Affirmative action has been a long debated issue on both sides of the political spectrum, by those who believe affirmative action programs should be abolished and those who think they still serve a vital purpose. Affirmative action is defined as "A policy designed to give special attention to or compensatory treatment to members of some previously disadvantaged group." Roughly forty years ago, the federal government first took steps to ensure equal opportunity for minorities in employment. Since then, affirmative action programs have expanded to include women and have been instituted in many sectors including higher education and the military. Affirmative action is actually quite unconstitutional, and it also provides a wonderful example of reverse racism. Affirmative action essentially causes more harm than good and only serves to cause more problems in the workplace as well as public service agencies.
Today, even supporters of affirmative action are unclear about what exactly affirmative action is out to accomplish.
Is the goal to compensate for past wrongs against minorities, or, is it to achieve diversity on campuses and in the workplace? In 1965, in a speech to Harvard's graduating class, President Lyndon Johnson addressed the importance of affirmative action at the time. He saw it as significant in remedying past discrimination against minorities. He said "You do not take a man who for years has been hobbled by chains, liberate him, bring him to the starting line of a race, saying, 'you are free to compete with all the others,' and still justly believe you have been completely fair, thus it is not enough just to open the gates of opportunity. All our citizens must have the ability to walk through those gates." At the time, affirmative action seemed like a good idea. In black and white, it was being shown...