Fourteenth Amendment Annotated
“All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
The 14th amendment allows for people to be treated equal to one another. It allows for people to pursue their own life, liberty, or property. The pursuit of these things is assumed by the last phrase of the first section, above quoted, of the 14th amendment namely equal protection of the laws. This discludes unequal treatment whether it be treating a person or people group as lessor then but it also includes treating any people group as greater or giving them privilege over all other people groups, this is not equal protection but instead super protection or special privilege. Affirmative action by definition breaks this rule. Up until this amendment whites were treated as 5/5 of a person while blacks were treated as 3 / 5 a vote. The amendment made it to where they were in principle on the same level legally. Affirmative action is a law or set of mindsets towards the law that says we can elevate certain people groups from the bottom and treat them like they are on top. This is what leads Thomas Sowell, previously mentioned famous economist, to believe that the burden of proof is on those who want to challenge the equality under the law that was set up by the 14th amendment.
Thomas Sowell says:
“‘I think that when one makes a profound change in a society, arousing enormous passions across the board, that the burden of proof should be on those who think that this is beneficial,’ he said. `I have been listening very carefully and have yet to hear the benefit to disadvantaged blacks that has been empirically discovered after affirmative action.’”
Not only is there not any empirical evidence that it helps blacks but Jason Riley (and many others) explain that it ironically makes things much harder on Blacks, this includes low performing blacks and most unfortunately of all high performing blacks. In this chapter we are going to try and put affirmative action and put it back in the closet of ideas and go back to the “equal protection of the laws.” world established by the fourteenth amendment.
After decades of Jim Crow Laws the white guilt of America had stacked up some serious offenses. This boiled over in the Civil Rights movement. As the president who should not have been president, Lyndon B. Johnson was only supposed to be the Vice President until John F. Kennedy was assassinated, it looks like it is show time for my big government self. He knew just like the big government politicians of the past that in order to guarantee something one must enforce it under law. The people wanted equal outcomes, he could not make them smarter, harder working, or aspire to be high value, but what he could do was manufacture a world that attempted to shortcut the work that is needed to have the same outcome as whites. Lyndon B. Johnson put it like this, “A year after the Civil Rights Act passed Lyndon Johnson announced that it was time for the “next and more profound stage of the battle,” which he described as a battle for “not just equality as a right and a theory but equality as a fact and equality as a result.” Like any dreamer, he wanted to sell the United States people a dream world where there would be no need to look around and see blacks unperforming. He supposedly had the great solution: white guilt, a cheat code to success namely handicapping everyone else.
Jason describes it like this,
“Equal outcomes may be a noble objective, but nothing in human history suggests that they are realistic. Different groups have different backgrounds and interests and skills and sensibilities. Success and failure are not randomly distributed. By moving the public-policy emphasis away from equal opportunity, where it belonged, and toward some fanciful notion of racially proportionate results, Johnson was laying the groundwork for a civil rights industry that to this day insists that racially disparate policy outcomes are proof of discrimination, regardless of the policy’s intentions.”
In order to get a different result for Blacks they just pretended that Blacks are more valuable than people of other skin tones. It really is not much different than the pretending that took place in slavery. In slavery people pretended that they owned another person, even though people can not actually own others since we all own ourself, and the one who gave up their own ownership pretended that they could or were actually able to give up their own ownership. They spent their whole lifetime essentially wearing a mask, like someone might on Halloween, pretending they are a person that exist but do not own themself. In the same way, affirmative action pretends like a person deserves a job or an acceptance at a college because of their skin tone. Slavery pretended that someone did not own themself because they had a certain melanin and came from a certain place in the world.
It is already bad enough that they pretended in a soft bigoted partialistic way that they could just intentionally make someone work in an environment and it actually worked to deliver those results (which is insulting enough), but they condescendingly and humiliatingly accepted these tokened positions and openings, and in the end it held them back more than if they would have just left them alone to find their own path to a school or job that actually fit their skill level and education level.
The conservative supreme court justice backs me up on the constitutionality of this when he says,
“In an earlier opinion, Adarand Constructors, Inc. v. Peña, which involved racial preferences for minority businesses, Thomas also took on affirmative-action do-gooders.
That these programs may have been motivated, in part, by good intentions cannot provide refuge from the principle that under our Constitution, the government may not make distinctions on the basis of race. As far as the Constitution is concerned, it is irrelevant whether a government’s racial classifications are drawn by those who wish to oppress a race or by those who have a sincere desire to help those thought to be disadvantaged.”
In case you are the type of person who does not care what bills are passed by dead men over a hundred years ago about how people in the future should conduct themselves then let's get to the evidence. As a case in point, the most liberal state in the Union banned Affirmative action in schools in Proposition 209.
Jason describes it here,
“In 2013 the New York Times ran a front-page story on the University of California system’s efforts to maintain a racially and ethnically diverse student body without using group quotas, which had been banned in the state seventeen years earlier. ‘California was one of the first states to abolish affirmative action, after voters approved Proposition 209 in 1996,’ wrote the Times. ‘Across the University of California system, Latinos fell to 12 percent of newly enrolled state residents in the mid-1990s from more than 15 percent, and blacks declined to 3 percent from 4 percent. At the most competitive campuses, at Berkeley and Los Angeles, the decline was much steeper.’”
