Michigan Civil Rights Initiative overturned by federal appeals court

Jonathan W. writes:

The reasoning in this case is the poorest I’ve ever seen. How did the Equal Protection clause go from allowing race-based affirmative action to prohibiting a state from amending its constitution to prohibit affirmative action in that state? And to think that most conservatives still view the federal judiciary as a legitimate institution. It hasn’t been moral or legitimate for decades now, and conservatives who think we can play by the rules and effect change are hopelessly deluding themselves.

LA replies:

The Volokh Conspiracy quotes the key passage in the decision (which, adding injury to injury, uses “she” as the generic pronoun, so that not only do you have to stumble your way through the perverted reasoning, but have to keep stumbling over the word “she”):

A student seeking to have her family’s alumni connections considered in her application to one of Michigan’s esteemed public universities could do one of four things to have the school adopt a legacy-conscious admissions policy: she could lobby the admissions committee, she could petition the leadership of the university, she could seek to influence the school’s governing board, or, as a measure of last resort, she could initiate a statewide campaign to alter the state’s constitution. The same cannot be said for a black student seeking the adoption of a constitutionally permissible race-conscious admissions policy. That student could do only one thing to effect change: she could attempt to amend the Michigan Constitution—a lengthy, expensive, and arduous process—to repeal the consequences of Proposal 2. The existence of such a comparative structural burden undermines the Equal Protection Clause’s guarantee that all citizens ought to have equal access to the tools of political change.

The Constitution has passed beyond any recognizable meaning of words. The Equal Protection Clause now means that if it’s harder for a black to get the particular thing he wants than for a white to get the particular thing he wants, then the black is being denied equal protection. A country in which such argumentation has the force of law is a joke.

A friend also called me on the phone about the Michigan decision and said, “How fast can we go down? The toilet has already flushed.”

Posted by Lawrence Auster at November 16, 2012 01:56 PM | Send

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