The question on whether affirmative action is still necessary in American context remains a controversial issue in a modern society. This issue raises a heated debate among scholars and members of the public who articulate contradictory views on this matter. A greater position of the population holds the view that affirmative action remains relevant in the American context. The proponents affirm that the government has the sole responsibility of establishing institutions that will foster for effective implementation of affirmative action. However, this predisposition is highly criticized by the opponents who articulate that affirmative action holds no meaningful position in the American context. The opponents argue that adaption of affirmative action program/policy fuels reverse discrimination against the minorities. Based on this assertion, the opponents proclaim that government should not advocate for effective implementation of affirmative action program.
For many years, African-America have been oppressed, underprivileged and discriminated based on racial, religion, sex, and ethnicity constructs. This move has created a rift between Native American and African-America thus jeopardizing government’s effort of restoring peace, harmony, and coexistence in the country. Over the years, African-Americans, disabled people and other minority groups have been discriminated and denied equal opportunities in education and employment cycles. Most institutions of higher learning have escalated the issue of racial discrimination by using racial, ethnic, and social economic constructs as parameters in admitting students (Deruy 1). This move has denied many African-American students an opportunity to advance their careers and education thus increasing illiteracy level. In a similar vein, minority groups have been denied an equal opportunity in the employment sector. Most employers in private and public sector do not accord minority groups a chance to compete favorably with their counterparts in the job market, despite the former group having right qualifications for the job. Employers have a perception that African-American are inferior and that they cannot deliver at workplace. This move have has increased the unemployment rate and widened the income gap between the rich and the poor. Statistics affirm that more than 111 million Native Americans are employed compared to 11.3 million African-Americans. This disparity in employment rate and income levels between the two groups is a clear indication that the government should reinforce implementation of affirmative action; a measure that will restore fairness and eliminate discrimination.
The history of affirmative action has its foundation in social and activist movements, which emerged during 1950s. Social and activists movements advocated for reforms in almost all facets of the society and fought for the rights of the minority. However, it was until 1961 that affirmative action policy attained its crescendo, after President John F. Kennedy signed the first legislation order 10925 (Terry 34). The order advocated for equal employment opportunity and condemned discrimination of employees based of color, race, religion, sex, and social economic background. A few years later, the Congress enacted several pieces legislations, which aimed at of redressing past discrimination on the minority group thus supporting affirmative action policy.
Although implementation of affirmative action program rise the issue of “quotas” commonly referred as preferential treatment, the government should continue supporting affirmative action policy because the policy advocates for equality in the society. Advocacy for equality and fairness in employment, business, and education cycles remains a fundamental aspect behind implementation of affirmative action. This move will help in reducing unemployment rate, enhance productivity, and promote technology advancement and coexistence among the people. The success of American as a nation squarely depends on unity of its citizens and not on class conflicts between the Native Americans and African-Americans. The act of implementing affirmative action is the only way America will remain a superpower nation in the world and maintain its reputation in the international community.
In order to attain goals and objective envisioned in affirmative action policy, I believe that the government should reform the judicial so that it effectively implements the policy. The judicial has the obligation of safeguarding the rights of all people as envisioned in the American constitution. Additionally, the judicial has the mandate of ensuring that those who violate the constitution and laws of the land are held accountable for their action. This implies that judicial should impose punitive measures on employers who fail to follow provisions of affirmative action policy; a move that will foster for equality and fairness in education, employment and other government quotas. In a similar vein, the government through the Congress should formulate and enact more legislation aimed at supporting affirmative action program. The newly enacted policies will act as subsidiary policies aimed at strengthening the main affirmative action policy. Consequently, the new legislations should not only address the issue of discrimination in education and employment sectors, but also extend to other facets of the society. This move will help in creating a society free from discrimination on basis of color, sex, gender, race and religion thus fostering coexistence, harmony and sustainability. It is imperative for all involved parties to mobilize their resources and join hands in the implementation of affirmative action policy.
Deruy, Emily . "Supreme Court to Hear Affirmative Action Cases That Could Broadly Impact College Admissions - ABC News." ABCNews.com - Breaking News, Latest News & Top Video News - ABC News. Version 1. ABCNews.com - Breaking News, 26 Mar. 2013. Web. 17 Apr. 2013.
Terry, Anderson. The Pursuit of Fairness: A History of Affirmative Action. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004. Print.