Affirmative Action


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Affirmative action has two distinct meanings. The first definition of affirmative action refers to individuals having equal opportunity without regard to their sex, race, and religion. The second meaning is almost exactly the same, except that it is directly related to sex, race, and religion. Affirmative action was brought about to ensure the freedom and rid of discrimination in many different situations. For example, many "Upper Class " jobs, such as government employment, were rarely ever given to the minority classes. Although, affirmative action has had numerous negative impacts despite the fact that it was created for the good of society.(http://www.adversity.net/Terms_Definitions/TERMS/Affirmative_Action.htm)
     The United States authorized the Civil Rights in 1964, as a result, many problems were brought about in society and the way it functioned. Many disadvantages and consequences were faced for people with physical complications such as those with handicaps or the elderly. In time, the problem became greater and something had to be done in order to resolve this issue. On September 24, 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson made Executive Order #11246 official at Howard University which required federal employees "to take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed..without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin." Without knowing so, President Johnson had created one of the most problematic and ironically one of the most segregated legislations.(Compton’s Interactive Encyclopedia)
     At first affirmative action was made in order to assist the under privileged people of America which was highly discriminated against when the Civil Rights act was brought about. There was social conflict, economic stress, and racial tension did not make the position of those with no source of income any easier. Was it a coincidence that most entrepreneur, business leaders, and managing positions in the United States was held by white males? It did not take long before the majority realized that the business leaders and corporate executives were discriminating towards minorities and those not of the same race, religion, or sex. President Johnson's choice was highly approved by most of the middle and lower class people. Naturally, the leaders, executives, and managers did not think highly of President Johnson.(Compton’s Interactive Encyclopedia)
     Not so long after the legislation was passed, many minority groups were already seeking revenge and were looking to take advantage of the newly implemented affirmative action laws. The main minority group that was affected by the new laws were those of African-American decent.

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They believed the years of torment, torture, and economic stress was brought about because of the discrimination of the white executive leaders. Immediately, the government abided to their pleas of anger and resentment by installing new laws to help them attain better employment and job statuses. This is where negative impacts of affirmative action begins to take effect upon society. Was it true that white men were responsible for the suffering of all African-American people? The white man did play a large role on the torment caused to the African-Americans throughout the history of the Untied States. Although, if the African-American class was seeking revenge and looking forward to taking advantage of the affirmative action laws then it was most likely hurting the economy and social issues, rather then bringing about justification. It also resulted in the resentment and angst towards the government by the white upper class men. This is something the government was not looking forward to, especially since this is the class that is literally America's backbone. The highest paying tax ranking consists mainly of these white upper class men. What was going to happen to the economy if there was to be a revolt from the executives and highly paid men? It would result in turmoil and even lead to a civil war between the upper and lower classes.(Affirmative Action in the 1980’s: Dismantling the Process of Discrimination)
     Affirmative action was implemented with many problems that were not clearly dealt with. People were not allowed to discriminate against race, religion, or sex. Although, why would an executive employ someone who he/she does not see fit for the position of the job. Executives make decisions that are considered to be for the best of their company. It is unfair if the executive is forced to employ someone who is not competent enough to sustain and fulfill the requirements of the job. The minority who is not employed will immediately bring the case to the court's attention and claim is it an act of discrimination. This is a huge negative effect of affirmative action and is still seen today.(Affirmative Action in the 1980’s: Dismantling the Process of Discrimination)
     The laws not only refer to the working status of minorities but also the education status of underprivileged citizens. This is clearly shown at the University of California at Berkeley. Only 0.8% of African-American students were accepted by academic criteria. The rest were accepted based on their "minority status." Why does an African-American get accepted to a school only because of his minority position and at the same time no such opportunities are given to others? This is a large defect that is a result of affirmative action which has been a topic of discussion for many years.(http://pwa.acusd.edu/~e_cook/ucb-95.html )
     In conclusion, affirmative action has many different aspects. It was created to ensure the justification of all the people in America. Although, there were certain consequences that were followed by the newly implied law. The law was created for the good of the people, but it is also resulted in many negative impacts that can still be witnessed today.



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