[eDebate] FWD: Brown, Affirmative Action & 'overturning' SC decisions

Ede Warner ewarner
Wed May 24 10:56:32 CDT 2006

Most of these criticism just dictate direction of a topic.  The nature
of a race-related resolution needs to call for a liberal action to
combat the roll back of deseg and aff axn.  Instead of overturn, we
might consider a direction towards the outcome:  increasing racial
integration in one or more areas; increasing race-based initiatives. 
That may work with a mechanism of establishing a new precedent.  Instead
of overturning a decision, can a affirmative establish a landmark
precedent in some areas.
All of this on Brown just means the topic goes the other way. 
Resolved: That the Supreme Court should re-establish Brown vs. Board of
Education as the precedent for racial desegregation in education.  OR
overturn one of the cases that has eviscerated Brown like Miliken.
As far as the multidirectionality of Aff Axn cases, seems like wordings
could mandate affirmative action in education.
An area topic that might accomplish all of this:
Resolved:  That the Supreme Court estalish a new landmark precedent for
increasing racial integregation through affirmative action or
I'm teaching 3 hours a day (I'm in class as we speak) in May so it's
unlikely that I'll be able to do a lot of research prior to next week. 
But I'm willing toss out ideas and do what I can, deferring to the fine
research skills of friends like Professor D-money Breshears..

>>> Steve Mancuso spmancuso at aol.com> 5/24/2006 11:11 AM >>

David Breshears asked me to post this for him:

  Brown v. Board of Education is all but dead.  The Court has abandoned

all pretenses of enforcing desegregation orders, and school districts 
across the country are resegregating.  Busing programs have been 
abandoned, majority minority schools have been (re)created, and all of

this has been accomplished without overturning Brown. 

  I don't think most people realize how rare an actual overturning of 
past precedent occurs.  For example, y'all do realize that Brown v. 
Board of Education did not actually overturn Plessy v. Ferguson, 
right?  Plessy is still technically "good law," except insofar as it is

contradicted by the ruling in Brown.  Not the same as being 
overturned.  Similarly, the Court will allow  the resegregation of 
society along racial lines, and is in fact doing just that right now, 
but they will do so without touching Brown.  In spite of its practical

irrelevance, the Brown decision still holds some symbolic value, as 
evidenced by Dr. Warner's citation of the numerous homages & tributes 
that marked the occasion of its fiftieth anniversary a few years back. 

Still, for all that, the decision is largely moribund.

  America's educational system is more segregated now than at any time

during the past half century.  Ironically, schools in the South are 
slightly more likely to be desegregated than those in the North, but 
even this is starting to change.  In the wake of Milliken v. Bradley, 
Missouri v. Jenkins, Board of Ed. OKC v. Dowell, etc., the educational

desegregation project has come to a close.  I'm not sure if this helps

or hurts Dr. Warner's suggestion that overturning Brown be considered 
by the topic  committee, but it's a fact that needs to be considered.

  As far as affirmative action goes, and I haven't followed the 
discussion on eDebate at all, so my apologies if this is redundant, but

overturning any of the recent SC decisions regarding affirmative action

would create a bidirectional topic.  The majority opinions in each of 
these cases recognized the possibility of an affirmative action program

that passed strict scrutiny, but invalidated each specific instance 
under consideration as not sufficiently narrowly tailored to pass 
muster.  So, overturning Grutter or Gratz could entail abandoning the 
strict scrutiny test (no more strict scrutiny for "reverse" 
discrimination), thus allowing broad-based affirmative action, or 
rejecting the idea that any program could pass such a test, thus 
eliminating any race-based affirmative action.  Again, apologies if 
this is redundant, but I have no intention of reading through all the 
aff  action posts just to see if this point has already been made.


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