt or damage I might have, or did cause to your reputation. I’ll state for anyone else’s sake, any latent racially motivated message I thought I interpreted from Frank Lou’s statements is a result of my own misunderstandings and not his intent at all.

    Please know that it is far from my intent to waste your time, or argue pointlessly with you. I don’t interpret you defending your position or clarifying a statement as an attempt at a flame war either. It is of course what somebody would hope for. I would say its even a mark of character to have enough faith in what you are saying to back it up so readily. I’ve appreciated your civility through the entire process.

    I agree that ignoring the discrepancies in academic performance in favor of discrimination will result in less successfulness for America overall, at least for a prolonged period. I think really, any difference in work ethic stems simply from the circumstance of fighting from the disadvantaged position. ( For clarity, I mean the the disadvantage of the long institutionalized discrimination perpetrated against most immigrants to America and in this case the Asian-Americans in specific, historic or otherwise. ) There may be as you have mentioned briefly, some cultural motivations, but on the whole I think they are really secondary to humanities ability to adapt to its circumstance. Asians in America have had to work harder to secure their futures in America than is fair or rather frequently even legal, and certainly harder than is defined as appropriate by our society meant to be built on the fundamental ideal of equality. However I’m not sure fear of losing our world leadership is motivationally required. What its important to realize is that the ideals on which ‘we’ ( people who were apparently smarter than us and yet lived in a time with fewer academic resources ) founded our country, tend toward a scenario where we don’t lead the world, but progress with it. Whether or not learning that lesson results from academic and thus economic calamity for America, hinges on us understanding that isolationism and discrimination makes this process a wave form. With great troughs and crests of success and decline. This I believe is primarily what you have said already. Where I might differ from you perhaps is in the belief that this should be some motivator to America for the removal of the discriminatory practices. I feel its simply in the act of striving for any form of superiority that we fail. I feel ( a word I use to show this is opinion rather than an established fact, not one to invalidate my own writing ) the current admissions scoring superiority observed in Asian-Americans, is merely their endeavoring to be achieve equal success. While the discriminatory machinations we’ve put in place to ‘correct’ them, are legitimate attempts to maintain advantage. Until our motivators for equality, are belief in equality, we’ll simply fail again and again to maintain consistency in Academic, Scientific, Economic, or Any, endeavors. That is not to suggest you don’t believe equality should be the motivation, just that entirety of my conclusion, might differ from yours. I should mention that I mean equality via potential. Not as you mentioned the idea that “everyone can win in soccer games”.

  27. Anon says:

    I think its worth looking at the difference between undergraduate programs and graduate programs in this case. It is my guess that graduate programs will have the more purely merit based admissions while undergraduate programs have programs that are more racially biased. And while stating programs discriminate based on race raises all kinds of red flags, it might not be as sinister as we are making it out to be.

    I believe undergraduate programs (at least in the United States) are more about providing a specific experience to students, while graduate programs are about simply transferring information. As such, having a 90% asian undergrad population would necessarily change an undergraduate program more than it would a graduate program, and thus anyone directing an undergrad program who was interesting in providing a more multi-cultural experience to their students would have little choice than to discriminate based on race. Note that I am not saying they want their students to have an experience more akin to the “real world,” only that it be more multi-cultural.

    Of course, undergrad programs strive to be the best academically. However, I think these undergrad directors know that a real top program is not 100% about academics (or at least how one does on a given set of tests). It’s about producing people that are educated in all senses of the word, not simply producing those who are extremely highly skilled (that should be saved for grad school). Striking a balance between pure academics and everything else I would think would be very hard.

  28. Frank Luo says:

    @ Neuropath:

    I’m not angry at you. I just wanted to make sure my position is clearly presented. I do appreciate the effort you have put into this discussion and hope that more discussions can be had in this manner.

    The real issue here, to me, is the boneheaded practice — and the underlying attitudes and beliefs — that is lowering the standard of education as well as achievement in the country I am a citizen of.

    @ Anon:

    It might be worth it. Then again, it might not. The issue I am concerned with is not college itself but a general lowering of standards, towards which issue university admissions is more of a symptom and an act that enables and legitimizes the deterioration of academic standards which has taken American antiintellectualism to new heights. Consider Tom Friedman’s recent column:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/21/opinion/21friedman.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

    …and the statistics cited — the deterioration of academic standards is systemic and not unique to universities or undergraduate programs. I believe that this is a cultural issue that is aggravated by other social factors such as the mushrooming of the concentration of wealth to the very, very top, simultaneous to the reduction of taxes on the very rich to levels that are slowly forcing the transfer of burdens previously borne by the government for the public good to the middle class, whose stagnant or declining real wages cannot support them. The fact that schools around the country are asking parents to buy things such as cleaning supplies and toilet paper for their children’s schools is among the most visible symptoms of this problem.

    The focus of America’s culture has shifted away from excellence and science. It needs to right itself if it is to retain its leading position. So far I see precious little signs of that happening. Instead, I see practices such as those mentioned in the article enabling and legitimizing the shift, and furthermore add insult to injury by attempting to justify the use of a fundamentally racist policy through absurdly weak arguments. This combination of things is what I am really angry about.

  29. Frank Luo says:

    Heh.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/07/education/07education.html

    From the article:
    ========================
    “We have to see this as a wake-up call,” Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in an interview on Monday.

    “I know skeptics will want to argue with the results, but we consider them to be accurate and reliable, and we have to see them as a challenge to get better,” he added. “The United States came in 23rd or 24th in most subjects. We can quibble, or we can face the brutal truth that we’re being out-educated.”
    ========================

    Both President Obama and others also brought up the space race against the Soviets as the comparison. Hmm. Only a couple of months after I did so this time. Some people are catching on after all.

