Both Sides Find Reason for Optimism After Latest Ruling on Texas Affirmative Action - Higher Education: When federal judges on Tuesday upheld the University of Texas’ use of race as a factor in college admissions, the decision sent two important signals. To proponents of affirmative action, the ruling was confirmation that diversity, particularly race and ethnicity, in education is an essential and constitutional goal. To the opponents who have waged a six-year battle to end the consideration of race, the decision means the fight will go on — again.
The 2-1 ruling by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in Fisher vs. The University of Texas at Austin was just the latest in a series of decisions resulting from orchestrated attacks on the use of race in college admissions. The latest decision also follows a Supreme Court ruling in April that upheld Michigan’s voter-mandated ban on affirmative action.
Leticia Smith-Evans, interim director of the education practice of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, said the organization will continue to advocate for inclusive school environments at all levels of higher education and that students have access to higher education. The NAACP LDF has represented the Black Student Alliance at the University of Texas and the Black Ex-Students of Texas in the Fisher case.