Essay by TYINITTYUniversity, Bachelor's December 2004

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"Will A Class-based Affirmative Action Policy help Black Poverty?"

Affirmative action has been one of the most controversial and misunderstood civil rights issue of today. The debate over affirmative action takes on for the most part a harsh disposition. Supporters of affirmative actions view it as a necessary breakthrough, many oppressors view it as an incompetent breakthrough and many others look upon affirmative action as both or neither - as a necessary or incompetent tonic for an obstinate social disease. In "Race Matters" by Cornell West, he argues, that affirmative action is not the most important however; it is an important issue for the progress of blacks in America. In order for blacks to progress, in my own view I too believe that a more

class-based affirmative action is necessary in order to help eradicate black poverty.

Affirmative action is apart of the redistributive measure. Redistributive measures (including FHA mortgage loans to specific home buyers, GI benefits to people who have served in the armed forces, and subsidies to certain farmers) which has been a part of American history for quite some time now.

"Every redistributive measure is a compromise with and concession from the caretakers of American prosperity--that is, big business and big government" (West, 63). In that case, we can all agree that affirmative action is a compromise that seeks to promote diversity, enhance the standard if living and quality of life and remedy the inequalities in the workplace, higher education for women and minorities. West agrees that affirmative action should be viewed a neither a major solution to poverty nor a sufficient means to equality however, he claims, without affirmative action racial and sexual discrimination would return with a vengeance and it would be extremely difficult for blacks to obtain access America's prosperity.

Those who oppose...