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Michelle Obama Speaks Candidly to Black Male College Students: Video

Obama gives students advice on how to respond when someone questions if they belong.

Former First Lady Michelle Obama visited Motown Museum in Detroit and spoke with Black male students from Wayne State University, many of whom are the first in their family to attend college. Obama's message of encouragement is poignant in a time when the viewpoint of Black males in this country is so negatively skewed.

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Trump to Reverse Obama-Era Guidelines on Considering Race in College Admissions

Trump's efforts to rescind the affirmative action guidelines just add to the trend to erase landmark accomplishments of the Obama legacy.

The Trump administration plans to toss an Obama-era guideline that encourages colleges and universities to consider race as a way of promoting diversity.

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DOJ Seeks to End Affirmative Action — Claiming Discrimination Against Whites: NYT

Trump throws more fake red meat to his base, diverting attention from repetitive management failures, uncovered lies, Republican legislator push back and the lowest approval ratings of any president at this point in his term.

The U.S. Justice Department is potentially planning to redirect resources of its civil rights division to investigate and possibly sue universities over admissions policies deemed to have discriminated against white applicants.

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Supreme Court Upholds Affirmative Action

A 4-3 majority ruled to uphold a higher education affirmative action program.

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court ruled this morning to uphold an affirmative action program at the University of Texas, determining that using race as a factor in the admissions process to achieve greater diversity is constitutional.

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Supreme Court Justices Challenge Affirmative Action at Universities

"I'm just not impressed by the fact that — that the University of Texas may have fewer [Black students]. Maybe it ought to have fewer," Justice Antonin Scalia said.

Justice Antonin Scalia

Just as the racially charged protests at colleges and universities across the country gradually died down, affirmative action in higher education is now taking center stage as a heated discussion takes place in the Supreme Court — where one justice has already questioned if Black students even have a place in competitive schools.

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ADA 25 Years Later: Definite Progress But Hiring Gaps Remain

As the Americans With Disabilities Act celebrates its 25th anniversary July 26, significant gaps remain in hiring the 19 percent of Americans with disabilities. New laws aim to improve the efforts of federal contractors and help people with disabilities save more.

Photo by Shutterstock

On July 26, 1990, when former President George H.W. Bush signed the Americans With Disabilities Act into law, it was heralded as the beginning of a new era of improved access and employment for people with disabilities.

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Supreme Court Decides To Revisit Affirmative Action

Decision on Abigail Fisher v. The University at Austin Texas may decide the fate of affirmative action in colleges and universities.

By Sheryl Estrada

The Supreme Court is once again involved in the affirmative action case Abigail Fisher vs. The University of Austin at Texas, announcing Monday it will hear an appeal by Fisher, for a second time, this fall.

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Luke Visconti, CEO: White Affirmative Action and Ferguson

The complete lack of accountability in Ferguson is a textbook example of white affirmative action.

In my opinion, the complete lack of accountability in the aftermath of Ferguson is an assault on the senses, but it is a teachable moment about the profound lack of accountability in white affirmative action. I coined the term white affirmative action as a counterpoint to the civil-rights-era affirmative action, which opened jobs that were closed to anyone but white people. We get dozens of emails a month from people deriding affirmative action to justify their own lack of success. This erroneous perception is a cherished, commonly held and self-comforting platitude among certain elements of the majority—just like Ronald Reagan's fictitious welfare queen and the "wilding" Central Park rapists (all of whom were innocent).

It is an amazing negative illumination of our society to note that a 6'4", 210-pound police officer with a car, badge, gun and backup on the way couldn't figure out a peaceful resolution to confronting two unarmed teenagers—but got to keep his job, until his resignation this weekend, facilitated by the system's conspiratorial process. And after more than three months of preparation, having all of the tricks handed to him by a prosecutor invested in the racist law enforcement that has existed in St. Louis environs for decades, he could not think of another thing to say other than to call Mike Brown, the teenager he shot to death more than 100 feet from his car, a "demon."

Shootist Wilson gets to resign his position (and collect more than $500,000 donated to him). The police chief gets to keep his job. The governor skates above it all after bumbling the first response to community outrage immediately after the killing, then doubling down on the same tactics to provoke yet more destruction in the community. The smirking prosecutor who presided over a law-enforcement community in St. Louis that preyed upon Black people—even though its own evidence showed that white people, on a percentage basis, had more criminal involvement—gets to keep his job. He knew he was on thin ice with this case, so he used the grand jury to avoid a trial in which the evidence would not have stood up. When he got the results he was looking for, he released the information—after a long, slow buildup—at 8 p.m. to allow the National Guard and militarized police to provoke people into the kind of response that would clear his subversion of justice off the front page.

Nobody in Officer Wilson's chain of command gets fired for allowing Wilson to clean off his own hands without supervision or photographs, to keep his gun after the killing and put it in an evidence bag by himself with no supervision, and to allow Wilson to submit a blank incident report.

It is an astounding cavalcade of incompetence, prosecutorial arrogance, callous indifference to Black life and self-righteous justification of repetitively using law-enforcement practices that were proven to be wrong. Yet for the police chief, the prosecutor, the governor and other assorted people—like the medical investigator (with 25 years' experience, no less) who couldn't take pictures because he had a camera with dead batteries and who decided not to take any measurements because "it was self-explanatory what happened. Somebody shot somebody"—get to keep their jobs. Nobody gets fired. Nobody goes to prison for malfeasance. Nobody even resigns in humiliation.

What's even more interesting to me is that the pattern of outright lies: The distance between Wilson and Brown, whether or not Wilson knew that Brown had shoplifted, even the videotape of the shoplifting incident is in question. But that pattern of lies doesn't scare white people—which, if you think about it, it should. What would you think your chances of justice would be if you got caught up in a crime investigation and there was no chain of evidence, the people charged with taking pictures and making measurements didn't do either, and the prosecutor was well known to be in the pocket of the police? Yet, it seems that most of the public would prefer to believe "It couldn't happen to me," that bumbling racist incompetence is OK, and Mike Brown is a "demon" and "deserved what he got." As detrimental as it is for white people, confronting reality is still too painful for this country.

I think it's fair to sum up the Ferguson disaster as "white affirmative action"—the traditionally practiced way for incompetent white people to attain and maintain positions they are clearly incompetent and unqualified to hold. It's assumed that the police chief, prosecutor, medical examiner and governor are competent, and despite a repetitive drumbeat of news that shows they are not, the popular press goes after the victim and the people provoked. "Why are these people destroying their neighborhood?"

Court Upholds Race in College Admissions

In a case returned by the Supreme Court, a Texas court has again ruled that race can be used as a consideration in college admissions.

By Chris Hoenig

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U. of Michigan Students Aim to Take Control of School's Diversity Without Affirmative Action

How is it that a university just miles away from Detroit only has 4.6 percent Black student enrollment?

By Julissa Catalan 

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Ask the White Guy: Do 'Those People' Not Value Hard Work and the Right Priorities Enough?

Why we haven't seen as much progress as we should have seen from MLK's work.

Luke Visconti's Ask the White Guy column is a top draw on Visconti, the founder and CEO of DiversityInc, is a nationally recognized leader in diversity management. In his popular column, readers who ask Visconti tough questions about race/culture, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability and age can expect smart, direct and disarmingly frank answers.

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