Tuesday, May 25, 2004

The newest trick

How to enshrine obviously illegal racial preferences -- localities are enacting legislation incorporating the 1965 United Nations International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, which has this dicey language: "special measures taken for the sole purpose of adequate advancement of certain racial or ethnic groups or individuals requiring such protection as may be necessary in order to ensure such groups or individuals equal enjoyment or exercise of human rights and fundamental freedoms shall not be deemed racial discrimination." This language clearly violates the Fourteenth Amendment, but the Senate enacted the treaty anyway. Now a judge in California has used it to uphold Berkeley's race-based admissions programs for public schools. This is the product of mixing two horribles: race-conscious decisionmaking and the new judiciary's love of UN conventions to subvert US law with which the judges disagree. Read about it here.

[Note: I originally stated that the challenged program was for UC-Berkeley, that statement is corrected above].

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