September 19, 2018

At UC Davis, does “diversity” discriminate against straight, white males?

Why Now is the time to consider owning gold
UC Davis

UC Davis is a microcosm, demonstrating how the Proggie “diversity” racket discriminates against people based upon their race, sex, and sexual orientation.

For the past many months, I’ve been working with my son on college applications. He is a decent student with good test scores and a somewhat interesting back story. Like many of his sex, he plans to major in a STEM subject. And when I say “of his sex” I mean it — in this gender fluid world, he’s a genetic male who knows he’s male and who likes girls.

In normal times, my son would have been a shoo-in for a pretty broad spectrum of American colleges, especially the University of California system, which California taxpayers fund and, once-upon-a-time, was meant to give priority to California residents. We do not live in normal times, though.

My son’s experience with UC Davis provides an interesting insight into just how bad things are for straight white males in America. Davis has been on my radar for decades. Back in the early 1970s, my sister’s high school boyfriend went there (ending forever their young romance) and loved it so much that he never left. Tim and his wife met there, got married there, and have since worked and raised their family in the town of Davis, outside of Sacramento.

In the decades forty years after Tim’s experience (ending around 2004), I’d frequently speak to students who attended, or who had just graduated from, UC Davis and they all had the same thing to say: They loved it. They liked the academic experience, they liked the social experience, and they liked Davis’s small-town feel, with the added perk that they could as easily travel to cosmopolitan San Francisco as to the majestic Sierras. It seemed to avoid the Leftist insanity at places such as UC Santa Cruz or UC Berkeley, the antisemitism of UC Riverside, and the economic elitism of UCLA. I always hoped that one or both of my kids would go there.

My older child had no interest in going there and is happy at an unnamed school my readers know as OELAC — the Obscenely Expensive Liberal Arts College. (You can read my posts on the subject here, here, here, and here.)

My son, though, was interested in UC Davis. He applied knowing that his GPA and test scores exceeded the averages of those admitted to UC Davis and, as I said, he has an interesting back story. He felt he had a reasonable chance of getting in.

As was the case with every single college to which he applied, my son had to write several essays as part of the application process. A significant number are aimed at eliciting from the student his or her place in the victim identity hierarchy. Here are some examples of questions that explicitly or implicitly ask students to describe themselves as members of a victim class. (My knee-jerk response to each question was “I was born a poor black child….”)

From the University of Washington, Seattle:

Our families and communities often define us and our individual worlds. Community might refer to your cultural group, extended family, religious group, neighborhood or school, sports team or club, co-workers, etc. Describe the world you come from and how you, as a product of it, might add to the diversity of the University of Washington. (Emphasis mine.)

From SMU:

SMU is a diverse learning environment shaped by the convergence of ideas and cultures. How will your unique experiences or background enhance the University, and how will you benefit from this community? (Emphasis mine.)

From the University of Oregon we get two not-so-subtle questions. The first tries to assign all students to victim or victimizer categories:

Describe an experience with discrimination, whether it was fighting against discrimination or recognizing your contribution to discriminating against a person or group. What did you learn from the experience? In what ways will you bring those lessons to the University of Oregon? (Emphasis mine.)

The second University of Oregon question abandons its oblique questioning and just comes out and says “Diversity!!”

The University of Oregon values difference, and we take pride in our diverse community. Please explain how you will share your experiences, values and interests with our community. In what ways can you imagine offering your support to others? (Emphasis mine.)

From University of North Carolina –  Chapel Hill we get a more subtle approach:

What about your background, or what perspective, belief, or experience, will help you contribute to the education of your classmates at UNC?

Gonzaga asks prospective students to help it find future SJWs to impart their wisdom:

As part of Gonzaga’s Presidential Speaker Series, the University brings to campus individuals whose scholarly research and commitment to social justice inspire students to action. Who would you choose to speak at Gonzaga and why? (Emphasis mine.)

In addition to the above college-specific essay prompts, most of the colleges to which my son applied belong to the “Common App.” This is a hub that allows students to enter only once (rather than for each college) basic information about themselves, such as their academic and extracurricular histories. It also requires students to take their pick from several essay prompts. (I think they have to answer three of the seven prompts.) The very first prompt is clearly aimed at those students bursting to tell how they fit into one or more Leftist identity boxes:

Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, please share you story.