    But let’s see if the country as a whole can learn from it, or will the people bury their heads in the sand and vote for teabaggers who are funded by billionaires who would not stop pushing until every person in America paid for their own K-12 education and all other government services because to do so costs the billionaire population too much taxes.

    Some people would rather slowly strangle their own and their kids’ futures in this way because they cannot accept that the world as a whole requires work from them before they can tout their accomplishments and have a certain standard of living, go to certain schools, and be told they deserve to be in the top schools despite inferior performance, or are maybe just too dumb or too prejudiced to see and recognize the truth.

    Again, we’ll see what happens within a generation. Until then, it’s America’s decision how it wants to live — by going into hock to buy Japanese cars and Wiis and Chinese everything else, or by educating as many students as possible according to their best abilities, to regain its supremacy and to buy things with wealth that is actually created from creating things people want, rather than just shifting money around and sending jobs overseas, all the while justifying their prejudices with idiotic platitudes that claim that the lowering of standards actually benefits the student body and society.

    It will happen soon enough.

  30. elbow says:

    State schools are funded by every member of society and thus have more obligations than just admitting the best students they can find. If they are penalizing certain races in the interests of fighting institutional racism or trying to bring educational opportunities to every cross section of society I have no problem with it. In the 90s white students were bitching and moaning when they didn’t get into their reach schools due to affirmative action, now apparently asian students are doing the same.

    I enthusiastically approve of a bit of discrimination against whites and asians in public school admissions if it helps to address the ongoing problems that blacks and latinos in the US have with getting access to good schools.

  31. Frank Luo says:

    That is a point I already addressed. Asians never benefitted from institutional racism. In fact the Chinese at least were specifically institutionally discriminated against along with the other minorities, more so in certain ways. If righting the wrongs of institutional racism is the goal, there is no case to be made for discriminating Asians. If you think otherwise, please provide us with quotes from Fredrick Douglass et al. on their cruel and horrible Asian masters.

    Furthermore, what is being done here is itself actually institutional discrimination against Asians. If the Asians are being held to standards higher than all the rest of their students, including the white students. If the goal is to include black and Latino students, there is no morally supportable rationale for requiring superior performance of Asian applicants than white applicants. The only real reason is simple racism — the goal of the school is not to include blacks or Latinos, but to reserve space for whites, and specifically at the expense of Asian students with superior performance.

  32. Frank Luo says:

    Oh yeah and the “state schools are funded by every member of society” argument is really problematic on several levels. First of all, it directly contradicts your own argument that more disadvantaged blacks and Hispanics should be admitted, because the disadvantaged have the least income and pay the least in taxes (thus their definition as “the disadvantaged”). Second, it is a very slippery slope that ultimately leads to the logical conclusion that the more one pays the more one is entitled to enter public schools, which will lead to public schools basically selling their seats, which is inherently undesirable on many levels, and which also again result in a direct contradiction of the other goals that you stated your support for.

    The other, “every cross section of society” argument seems rather absurd. If that were the goal, every school would ideally have exactly the same student body, that matches the population as a whole, and every school would be average by definition.

  33. elbow says:

    The institutional racism I was referring to was the entire education system as a whole. Disadvantaged students predominantly grew up in areas with no good elementary schools and no good high schools. Even with straight A’s they are going to have trouble competing on the standardized tests (and in the coursework) because of how crappy their schools are. Thus they are extremely under-represented in colleges. In other words, the education system is failing them. Affirmative action is about universities doing their part to address this situation.

    Asians are over-represented in these schools. That is the reason it makes sense to penalize them on admissions. Whites are actually UNDER-represented at UCLA according to those stats. If you were going to pick who to penalize, choosing the most over-represented ethnic group that has the highest mean income (and thus the most options about which schools they can attend) doesn’t really count as very racist to me. Whites are also penalized by the way. I really can’t agree with your statement that the only reason to penalize an Asian applicant is to save a spot for a white student.

    You totally missed my point on your second post. Society as a whole funds these state schools, therefore the schools have obligations to serve society as a whole, not just the students in question. I dispute your claim that paying more into a public program must logically entitle you to more benefits. There are plenty of government programs that do not follow that model. Also, the people that pay the most taxes are the people that have the most options about which schools they can afford to attend so it is pretty ridiculous to say rich people need taxpayers to subsidize their college educations.

  34. elbow says:

    Oh i just read my post and what I said about coursework needs clarifying. I meant that in those crappy schools many of the classes are going to be inferior and you aren’t going to have as many opportunities to take college-level coursework in high school.

  35. Frank Luo says:

    Elbow:

    There are so many things wrong with your posts that I barely know where to begin.

    First of all, the contention that some candidates should be admitted because “their schools have failed them” is sheer idiocy. If that were the case, why is race even a factor at all? If making up for schools that failed some students, an Asian student who went to a crap school would have the same chance as a black of Hispanic student who went to the same school and have the same grades. But the admissions guidelines and your posts are clearly saying something that is completely contradictory to that statement. Asians are in fact being deliberately and institutionally discriminated against regardless of what schools they went to.

    Second of all, median household income is an extremely distorted statistic that is frequently used by those who wish to whitewash (no pun intended) the degree to which race correlates with social inequality in America. It conveniently leaves out the very rich and the very poor, and also ignores certain other statistics.

    For now I will simply point out that, if household income is to be considered, the SIZE of the household must be taken into account. Saying one family makes less money than another and is therefore disadvantaged is completely meaningless if the family has fewer people working than the other. What’s more, income is also influenced by a number of other factors which I will discuss in a minute.

    From the U.S. Census Bureau’s website:

    …and selecting for “White alone” and “Asian alone”, a more complete picture emerges:

    White alone:
    Average household size 2. Per capita income 23,918. Individuals below poverty level 18,847,674 (~8.91%). Persons with BA or above: 37291563 (~17.64%)

    Asian alone:
    Average household size 3. Per capita income 21,823. Individuals below poverty level 1,257,237 (~12.27%). Persons with BA or above: 2925743 (~28.56%).

    This clearly shows that 1) the median family income is severely distorted by failing to account for a **50%** difference in household size; 2) that whites, despite being far less educated, STILL make more money than Asians per person, and have a ~27.38% lower poverty rate.

    By your own argument “If you were going to pick who to penalize, choosing the most over-represented ethnic group that has the highest mean income (and thus the most options about which schools they can attend) doesn’t really count as very racist to me.”, the ethnicity that should be penalized is whites.

    However, I made no such argument, so you are just trying to set up a strawman to knock down. My argument has consistently been that the best students should be selected, period, without accounting for race. Which makes your argument either dishonest or ignorant and inept. Similarly, I never argued that those who pay more taxes should have preferential treatment. I am in fact vehemently against this position because it will inevitably lead to the entrenchment of social classes and the strangling of social mobility. I mentioned that as the absurd conclusion that your position of “funded by the whole society” would lead to if it was taken as the position that every segment of society is entitled to entry into elite universities because society as a whole funds these universituies, because that argument would inherently establish a connection between taxes and entitlement to places in elite universities. So your argument is again either dishonest or ignorant and inept. Perhaps you read it wrong, perhaps not. I don’t really care. Suffice it to point out that you are wrong on that count period.

    On the “social good” argument:

    I agree completely that universities should work for the public good. However, you are stating that the admission of students based on race rather than merit works towards the social good. This is a VERY arguable point, and reflects another point of ignorance and shorsightedness on your part, which point I will return to in a moment. I present the argument that the function of universities, especially top universities, is to advance the society as a whole by training the best minds to engage in intellectual endeavors, beenfitting society in a variety of ways, for example leading to technological and other advances which can be used for the good of all in the society in which the universities are located and ultimately the whole world.

    So that is a difference of opinion — you think “social good” is to bring up low income people to the income level of the average, while I contend that “social good” comes from the work done by best minds working together, and is much broader than just income. Coming back to the ignorance and shortsightedness you are exhibiting by your argument of (Admission)->(Economic Equality) which conveniently leaves out an underlying assumption that (Admission)=(Greater Income), that you are seeing greater income as the goal in education. I on the other hand believe that education, especially at elite universities, should be prepartion and training for contributing to society, both in the ways I mentioned above and in other ways, such as in public administration and policy. By equating university admission with income, you are only exposing your ignorant and shortsighted view that income is the real end game.

    Furthermore, I take issue with the fact that you lump all Asians together, despite the disparaties between Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, Cambodian, and a host of other cultures and ethnicities. Most universities tout themselves as paragons of diversity as well as “global” or “world” institutions. Why should the combined total of East Asian, Southeast Asian, and South Asians, who together constitute more than half of the world’s population, not be represented accordingly, especially if 1) these schools tout themselves as institutions which prepare their students for the world; and 2) these students have the best scores anyway?

    But I can see that you have already answered the question.

    By your quote “Whites are actually UNDER-represented at UCLA according to those stats”, you have shown what the real issue is here — it is not the over-representation of “Asians” (itself already an ignorant and racist categorization) that people like you have a problem with. The issue is that white dominance and entitlement is being threatened. And that conveniently answers the other question of why “Asians” are all lumped together for the purposes of admission and this discussion by those who argue for limiting the number of Asians — what people like you have a problem with is not that there are too many “Asians”, but that there are too few whites, which position, pursued to its root, exposes the fundamental belief that America is a white country and that whites are entitled to the lion’s share of its best resources by virtue of their race, the practical implication of the presence of which is already reflected in the above statistics showing that Asians, despite being much more likely to be college educated, still lag behind whites in income. But you and other people like you do not like admitting to being entitled racists because you know it’s morally indefensible, so you try to veneer over it by claiming that it’s for the social good, or for the good of the Asians themselves, in the same exact way that the “comfort level” theory was used to justify glass ceilings for minorities, which makes you a hypocrite in addition to everything else.

    So in just a couple of posts, you have exposed yourself as a racist — nay, a white supremacist — in addition to being entitled, a hypocrite, short-sighted, and dishonest and/or ignorant and inept. Just wonderful. All that in one person.

    And one last thing: it should be “whoM” to penalize. Not only is your argument dishonest and/or ignorant and inept, it is also grammatically incorrect.

    I pity the family, the community, and the schools that have produced a mind such as yours. I pray that America is better than that on the whole.

  36. elbow says:

    I thought we were having an honest conversation until you decided to commence with personal attacks. It’s really disappointing Frank.

  37. Frank Luo says:

    >I thought we were having an honest conversation until you decided to commence with personal attacks.

    Wow. Just wow.

    In what you call “an honest conversation”, you have:

    1. Made an assertion that is contrary to the established fact by saying that the discrimination against Asians is to make up for the lousy schools that non-Asian minority students attended;
    2. Referred to a statistic that is actually at least **50%** off by deliberately ignoring the difference in the average number of people in the household, and which is further disproven by the the lower per capita income of Asians compared to whites;
    3. EXPLICITLY endorsed racial discrimination, as shown in this QUOTE, that you: “enthusiastically approve of a bit of discrimination.”

    In short, you have lied outright, cited evidence that actually supports the exact opposite of what you are asserting, and then literally said that you endorse discrimination against Asians, who should yield their places in top universities to non-Asians with inferior accomplishments and test scores/grades.

    So I called you a dishonest, incompetent, ignorant racist. The evidence speaks for itself. If that is what you call an honest conversation, I wonder what you actually consider dishonest. But then again I doubt that anything can be dishonest to you because you obviously just think that whatever you do is honest, because you have managed to deceive yourself about your own motives. This is the worst aspect of the so-called “enlightened” people — they get so good at papering over their own motives, that they fool themselves into thinking they are doing these horrible racist things for the public good, and fool themselves into thinking they are not just out for their own interests.

    So, personal attack? No. I am calling you out on what you have written, which is dishonest or ignorant and inept, racist, and hypocritical.

    And while I am at it I might as well clear up one more thing for anyone who is not familiar with the classical logical flaws: Ad hominem attacks, or attacks on a person’s character to disparage the arguments the person has made, are considered an invalid method of argument because a person may make a valid point despite the person’s character. That is NOT what happened here. As an example, I will demonstrate how an ad hominem attack might look like:

    elbow: (Dishonest/ignorant racist crap)…and so it’s okay to deliberately shut out Asians in order to admit more whites.
    Frank: elbow is an inbred incestuous pedophile and so nothing he says has any validity.

    It is a classical logical flaw because even an inbred incestuous pedophile might say something that is true. The fact that he is an inbred incestuous pedophile does not necessarily impact on the evidence he cites or the arguments ha makes.

    However, that is NOT what happened here. In fact, it was exactly the OPPOSITE of what happened, which was that you spouted some dishonest or ignorant hate speech, cited some invalid evidence, and was called on it when I disproved what you have written by citing real evidence and solid arguments, and THEN called you a dishonest or ignorant racist based on the insupportable hate speech you spouted:

    elbow: (Dishonest/ignorant racist crap)…and so it’s okay to deliberately shut out Asians in order to admit more whites.
    Frank: elbow’s arguments are wrong because of (real evidence and arguments). Nothing elbow has said is right because the evidence points to the contrary and his arguments are fatally flawed. Because he has spouted these completely invalid arguments and enthusiastically endorsed racism, elbow is a dishonest, ignorant, racist, whose grammar also leaves something to be desired.

    But all this is just a way for you to avoid answering the points that I have made, because you find yourself unable to refute the evidence or the arguments presented. Which only makes you look like even more of a jackass than your dishonest, ignorant racist comments already do.

    Once again, you are an embarrassment to those that have raised and educated you, and I fear for a country where people who hold beliefs like yours are allowed to vote. America’s only hope is that dishonest, ignorant racists like your are and remain a small minority.

  38. jeff says:

    You have to be male to go into a male restroom. you have to be smart to get into UCLA. Not really a racial discrimination thing.

  39. Erica says:

    This is a sticky situation, and one I have mixed feelings about. On the one hand, if a high school student performs at a given level, he/she should have the same chance of getting admitted as a comparable student of a different race. HOWEVER, we all know that the opportunities given to students are not the same everywhere; some schools lack resources to lure high-quality teachers and acquire necessary materials. Should generations of non-Asian minority students be punished for what they don’t have? I see it as perpetuating a cycle of low education, low income, high crime culture among some communities, which is detrimental to everybody. No its not always fair to Asian or White students, but was the playing field ever fair to begin with!? I am a graduate of the UC school system and an Asian American, and I’ll be the first to admit that I DON’T want a 90% Asian student population.

  40. Christian says:

    Three issues:

    1) If you’re in a country that promotes multiculturalism vs. monoculturalism then it is legitimate to have a concern when any institution or forum becomes monocultural. Don’t confuse monoculturalism with the dominant race or the majority race. In that sense, a lack of multiculturalism is something to be concerned about. At the same time, this standard would have to be applied universally within that society – this is where the racism can come into play. There are no articles written about schools that are overly dominated by Caucasians. The racism comes when you cherry-pick.

    2) Secondly, my guess is that it would wind up being Asians who prefer to send their kids to schools where fewer Asians are admitted as it may carry more status.

    3) It’s important to differentiate between Asian students raised in the West vs. Asian students from Asia countries. Having lived in both Western and Asian countries extensively and having taught in both countries, some cultures have very different attitudes and levels of social permissibility towards plagiarism and violating academic ethical codes in order to get the degree without placing any value in understanding the content of the degree. What I’d like to see is a differentiation in articles like these between students of Asian and Western cultures – not racial backgrounds.

  41. truth in california says:

    What never gets brought up is how many Asians cheat in US colleges which is out of control. From what I’ve noticed It’s typically the ones from Asia over Asian Americans. This is not to diminish the earned grades and respect of the hard workers.

  42. Anonymous says:

    Is there something wrong with the Asian Schools?

    Wait…..Is it because the “really” smart Asians that have knocked out the other ‘Average’ Asians and therefore can’t even get a position in schools in their own country?

    I’ve always wondered….are schools in Asia packed out with Americans???

    No because American schools wont make you wanna kill yourself from stress after a year. If Asians are so smart, they should focus on increasing the appeal of their own schools to their students. Take the pressure of other countries who are left supporting their students.

    With the intentions being only to take their degrees and go back to their own country.. How does this help USA? How does a nations own school support its own country (aside from the money they pay ) How does this help america even compete at international level, to increase its intelligence. As people have mentioned – that America is being under-educated, it doesn’t really help when an American school cant even teach their own citizens.

  43. Fried Sushi says:

    Wow, Frank, ya’ll are so right…..And so very wrong!
    Yes, your views are well represented. And they would all be valid if we lived in a theoretical world. But we don’t, do we. Out here, in the real world, it’s chaos….people say one thing and do another. Going to school was more about dealing with people rather than pure academics. You had to deal with prima donna professors, conniving classmates and smelly roommates. Academics was the easy part of college. Just read and regurgitate. The hard part was about learning life lessons ie, money skills, the reason you don’t sleep with your friends girlfriend, partying hard and getting to class the next morning. Things I memorized for tests are long forgotten. But the most important lesson learned in college were interpersonal skills. And if you didn’t get to develop them in college, then you went into the world with interpersonal skills that are no better than a high school drop out. In other words, you could have a degree in physics but a personality of a 10 year old. Look at today’s Wall Street guys…they were all top of their class…and now they view themselves as gods….gods that kick grandma out of her house, gods that care less if they destroyed the worlds financial institutions. Point is, we don’t need academically superior people. We need smart people. Kind of like our founding fathers who were able to see hundreds of years into the future and do what’s best for mankind, not what’s best for their own interests. To have a open view, you need to be educated from a lot of different sources. Colleges should have a variety of sources, ie, a variety of students. If that means limiting asians to 13%, so be it. At 40%, there is no variety. Might as well trade in your Birkenstocks for a pair of geta’s. Asians shouldn’t cluster to one school. If they can’t get into one school, make them go to another. I’m sure U of South Dakota could use an asian view in their sociology classes. They would benefit and the asian student will also have a deeper understanding of the country he/she is living in. There is something to be said about brand management of colleges. It defines who you are whether you you like it or not. Therefore, it is more important to reflect the spectrum of ethnicities rather than a bunch of SAT scores. We are, after all, people not a commodity.

  44. Frank Luo says:

    Again, your posts only makes my point for me.

    If 40% of some ethnicity means that there is no variety, would 73% be better? Of course not. That would create a monolithic group on campus.

    But that is how many whites there would be if “Asians” (more on that later) were restricted to 13% as you propose, then combined with the 13% black and 1% Hispanic from the article about the Asian population in the UC system. Even with 40% “Asians,” those statistics still leaves the UC system with 46% whites. But somehow that doesn’t bother you and others who think like you.

    So, again, the problem that some people have is not that there is no variety. It’s only that there aren’t enough whites on campus. Again, simple racism is being dressed up as some kind of indignant backlash against “Asians,” to justify an effort to admit large numbers of whites who are less qualified than a large number of “Asian” candidates.

    Affirmative action for whites. That’s what it really boils down to.

    And the second point — “Asians.” As I have already pointed out, that catchall label includes a whole spread of extremely different cultures. 40% Asian would probably be something like 20% Chinese-American, 7% Korean-American, 7% South-Asian, 3% Japanese, and 3% “other” such as Vietnamese, Thai, Hmong, etc., etc. These people have VERY different cultures, languages, etc. Variety? What is the variety among the 73% white population that the racist quota system you advocate? I mean, I’m sure there is lots of variety among American whites, but the difference in culture between the white guy from Minnesota and the white guy from Michigan is not going to begin to compare to the difference in culture between the Korean Buddhist guy and the Pakistani muslim guy. Yet the latter two would both just be “Asian” in the statistics.

    So once again it comes to the same point in the end — the people who are carrying out or advocating this racist practice of requiring higher accomplishments from “Asians” are not looking for diversity. All they want is to exclude more Asians in order to make room for more whites.

    And if you think the financial crisis was caused by bookworms who have no interpersonal skills, you are either an absolute moron or just flat out lying. If numbers and “book smart” were the only traits that got people to the top on Wall Street, the top echelons of the financial firms would be packed with Asians. Look at who is in charge at the investment banks. It’s exactly the people whose advancement you seem so worried about, people who get inferior grades but who are good at social engineering, who are destroying this country for their own personal short-term gain. When such a person also happens to be unprincipled, they can do tremendous damage:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-03/did-psychopaths-take-over-wall-street-asylum-commentary-by-william-cohan.html

    You think academic accomplishments alone is what get people into high places? They probably SHOULD but are not. It is part of the problem that people are thinking that way. Merit SHOULD be the dominant factor, but it is not. If merit were the dominant factor, Dubya would never have gotten into either Harvard OR Yale, much less become president.

    And one more thing — these “Asians” you talk about, who you seem to imply need a “deeper understanding of the country they live in” — were BORN here, and in all likelihood understand the country much better than the average white kid who has only ever seen non-whites on TV.

  45. Fried Sushi says:

    Frank, you have issues.
    Calling people names, which you seem to do a lot of, only exposes your moronic virtues. Do you call people names to their face? I’ll bet not. You only find courage when you are alone in front of a computer.

    This site is called “All Look Same,” a humorous look at a very deep subject. Sometimes a softer, light hearted approach opens the doors for many others to join this intellectual discourse that is a very “touchy” subject close to all of our hearts.

    You berate everyone. Frankly, Frank, I’m tired of your chest thumping. It’s Asian like you that are the problem. This is America, and if someone hasn’t said this to you before ( which I doubt ) – “Who the fuck are you?!”

    As crude as the question is, there is a point. Who are you to voice such a strong, antisocial opinion and condemn any other opinion but your own?

    Have you noticed that you have killed a lot of threads? Are you patting yourself on the back because you thought you made your point? You killed the threads because you changed the subject matter to personal attacks. The threads died because everyone else has a sense of maturity….something that is foreign to you.

    Do us all a favor – go out and get laid. Have a few beers. Make some friends.

    I actually agree with a lot of your points but the way it is presented – by shoving it down people’s throats and berating them – makes me reject you and anything to do with you. Hmmmm, and you wonder why you have problems in this country. It’s not them. It’s you.