Jason brings important comment on the New York Times discoveries, as he himself is a fellow seasoned journalist of over 20 years at the Wall Street Journal.
“Prior to the passage of Proposition 209, blacks and Hispanics in California were steered into schools where they were under-prepared relative to the other students. They were being “mismatched” to satisfy the cosmetic concerns of administrators, to embellish photographs in school brochures. “Diversity” was deemed more important than learning. Proponents of racial preferences weren’t overly concerned with whether these minorities actually graduated, and many of them didn’t (or only did so by switching to a less demanding major). After race preferences were banned, blacks and Hispanics were more likely to attend a school where they could handle the work, and as a result many more of them have flourished academically.
Yes, fewer minorities attended Berkeley and UCLA in the wake of the new policy, and instead matriculated at less selective places like UC Santa Cruz, but more minorities overall not only graduated, but obtained degrees in engineering and science. What’s more important? Once again empirical data show blacks doing better in the absence of a government policy originally put in place to help them. Once again the political left, which has a vested interest in convincing black people that group success is highly dependent on policies like affirmative action, has ignored or downplayed results at odds with its agenda.
Members of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights have noted the “extensive empirical research indicating that students who attend schools where their entering academic credentials put them in the bottom of the class are less likely to follow through with an ambition to major in science or engineering than similarly-credentialed students who attend schools where their credentials put them in the middle or top of the class. Affirmative action thus works to the detriment of its supposed beneficiaries.’ Furthermore, ‘students, regardless of race, are less likely to graduate from law school and pass the bar if they are the beneficiaries of preferential treatment in admissions than if they attend a law school at which their entering academic credentials are like the average student’s.’”
If one happens to actually graduate from these schools with degrees they barely were able to earn or for other degrees they had to settle for they take on another world of tokenism in the workforce. Their hard work is questioned once they get there. Even though they got the flash pass to the front of the line, the job market is not going to be as nice as the schools. A black man named Stephen Carter tells of being rejected into Harvard Law School until it was found out he was black and then everything changed. He was so upset that he ended up going to Yale instead of taking the pity hand out. Clarence Thomas went through a similar experience and once he left law school and tried to find employment he was put under scrutiny despite his hard earned grades and fancy degree. He says, “Now I knew what a law degree from Yale was worth when it bore the taint of racial preferences. I was humiliated.” Jason Riley puts it another way, “But the reality is that nobody who has any pride wants to be that “diversity” hire in the office or that token minority on campus, especially if it allows others to dismiss your accomplishments as having resulted from a tilted playing field.”
So it turns out that the Constitution and its amendments are not just some antiquated attempt to make a society that best protects the treasure, “life, liberty, or property,”. If one spends years working through college in a school they are underqualified for and gets a job they are underqualified for do you think that is good for them? The evidence says that it is not. The saddest thing about this is that each race's highest performing and intelligence level people play a huge role in inspiring their other black peers and younger peers that they too can be successful in anything they want. They do not want to be treated racistly (skin tone partiality) in order to get there. It is humiliating to be that person. Anyone with dignity does not want to work hard to always be questioned. Affirmative Action instead of making blacks rise up and be more respected in academia and in the workforce in the major fields of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) they are questioned every step of the way. Even the ones who choose to go to a school that is more their level have to be questioned even at that level because it is assumed the people who were able to get to that school would not have been able to go to that school if they were Asian, Mexican, or any other people group.
Instead of delivering the equality of outcome, they are just bumped up a little bit in a world of schools they are unable to rise to and setting up everyone with their same skin tone with a stigma. That stigma is logically warranted and unfortunately is not an equal outcome. They are the only group that has to experience that. Unfortunately this puts the stigma back on blacks that not only are they innately inferior but that they do not deserve to be where they are. This is creating an identity crisis in them that was not there before affirmative action. Before affirmative action blacks were not doing well but they knew they were not doing well because of their own limitations, not because someone had put them into situations that were past their particular level and hoped they were able to just swim instead of sink.
This leaves me with the moment where I get to quote my favorite quote about government intervention by one of my favorite economists, Milton Friedman, “One of the great mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results.” Lyndon B. Johnson had good intentions of trying to fix the racial divide, but like a doctor giving a bad prescription, the black community is experiencing a very terrible outbreak and reaction as a result of decades of stigma brought on by affirmative action.
Tim Bankes II
Tim is a Christian author. His worldview that informs his writing is Calvinist, Baptist, and Libertarian. His main series is his Christian picture book series, "About God for Kids", where he discusses the attributes of God in a way kids can digest. He also wrote a Christian Romance novel, libertarian book for beginners, and Christian coloring books. He graduated with a Bachelor's in Biblical Studies from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
He has written a book on freedom called “Are You Free” (If you are into listening to books I have it in audio also, Are You Free Audiobook )and he has written multiple children’s books about God. