we discovered that the median SAT scores for black students who were admitted to the school were 230 points lower than for whites. What’s more, their high school grades lagged nearly a half point (on a four-point scale) behind those of whites. From the data we obtained under a Freedom of Information request, we calculated that the odds of being admitted if you were a black student with the same qualifications as a white applicant were 174-to-1. [Note: that report, and others, can be found under “Publications” on the CEO website linked above.]
Chavez calls the assumption underlying these preferences racist because they assume that blacks and Hispanics can’t be expected to meet the same standards as whites. She quotes a comment from former Rutgers president Frank Lawrence that is extreme only in its frankness:
“The average SAT [score] for African-Americans is 750. Do we set standards in the future so we don’t admit anybody? Or do we deal with a disadvantaged population that doesn’t have that genetic, hereditary background to have a higher average?” Mr. Lawrence nearly lost his job over the ensuing flap, but because he was such a staunch liberal and defender of affirmative action, he didn’t.