“I was born a poor, gay, physically handicapped, nascent-transgender black child….”

My sister, when I told her about these essays, was confused. She said she had no memory of having to jump through all those hoops back in the 1970s. I agreed. Colleges back then pretty much wanted to know grades, extracurricular activities, and test scores. The essays tended to ask the kids to describe why they thought a particular college would be a good fit or what they hoped to do with their lives after college. We couldn’t get away with John F. Kennedy brevity, but we weren’t writing hundreds of words per college. (And of course, we applied to 2-4 colleges, not 9-15.) If I remember correctly, my essay probably had 15 sentences to JFK’s five:

What changed the old application system was the Supreme Court’s 1978 decision in Regents of the University of California v. Bakke, a case I wrote about at length here, since I think it explains the Hawaiian-born Obama’s decision to give himself a Kenyan identity. The short version of my post is that the Supreme Court held that colleges and universities could no longer use racial quotas favoring minorities, especially blacks. Obama, a terrible student in high school, had probably been counting on those quotas to get into a good college. With that option off the table, Obama borrowed from his father to invent an identity that would make him more attractive to schools still seeking black students.

In later Supreme Court decisions (such as Gratz v. Bollinger in 2003 and Fisher v. University of Texas in 2013), the Supreme Court essentially applauded those universities that reinstated quotas by a back door. These colleges insisted that they weren’t looking at race per se but were, instead, looking at diverse backgrounds and life experiences. Of course, somehow this much vaunted “diversity” never reached out to the farm kid in North Dakota who got up at 5 every morning to help with the animals and then walked 5 miles to school, all while maintaining a straight A average and heading the high school Republican Students Association. Instead, this “life experience” filter managed to raise up the same people who would have benefited from explicit quotas: blacks, Hispanics and, eventually, all manner of people from the rainbow LGBTQRSTUV etc. spectrum. Whites, Asians, and East Indians somehow lack “life experience.”

Incidentally, lest you think I’m making it up about the one-sidedness of this whole “diversity” shtick, pay attention to what the head of Yale’s Admission Office recently had to say:

In the Admissions Office, we receive countless questions every day: from prospective applicants and admitted students and parents and counselors and everyone in between. Most of these questions are fairly routine, but last week I received a question from an admitted student that for me, at least, was new:

“Will we get rescinded if we get suspended for engaging in a school walk-out to bring attention to the school shooting issue?”

[snip]

The answer is simple: Of course not.

To the students who have reached out to us with these concerns, we have made clear that they should feel free to participate in walk-out events to bring attention to this issue without fear of repercussion. Yale will NOT be rescinding anyone’s admission decision for participating in peaceful walkouts for this or other causes, regardless of any high school’s disciplinary policy. I, for one, will be cheering these students on from New Haven.

[snip]

For those students who come to Yale, we expect them to be versed in issues of social justice. We encourage them to be vocal when they see an opportunity for change in our institution and in the world. We value student voices on campus and we encourage discourse and action. To punish our applicants for doing just that would go against the very beliefs that make Yale such a special place to study. Instead, I support those high school students around the country and urge other educators and administrators to do the same.

I can assure you that any student who took time off from school to attend a pro-Second Amendment rally would not receive the same adulation. Yale’s message is clear: Only Progressives need apply.

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Even among Progressive applicants, though, there are limitations: If you have XY chromosomes, only small amounts of melanin, and like people with XX chromosomes, don’t get your hopes up when applying to most colleges. At least, that’s the lesson I’ve been learning of late.

With my son, for example, we were vaguely aware that it wasn’t great for my son’s chances that he is middle-class, white, male, and straight. However, we still thought he had a decent chance in the application process. After all, his grades and tests came in above UC Davis’s average scores, UC Davis has a 45.2% acceptance rate, and my son is a California resident. All those factors ought to have helped.

As it happened, my son didn’t get in. Normally, I would have shrugged and said it’s no big deal. After all, life is unfair. I’m philosophical about that.

If I’m normally philosophical about life’s unfairness, though, why am I writing this essay? I’m writing it because, when I wanted to show my son that his chances were bad from the start, notwithstanding his grades, I learned a great deal about the (unfair) facts of life in the second decade of the 21st century. I now share this information with you.