  46. Frank Luo says:

    I am one to call a racist a racist and a hypocrite a hypocrite. A surprising number of people have these beliefs and it never occurs to them that they are what they are, and if I see a lie I will point it out.

    Did it occur to you that that the person classified as “Asian” in the U.S. Census or some school survey might be born here and have an equal or better understanding of the country than you do? Not from your post. Your post only shows that you consider those who look different from you inherently foreign, which is the very definition of racism. Yet you somehow find it acceptable to question me. “This is America” indeed. Which means I am entitled to say what I say. If someone doesn’t like it, they might want to examine why they don’t think equating “America” with “white” is an inherently racist view that is also inherently incompatible with the very idea of America. Talking about the Founders’ wisdom while directly controverting the equality among citizens.

    As for who I am, I am someone who actually believes in the equality of human beings that America ostensibly stands for, which is more than I can say about you. The people who are having problems are people who will somehow find some excuse to ignore logically sound arguments just because it challenges what they *want* to believe. And whatever else I am, I am someone who doesn’t go around trying to put everything that’s going wrong on other people on the basis that they *look* different from me.

    And if you don’t think I say things to people’s faces, you don’t know me.

  47. Fried Sushi says:

    Hey Frank, FYI, I’m first generation Japanese with a US public school system “edumacation.”
    Yeah, I don’t know anything about racism.

    Went to U of Mich. in the 80′s ( affirmative action days ) and was part of the quota system…it was rumored at the time the school was trying to increase black enrollment to 20% and limit asian enrollment to less than 20%. Yeah, what do I know about the subject matter of this thread.

    Dude, some of us have lived this. And just like how you are “touchy” about the subject, so are the white folks. Your points are obvious to me, but your rhetoric scares the shit out of white folks.

    White Americans are too proud right now to accept reverse racism. However, with people like you and the continued domination of Asian enrollment into colleges, White America will revolt……and the consequences will be bad for all of us.

    What’s wrong with a college trying to limit it’s class to less than 80% Asian? It’s not like we are entitled to a college education. Isn’t a College’s identity formed from the student population? I would hate to see schools like BYU and TCU become all Asian. It wouldn’t make sense.

    This is just ideology vs practicality. Yes, it’s racism. But it’s not like Jim Crow laws are going to kick in if we let this one go. I hate to make a Star Trek quote but the “needs of the many outweigh the needs of a few.”

  48. truth in californnia says:

    You martyrs can argue about race all you want since will project your errors over listening to reason anyways. Recent data already shows that over 70 to nearly 90% of all college applications, test scores, degrees etc from Asia are FRAUDULENT. This is what happened with Indian immigration which is why it was capped. The US is giving Asians from Asia a chance and they are shaming themselves because many of their parents can’t do things the honest way. Universities care more about FOREIGN Asians and OOS because need the money. Go ahead and blame the white man all you want as it only shows YOUR insecurities. Have a great day . :)

  49. Fried Sushi says:

    Yes, you made that point before. We are all cheaters.
    At least we can write complete sentences.

  50. truth in california says:

    How amusing that you can only offer two fallacies within three sentences of feedback. To be honest, I don’t participate in long drawn out arguments like these, many which are chock full of self serving biases and rationalizations with incredibly selfish intent. If you were truly concerned about education in the US, you wouldn’t off the cuff dismiss what I’m saying. All you can focus on though is race, most likely because you have racist tendencies that you are struggling with as displayed on this post.
    Sorry buddy, but your race based arguments don’t hold water with the majority of Americans. Americans were indoctrinated from a very young age with democratic values of fairness and a sense of justice. That is simply not true with many other countries whose moral compass can be summed up in the idiom of the end justifies the means. Americans were also indoctrinated with the concept of the potential of the individual. There are many success stories of the most downtrodden people, who against all odds, rose above and became successful well adjusted citizens. Some of those obstacles were economic in nature, but the majority of those struggles were admitted to be internal ones. Cultural groupthink and social peer pressure, whether from family or friends, suppresses the potential of the individual to the lowest common denominator.

    That leaves only YOU with the choice whether you possess the strength of character and scruples to succeed. You could flatter youself are the smartest person in the world, but if others perceive your behavior as arrogant and petty, then I doubt you will be able to persuade them further of your flawless intellect. This is the same way with the majority of the elite colleges in the US. HYPS want well rounded people, not just test takers, and seek out quality over quantity. If you want a meritocracy merely built upon test taking then you should consider moving to China. Here in the US, elite colleges look for potential students that possess both the academic and human qualities they feel match their school. HYPS doesn’t want dickheads who think they are the shit and better than everyone else because scored high on some test. They like nice genuine people who aren’t so caught up in the status of their institution and who possess efficacy over mere efficiency.

    I’ve sat in on and witnessed many Harvard and Stanford interviewer/recruiters conversing with potential Asian students. The main reason the majority get rejected is their lack of knowledge about the school and what they want to do. If anything, the standards were set lower, and these representatives were looking for anything from these Asian students to justify their admittance. They went to a good school and got good grades, have good ECs, llive in Beverly Hills to Brentwood, their parents have money etc. An ideal candidate you would think, but they claimed to have researched the school (Harvard and Stanford in this case) yet asked questions and spent too much time discussing their personal ambitions that didn’t align with the schools. They wasted too much time talking about majors those institutions didn’t even offer! The interviewers would try to tell them that the major they were interested in and discussing was only offered at their friendly rivarly school (Cal or MIT) and had to repeat themselves a few times to reiterate that point.

    So please be my guest and be as racist and classist as you want. That way you can get together and hang out with other racist and classist people so as to not bother those of us who have frankly speaking more important things to worry about. BTW: UCLA is an overrated brand name as well that became world renown due to sports and good marketing and doesn’t even have strong undergraduate studies. UCLA, like Stanford, have predominantly been strong graduate schools, and best known for their medical facilities.

  51. Fried Sushi says:

    Yawn…at least you could have made your long winded comment interesting. If you would read my posts, you would see we are saying the same thing.

    But it seems you’re looking for a fight so let me introduce you to my good buddy Frank Luo. He thinks college entry should be based solely on test scores.

    Frank, this is Truth. He/she is one of these angry people I was trying to warn you about. Truth is being truthful…Truth harbors some deep anger and resentment – and your “ram it down their throat” attitude only strengthens the resentment.

    The LPGA is also having problems with cheating, mostly from the Koreans and the Chinese. So the issue of Asians cheating is not just limited to academics.

  52. truth in californnia says:

    Now I’m angry :) wish i knew why. I never knew i was suppose to smile and laugh when I’m angry. At least you are entertaining Fried even though your arguments are weak. I may not fully agree with Frank Lou’s attitude or what he wrote but at least he has the conviction to speak openly what he thinks. He also articulated why he felt this way with good supporting arguments. Even though I may disagree with him on minor points, how he has presented himself and his argument, I can respect. You on the other hand have not displayed respect and woefully lack strength of character and integrity. I see another half dozen fallacies with projections…shame!

  53. Fried Sushi says:

    Awww…..does this mean we can’t be friends?

    I’m so bummed ;..-(

  54. truth in california says:

    In all honesty, why would I want to be friends with someone who lacks such personal integrity as you? Your sarcasm and lack of maturity are very unbecoming and your general demeanor is disgraceful. Please stay in the midwest and keep your ignorance and racist tendencies there with you. Meanwhile, I will continue to enjoy the beautiful blue skies and sunny 75 degree weather here in California with my beautiful Japanese-American girlfriend. We both attend one of the most beautiful campuses in the US with its award winning Japanese influenced architecture. Then after class with my super cool Japanese-American photography teacher, I’m going to hang out with my Japanese-American friend who I love discussing and shooting film and photography with. Then later on tonight, I’m going to hang out and play some music with my other Japanese-American friend who is your age.

    Excuse me for being color blind and basing my friendships on individual integrity, intelligence, and creativity. I don’t live a closed insulated life and love having a mix of white, black, mexican, asian, and middle eastern roommates and friends. This weekend, I’m looking forward to hanging out with my close black friends from Detroit and Royal Oak, Michigan. It doesn’t threaten me at all that I am of the minority where I live and accept that there are always going to be racists. I merely chose to associate with happier people who don’t sit around conjuring up conspiracy theories as a way to project their own prejudiceness.

    I’ve never had a problem with any of my Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Vietamese, Philipino etc friends at all. I consider them Americans just as they consider themselves Americans who don’t have some cultural identity crisis or superiority/inferiority complex. Many of the other Asians who come here tend to adapt to American culture but there are some who bring their backward racist tendencies with them. Thankfully, those people are a minority and generally stick to themselves since being around such people is not a pleasant experience for most civil human beings.

    I use to get upset with the lack of ethics some people have when it came to lying, cheating, and stealing. Although it still bothers me, it doesn’t as much, since I’ve come to realize such people are only lying and cheating themselves. I have been pleasantly surprised that those same college cheaters are rarely smart enough to figure out if and when the answer they copied is correct or not. I study hard and do the best I can without resorting to cheating and typically come out on top, well above any of the cheaters. My Asian friends agree with me that Americans are way too tolerant to these students coming from other places trying to cheat their way into Cal and UCLA. The last thing I worry about is having to compete with Asians since the many who sincerely study hard and share a similar work ethic as me always come out ahead in the long run. I’ve grown to like the lazy people who cheat since they will end up screwing themselves and make it easier for me and my friends to dominate the classroom and screw up the curve. At Berkeley, you are competing on a collective level in the classroom, and those that are unprepared for the level of work will watch their GPA plummet. Then when all is said and done, me and my Asian friends will get together, kick back, smoke a blunt, and laugh at all the cheating losers who get C’s on their permanent transcript. :)

  55. Fried Sushi says:

    OK……..I’m not sure why you are trying so hard to justifying yourself.

    I love the assumption that you think I live in the midwest…..my weather forecast is the same as yours….do you even know what the topic of this thread is?

    Of course you do. You know everything.

  56. Frank Luo says:

    Fried Sushi: I readily admit to and apologize for my error. Ass/u/me is not a good color on anyone.

    However it still does not change the fact that requiring higher achievements from Asian-Americans than other groups is institutional racism. While an argument can be made allowing black and Hispanic students in at the expense of white students on moral grounds, for the indelible mark of shame that slavery and racism has left on the nation’s history, there is no such argument to be made for making room for whites at the expense of Asian-Americans.

    I understand and see the merit in your argument that overtly combative approach in opposing racism may antagonize people. However, consider that the approach taken has been to tolerate and work within the system. Where has that brought American society? Where has that put Asian-Americans?

    Take a look at the challenger versus negotiator approach theory of African-American activism. Asian-Americans do not challenge. It is a stereotypical tactic of Asian cultures to attempt to circumvent obstacles rather than to fight or even to acknowledge them. While this approach may move one to a certain point, however, it will sooner or later hit the glass wall. It allows the perpetrators of racism to shape the conversation and mold the views of the public into something that should never be accepted. For example, the whole “Asian-Americans have the highest income” myth, which I have debunked above by citing US Census data. Such myths are so perniciously prevalent, that even people who are actively researching or fighting these perceptions are often taken in by them. Wesley Yang’s “Paper Tigers” essay, clearly intended to challenge the status quo, cites this misleading fact of the highest median family income at face value.

    Asian-Americans do not even negotiate in this sense because the myth has been that there *is* no racism causing detriment to the Asian-American community. This is false. Institutional racism is and has been perpetrated against Asian-Americans, but it is generally not recognized. It must be recognized as what it is if it is to be fixed.

    The Asian-American community needs its challengers. It needs its Rosa Parks, its freedom riders, its Martin Luther King. But none of this will come to pass if people continue to refuse to acknowledge the ubiquitous institutional racism that plagues the community. It must be recognized and addressed for what it is.

    And while I think Truth goes a little overboard, I do know that there have been instances of mass exam cheating in Asia. Asian-Americans are subject to the same rules and safeguards against cheating that all Americans are, but the same safeguards do not exist in Asia. Mass cheating in India in IT certification exams has made the news a number of times, and entire sets of school records disappear in China, stolen from hard-working students with good grades and sold to persons of means to get their rich kids into the right schools. It is a legitimate concern.

    Still, 90% is a ridiculous figure. Much more likely that it’s a few people who have the money and/or power to obtain tests from corrupt proctors or to influence school officials.

  57. Fried Sushi says:

    Hi Frank. I appreciate that your post is refocused on the subject matter.

    We agree about institutional racism but we differ about how it affects Asians.

    Your challenger versus negotiator theory for Asians is a very good point. But it’s not a glass wall that we hit. It’s a white wall with masonic symbols. America is inherently racist. At it’s core, is a political system that allows for very few people to control just about everything. My point is regardless of how logically, morally and spiritually correct your argument is, it contradicts the free masons mission to create a new world order…as described on the $1 bill.

    I think we already recognize that institutional racism exists. When you say it needs to be “fixed,” what are you proposing?

    You recognized that Asians tolerate and work within the system. Can you expand on why that is bad? In this multicultural society how else can we get along, grow our families and live our lives?

    Are you familiar with the stereotype that you should never turn your back on a Japanese businessman? A Japanese businessman is a challenger dressed in a custom fit negotiator suit. Most people only see the negotiator suit. Humbleness and politeness is perceived as a weakness and most people try to take advantage of this. When the Japanese businessman cuts a deal with the competition, he is called a backstabber. But from the Japanese businessman’s point of view, he cut a deal with the people who showed him the most respect. My point is, we don’t need to wait around for the climate to warm up to multiculturalism. We have enough freedom in this country to start a business, ie. create our own economic freedom. To put it bluntly, don’t mind the white folks. Go on and do what your best at. They need us more than we need them.

    I find it interesting you use the term ” Asian-American” and “African -American.” Are you subjugating us? ;-) What’s wrong with just “American?”

  58. John Fakename says:

    Everyone seems to overlook the fact that it’s the most successful and wealthy Asians (as in inhabitants of Asia) that are able to get to the Western colleges. You get your education and you go back to the homeland, to join a company to compete against the one that educated you.
    I think that’s part of this paranoia.

  59. Fried Sushi says:

    Exactly – it’s a paranoia, ie. a mental problem.

    At one point, Americans were secure enough with themselves not to worry about petty issues like this thread.

    Paranoia does bad things. Makes everyone sound like whiny bitches.

    Quit blaming others – quit asking for hand outs

    Roll up your sleeves and get back to work!

  60. KIKI says:

    I think when it comes to admittance to the UC system White and Asian American students benefits more from academic achievement and not using race as a factor where as Blacks, Latinos and other minorities benefits from using race as a factor AND SOME MAY ASK WHY ? On average Asian and White American students perform better in school and score higher on test ofcourse Blacks and Latino’s and others also do well but there is a higher percentage of Asian and White Students that do well WHY IS THIS Well we should look at the culture and community of each group studies have shown that over all students in upper/ middle class neighborhoods perform better than students in low income neighborhoods, of course this does not mean that living in a middle/upper class neighborhood will guarantee good grades and living in a low income neighborhood will guarantee bad grades there are students in low income neighborhoods that do well but there are a higher percentage of students in upper middle class neighborhoods that do well most Whites and Asians that get into UC come from middle upper class neighborhoods where as many African Americans and Hispanics come from ghetto low income neighborhoods where they are distracted and surrounded by domestic violence, drug and gang violence, negative peer pressure etc and this could have an impact on their academic achievement so i agree that race should be used as a factor should we continue to discriminate against folks based on academic achievement or should we discriminate based on race that’s the issue i definitely think race should be used as a factor African Americans make up less than 5 % of the student body in all UC’s what a disgrace

  61. Frank Luo says:

    FYI

    http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/08/13/white-definitions-merit-and-admissions-change-when-they-think-about-asian-americans

  62. dubbs says:

    NOT all ove those “Asian” students are the brightest selection of incoming freshmen! UCLA has become quite elitest themselves, and routinely turn down “other minority” students with equally high G.P.As!( my nephew, now attending Pepperdine University, was actually sent a letter suggesting he “try a Cal State systen school” and was even asked on a tour with his high schook of westwood IF he played basketball!

    Its about image, alumni, and clicks at,UCLA. Check other private colleges/ universities, as well as the CSU sysyem, they have more diversity! Even so called “ghetto,snobby” USC has more NON athlete african american students(6% of student body compared to barely at the tax payer FUNDED “public school”known as known as UCLA. Asians have become the “safe minorities”. They don’t make waves politically, they throw cash into the alum system, and they hypocritically engage in the same cronyism and nepotism to ensure their own status quo in the UC systems they would’ve once denounced whites for doing!

    Ask yourself how a visible minority of which only has 9 percent of the states population , has nearly 30 percejt of the attendance at all UC system schools. Its “more” than being smart….

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