I was considering making this an ethics quiz, but it would be too easy: of course graduate programs that practice gender and racial discrimination in admission are unethical, though the dead-ethics alarms administrators who approve such monstrosities apparently don’t think so. Thus this is an inquiry into who, what, when, and why, all addressing the question of how this could happen?
Perhaps I should rephrase that slightly: How the hell could this happen?
Yum! Brands, which owns Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and KFC, operated a franchise owner training and business degree program at two universities, the University of Louisville (where Jack Marshall Sr. attended college until he transferred) and Howard University. The Yum! Franchise Accelerator MBA was limited, according to its materials, to “underrepresented people of color and women.” Following a federal investigation, the Office for Civil Rights at the Department of Education announced in a letter last week that the two universities had agreed to make the “Yum! Franchise Accelerator Fellowship is open to all eligible students regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age.”
The Civil Rights Act of 1964 forbid discrimination on the basis of race at institutions that receive federal funding. Did the two institutions miss it? It was in all the papers. Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 forbids discrimination on the basis of sex. This, I thought, was also rather well-publicized. Not enough, apparently.
And yet here we are, or were.
Question #1: “What’s going on here?” Did the two universities really think this was OK, because the right people were being discriminated against? Did they assume that because the Biden Administration has reveled in racial and gender discrimination in so many ways already, this would be shrugged off as just one more virtuous “diversity, equity and )inclusion” initiative? Do they (and others like them in universities all over the nation really think there is good discrimination on the basis of race and gender?
Question #2: How did the universities reach this crazy decision? Did they not consult any lawyers? What competent lawyer would not say, “Uh, folks? This is illegal. Sorry!” within seconds of looking at the criteria for entering the program?
Question #3: WHY did they do this, or attempt to? Was it just to get money from Yum! Brands? ( The Marshall family will henceforth boycott the products of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, as we do not patronize unequivocally racist and sexist corporations whose activities show prejudice against the groups of which we are involuntary members.)
Question #4: WHO are these people? Are they racists? Are they Black Lives Matter supporters who feel it necessary to show that for the foreseeable future black lives must matter more than white lives? Do they have a satisfactory explanation, and if they don’t—and there isn’t one–will they be kicked to the curb, or do the alums of these schools favor illegal discrimination as long as it’s aimed at the groups that deserve to be discriminated against?
Question #5: WHEN did the American Left suddenly abandon the principles of equal treatment and fairness? When did the ringing language of Brown v. Board of Education—“the doctrine of ‘separate but equal’ has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal”—become less than a cornerstone of our educational philosophy and something to be parsed and stepped around by…progressives? After all, that opinion was about public schools, and specified facilities, not programs. (Isn’t it remarkable that the intercession of the DOE would be necessary while Democrats are fearmongering that a conservative Supreme Court might overrule Brown?)
I don’t understand.