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peacock's picture

The high school that I went to fostered a pretty competitive atmosphere that lasted for a majority of the time I spent there, but during senior year, when college acceptances were pouring in (or not), it reached a point of certain unsavoriness. As students of color began receiving seats in prestigious colleges, many comments were being made about the "unfair advantages of affirmative action," and many were scornful of the opportunities these students had been given. After reading Sue, I understand that this was a pretty bad microaggression and that it was undermining the ability of students of color to perform highly in academics, but it went rather unchecked at the time; I've always been interested in the topic of affirmative action, and that experience is something I've always kept in the back of my mind.


jccohen's picture

'unfair advantages'


This college acceptance thing is a particularly edgy area: since most students are feeling vulnerable/anxious themselves, under a lot of pressure, etc., this seems a likely time for some students - in this case mainstream students - to undermine others' recognition in this area.  So 'affirmative action' can cover a set of assumptions that of course diminishes individuals, achievement, inequities...  Did the school address this in any way?  How could you imagine the school/a teacher/a counselor addressing this in a way that would open up the important issues here?