I began by learning that many American colleges and universities discriminate against men in admissions. Here are some male/female admission statistics from schools that children I know attend. This data is all drawn from AcceptanceRate.com.

If you take the time to check out the colleges I listed, you’ll see that the admissions rate at most schools reflects the applications rate: more girls than boys apply. Theoretically, then, schools can justify the disproportionate numbers by saying that it’s not fair to discriminate against female applicants. However, we know from Hollywood that every entity should inclusively reflect the greater society:

Proposed by University of Southern California professor Stacy Smith, who discussed the concept at length for the first time during a TED Talk in 2016, the inclusion rider is essentially an equity clause in a contract stipulating that the cast and crew of a film should accurately reflect the demography of the film’s location. If A-list actors choose to add inclusion riders to their contracts on a regular basis going forward, we could soon see, theoretically anyway, one solution for Hollywood’s historically notorious diversity problem.

An example, according to Smith, could necessitate that casting be 50 percent female, 40 percent underrepresented ethnic groups, 20 percent people with disabilities, and 5 percent LGBT people, to guarantee that “the world on-screen looks like the world around us.”

According to the CIA World Fact Book, in the college age group, there is roughly a 1:1 ratio between boys and girls. Since all of the above listed colleges have receive thousands more applications than they can admit, they could easily elevate the number of qualified young men they admit to achieve rough numerical parity that reflects the surrounding world. But they don’t, because that’s not the kind of parity these colleges want.

As to why fewer boys than girls apply, I have a few guesses. The first case is the modern American education, from kindergarten on up, is hostile to boys. They’re medicated to destroy their healthy boy energy, they’re denied playtime, and much of education is geared towards female interests. Action books attract boys, but from the time they’re little, they’re allowed only emotion books. Blech. No wonder they check out. When they move up in education, they’re told that they’re the instigators of great wrongs and that they should therefore shut up and listening. Talk about a hostile environment.

Boys are also more pragmatic, I think. When they realize that they’re going to have to go $200,000 in debt, they may think that there has to be a better way. Girls, however, are shorter-term thinkers (no, I’m not sexist; I’m a girl who grew up around other girls), and seem willing to assume $200,000 in debts to achieve that all-important Womyn’s Studies degree. Also, boys know that if high school was not a friendly environment, college is going to be worse. There, they’ll be persecuted in the classrooms, and prosecuted outside for having sex with the wrong drunken woman.

So, no, it’s no surprise that fewer boys than girls consider college a viable option today.

But it’s not just that my Little Bookworm sex that cuts against him in the application process. He’s white. That’s a no-no too. Just look at the Admission Department Head’s goals at U.C. Davis:

Here, she takes on leadership of freshman and transfer student recruitment and admissions at a time when the university is admitting what will be its largest entering class (9,500 students); developing and implementing new and expanded initiatives to recruit and retain historically underrepresented students; and seeking designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution. Lewis serves on the Chancellor’s Enrollment Policy Board and the Academic Senate Committee on Admissions and Enrollment. She oversees a staff of nearly 70.

[snip]

Over her more than 15-year career at UC Santa Cruz, Lewis played an important role in key initiatives to enroll a more diverse student body, increase enrollment of national and international students, and strive for Hispanic Serving Institution status. Lewis also was a leader on the UC Collaborative Recruitment Team, coordinating and streamlining innovative systemwide recruitment efforts.

Among her recent professional activities at UC Santa Cruz, Lewis was a member of the campus team focused on climate, recruitment and retention of African, Black and Caribbean students; the Police Chief’s Advisory Board; and the Chancellor’s Diversity Advisory Council focused on campus climate, culture and inclusion.

That is, the Admissions head is not trying to get the best candidates; she’s trying to get the most “diverse” candidates, according to a rubric that’s based almost entirely on race. Jim Crow would be proud.

Last Fall admission cycle before this one, she did make progress on her race-based results:

Among the admitted California freshmen, 28.7 percent are from historically underrepresented groups — African American, American Indian and Chicano/Latino. Last year, the traditionally underrepresented groups accounted for 26.1 percent.

  • African Americans increased 33.0 percent, from 494 to 657
  • American Indians increased 22.1 percent, from 95 to 116
  • Chicano/Latinos increased 29.1 percent, from 3,538 to 4,568

Among students admitted from California Community Colleges, 30.6 percent are from underrepresented groups, compared to 26.6 percent last year.

The increased representation of Chicano and Latino applicants among admitted freshman — now at 24.6 percent of admitted California residents — was also present among transfer students.

Among admitted California Community College students, there were 1,913 Chicano/Latinos — up 529, or 38.2 percent, from last year. They account for 24.3 percent of U.S. domestic students admitted from California Community Colleges

UC Davis aspires to become a designated HSI [Hispanic-service institution] by fall 2018-19. To be eligible for HSI designation by the U.S. Department of Education, the undergraduate student body must be at least 25 percent Hispanic. The designation provides the university opportunities for federal grant funding that supports a variety of programs aimed at student success.

A few points about the above: I have no problem with qualified Hispanics, blacks, and American Indians getting into college. I think anybody who qualifies should get in, provided that there’s room.

However, I suspect that there’s some post-Bakke affirmative action going on there — that is, these students get in based because they managed, through their essays, to identify themselves as a special interest group, something that outweighs their academic qualifications.

For the Left, perfectly proportionate representation is a numbers game unattached to merit. So, let’s talk California’s numbers.

California has 39,536,653 residents. Of those, 38.9% self-identify (for census purposes) as Hispanic. If that number is correct, , UC Davis still has a ways to go to meet its perfect proportional representation, regardless of academic qualifications.

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But you know what? I don’t think that number is correct. Let me explain why. According to my math, 38.9% of 39,536,653 is 15,379,758. That is, there are 15,379,758 Hispanics in California. However, we know that there are a little more than 3,000,000 illegal aliens in California, all but a small number of whom are Hispanic. That legal Hispanic population in California is therefore 12,379,758, or only 31% of the California population. In other words, UC Davis seems to have achieved, within a percentage point or so, proportional representation — but as it made clear, it wants more and whether someone is legally present in America is irrelevant.

Again, let me reiterate that I believe anyone who qualifies should be admitted, regardless of race, creed, country of origin (provided they or their forebearers legalized their presence in the U.S.), sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, etc. The only thing I ask is that they be admitted on the same terms as everyone else.

There is one thing that the U.C. system has done that I think is entirely appropriate: It holds spaces for the top 9% of all graduating high school students in California. This means that those students in struggling minority communities who nevertheless managed to focus on their academics have an open seat on campus. That’s entirely fair, because California students come from homes with California taxpayers. (Although, of course, in a majority Hispanic community, many of those families and students are here illegally and I do not believe they are entitled to an education at taxpayers’ expense. Offering that is an incentive to further illegal behavior.)

Speaking of foreign versus American students in California schools, UC Davis is very pleased that it has fewer every year:

UC Davis is scouring the globe to find its next students.

Among the nine University of California campuses that enrolls undergraduates, UC Davis admitted the highest number of international students for the upcoming school year, according to admissions data released Thursday.

Out of nearly 14,000 international applicants, UC Davis accepted 8,415 students, an admit rate of 60.4 percent. By comparison, 18,480 California residents were accepted from the 51,425 who applied – a success rate of 35.9 percent. The number of residents admitted was slightly down compared to 2016, in line with the overall trend at other campuses.

In recent years, UC leaders have come under fire for rapidly hiking international enrollment, sometimes at the expense of slots for in-state residents. UC officials have defended the policy, noting that out-of-state students pay an average of $40,182 in tuition and fees annually, which is an important source of revenue for the institution. In-state students pay $13,500 in tuition and fees and are subsidized by the state.

[snip]

UC Davis has doubled down on recruitment in China, the primary source of the international student body. Nearly 2,000 undergraduates from mainland China attended the campus in 2015, up from a mere 68 in 2009, according to university officials. The school has hired a recruiter that is based in Hong Kong. (Emphasis mine.)

I find UC’s concerns about in-state students laughable. Having the in-state students “subsidized by the state” is the whole point behind taxing California residents to pay for the U.C. system.

