January 25, 1999
Evaluating "Race, Not Class"
I chose "Race, Not Class", by Nathan Glazer as my essay to evaluate. Glazer is trying to convince his readers that the affirmative action policy is fine the way it is, being race-based. His proponents want to revise it to a class based policy. By revising it to such, he believes that it would damage the opportunities for African Americans, for whom he feels that the policy was intended for. Glazer was not effective in his article. The affirmative action policy has been successful in the past in providing room for African Americans in the workplace and schools. Glazer believes that it is effective as is.
Glazer believes that the replacement of race-based affirmative action with class-based affirmative action, next to complete abolition, would be a bad alternative. This is considered because "...preference on the basis of race arouses anger and a sense of injustices among whites,...."
(390). His statement here is felt very strongly. It makes anyone feel left out or looked over when "they" do not meet the criteria or qualify for the job, program, or school of interest.
The proponents of class-based affirmative action claim that this would be a lot better than the race-based affirmative action and would not produce the same hostility as before. Class-based affirmative action will not violate the Constitution or civil rights. They claim class-based "would reduce the irritation and anger of those excluded, because of moral legitimacy of this ground of preference,... and reduce the cases of inequity". (390). I do not agree with that claim, because you will still have the same "irritation and anger" from the classes that are included and excluded. The higher class would continue to look down on the lower class. The lower class would continue to feel...