How Asians Will Save American Education

Tom Sweetnam
Sun, 26 Jan 2003 03:55:11 +0000

Five years ago I obtained transcripts for a PBS Firing Line special in which 
panelists from both sides of the issue discussed the looming demise of 
affirmative action in California (and now Michigan....hopefully). The series 
was timely in that sentiment brewed strongly amongst California's Asians to 
end race preferences in college admissions.

Asians voiced their consternation through lawsuits and social activism that 
helped generate an initiative which was voted into law four years ago, 
abolishing affirmative action considerations in college admissions and state 
hiring. I borrowed my figures for this article from those transcripts. Here 
is how California's affirmative action-based college admissions system 
looked in its swan song.

Admissions to UCLA in 1997 based strictly on academic merit:

Asian 54%

white 47%

Hispanic 5%

black 1.7%

Black applicants to UCLA stood better than a 98% chance that their admission 
would not be based on any consideration of academic ability. That same rule 
applied to 19 of 20 Mexican- Americans. Yet 54% of Chinese, Cambodian, 
Vietnamese, Indian, Pakistani, or other Asian students were considered for 
admission on their academic merits only. More than half of these people had 
to produce a high SAT score to get into UCLA. Why this anomaly then, if 
affirmative action deigns to help "minorities"?

Current racial metaphysics bases race favoritism on the historical record of 
discrimination against minorities and women, black people in particular. 
"Hispanics" are problematic, not only because they are the majority in 
California now, but because so many got here illegally or are the progeny of 
illegal aliens, so a history of discrimination in their case is a nebulous 
claim to say the least, especially since the vast majority of America's 
Hispanic population is quite new, most tracing their roots to Mexico within 
the past 50 years. Yet for many years, a child of illegal aliens from Mexico 
got into UCLA easier than a white student whose father was killed in action 
serving this nation in war. White liberals, blacks, and Hispanics never saw 
anything unfair in this setup, and always shouted down its detractors with 
charges of racism, right up until California's Asians confronted them with 
racial actuality.

Past discrimination is the legal justification for affirmative action in the 
United States. So it follows then, that Cambodian, Chinese, Taiwanese, 
Vietnamese, Indian, Malaysian, and Pakistani immigrants to the US have long 
perpetrated discrimination against American blacks, Hispanics, and 
women...correct? This is the only basis on which affirmative action could 
legally be used to discriminate against these Asians, because the other very 
obvious yet unspoken explanation for such racial profiling by universities 
is that they consider blacks and Hispanics to be the racial inferiors of all 
other ethnic groups by a very great margin. Such a thing could never be 
admitted officially of course.

Average discrepancy in SAT scores at UCLA between blacks & whites: 280 

Average discrepancy in SAT scores at UCLA between blacks and Asians: "well 
over" 300 points.

No mention was made by UCLA if these scores were "race normed", but my guess 
is that they probably were, so I contend that the real SAT score differences 
between blacks and whites averages at least 380 points, and I'll further 
speculate that a difference of 500 points or more is the average between 
blacks and Asians. This is how "race norming" and "centering" works:

Race norming and centering are processes whereby blacks and Hispanics are 
given handicaps in scoring because of presumed handicaps of "cultural bias". 
Black students for instance are given a handicap of 100 points on SAT scores 
right off the bat. Further "centering" or adjusting of scores may follow the 
actual test. For many years, the major complaint of black activists (mainly 
the NAACP) with SAT testing, is that such tests are "culturally biased". 
What this charge euphemistically refers to however, is that blacks have 
considerable difficulty with standard language praxis.

Blacks tend to fail miserably in areas of basic language skills testing. 
This "cultural bias" charge began to lose credibility however, after 
thousands of California's Asians, many of whom had only recently learned the 
English language or who spoke English as a second language, inevitably 
scored higher on SAT English tests than did blacks for whom English is a 
native tongue. In fact, Asians scored higher than blacks even after blacks 
were given their race norming or centering scoring handicaps.

The NAACP has also charged that SAT algebra and geometry sections might be 
considered culturally biased as well, since so few blacks go into the 
difficult pure sciences, life sciences, or engineering schools in college, 
and tend instead to migrate en masse into the humanities, thereby making 
subjects like math irrelevant to their college admissions qualification. In 
other words, the SAT carries much of the "cultural bias" stigma that it 
does, because English, algebra, and geometry have been indicted by the 
NAACP, many Hispanics, and white liberals as being racially biased 
constructs. An abstract construct like algebra for instance, can actually be 
racist, because Algebra is hostile toward black or Hispanic understanding, 
in that blacks and Hispanics as cultures are perfectly willing to grasp such 
a thing as algebra, but so few can, therefore Algebra is a construct of 
hostility toward cultural acceptance, and is considered "culturally biased" 
toward those cultures because of it. The same may be said of geometry.

If such back flips of logic are frightening, they should be, because such 
thinking goes a long way in explaining why American education today is a 
pathetic shadow of its former self. Thirty years ago, America began its 
great downward slide, it cultural "centering", seeking the lowest common 
denominator with which white liberal educators, blacks, and Hispanics might 
assuage themselves that a mainstream norm was being established in which no 
one's self-esteem would suffer. White liberals rationalized that blacks and 
Mexicans couldn't be brought up to a level of academic accomplishment 
considered standard at the time, so the entire system had to be dragged down 
to their level, to a far lower watered-down cultural norm. And that's 
exactly what we have today: a pathetic amalgam of alchemy, metaphysics, and 
pseudoscience passing itself off as academic empiricism, that starts in 
public school first grade and carries through to postdoctoral studies at 
Harvard University. Stupidity as an educational median, where self-esteem 
and cultural hegemony take precedence over anything resembling intellectual 
scrupulosity. It's a pretend system like that of the old Soviet Union, where 
the cynical maxim held that people pretended to work, and the state 
pretended to pay them. Here we pretend to educate, and students pretend they 
are educated.

California's Asians wouldn't hear of it however. They were too new on the 
landscape to buy into a sick system based on cognitive distortion and ethnic 
politics, a system that shouted down any of its former detractors as bigots 
and racists. It was California's Asians who began to deconstruct this sham 
called education. It was California's Asians who showed white liberals, 
blacks, and Hispanics what could be accomplished when people stuck to the 
basics of learning and spent their time reading books and doing physics 
problems instead of devoting their lives to bellowing at the top of their 
lungs while playing the race card. It was California's Asians who finally 
embarrassed a sick system into its inevitable first stage of collapse, and 
no doubt, if another old maxim can be believed, one that states "As goes 
California, so goes the world", it will be California's Asians who halt our 
national plunge into an abyss of ignorance, while teaching America what 
excellence in learning can really be all about.

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