For the diversity mavens, though, U.C. Davis, a school that once took all comers, from the most qualified on down, is a dream come true:

This School has Superb Diversity Overall

We combine elements of ethnic, geographic, gender and age diversity to create a total diversity grade for every school.

Quite diverse across all factors, University of California – Davis is ranked #260 nationwide.

[snip]

Explore Ethnic Diversity at UC Davis

If available, the chart below will display ethnic diversity among the undergraduate students at UC Davis.

UC Davis boasts excellent ethnic diversity.

Incidentally, according to the Census Bureau, whites come in at 72.7% of California’s population. Therefore they are not proportionately represented at UC Davis. Again, if that’s because they’re not good enough to get in, so be it. I just think there’s social engineering going on here, and it’s going on at my child’s expense.

In addition to the fact that UC Davis admits whites at a much lower percentage than it does other groups, there is the fact that, as I stated above, men are admitted at lower rates than their representation in California would indicate. If one considers further that the male students admitted are spread throughout the entire ethnic spectrum listed above, the takeaway is that UC Davis is no place for white males.

And of course there’s the whole LGBTQRSTUV etc. issue when it comes to Davis. I cannot find statistics for the number of LGBTQ etc. students admitted to Davis. One ranking, however, rates it as the 23rd best college in America for LGBTQ etc. students:

The LGBTQIA Resource Center at UC Davis is a hub for LGBTQ resources, support, and events on-campus. Students at UC Davis can enroll in academic programs on sexuality studies or gender, sexuality, and women’s studies. They can also join the Rainbow Community, which is open to members of the LGBTQ community and their allies. This community explores identity and regularly covers issues facing the LGBTQ community.

The school’s Bi Visibility Project raises awareness around the nuances and politics of individuals who are bisexual, trisexual, pansexual, omnisexual, or other unlabeled sexualities and how they intersect with other identities. The LGBTQIA Resource Center also includes links to ally training programs, a list of staff and faculty members who are out, and places to report hate and bias incidents. Like other LGBTQ friendly colleges, UC Davis has a variety of gender-inclusive restrooms throughout its campus.

(You can see more data about what U.C. Davis offers the LGBTQ etc. student here.)

Being straight is another strike against my son.

The one thing that the Proggies haven’t thought of with their social justice engineering is that the whole thing can backfire spectacularly. Think about it:

The numbers indicate that slightly above average white, straight males, such as my son, have little to no chance of getting admitted to Davis. The number of white, straight males is so small that only the crème de la crème will make it, something that is true at many, if not most, campuses across America.

If that’s the case, it seems very likely that these straight, white males will start clustering at the very top of every college class. Their presence at those rarefied heights will do one of two things: Either make straight white males look superior, whether viewed by race, sex, or sexual orientation, or show up the sham that is affirmative action, which elevates unqualified students to places in which they will not thrive. It’s another example of social engineering that ultimately hurts those it’s meant to benefit.

One of the things I hate about the Left is its abiding commitment to the theory that two wrongs make a right. America’s racial discrimination, as well as its periodic bouts of discrimination based upon people’s sex, religion, or country of origin, and its simmering hostility in many circles to homosexuality, was wrong. The proper antidote to that wrong is to take away all artificial barriers to entry.

Race, creed, country of national origin, sex, sexual identity, etc., should not matter. They are superficial attributes over which any given individual has little control.

The real question every time should be whether a person meets objective standards. If they do, and if there’s space, they’re in.

Proggies, however, have gone for the revenge route. In their Proggie brains, because some long-ago straight, white, males once discriminated against people, my son must be treated unfairly.

Let me reiterate that it’s entirely possible that my son wouldn’t have gotten in to UC Davis under any circumstances. Every one of the thousands of applicants could well have been more academically qualified than he was. However, looking at the data, I can’t help but suspect that factors over which he has no control determined the outcome of his application.

One more thing: Although I can’t find data saying how many conservative faculty members and students there are at UC Davis, it’s worth noting that last year, the campus allowed violent hecklers to shut down Milo Yiannopoulos’s planned  speech there. That says something about both students and faculty.

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About Bookworm 854 Articles
Bookworm came late to conservativism but embraced it with passion. She's been blogging since 2004 about anything that captures her fancy -- and that's usually politics. Her blog's motto is "Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts."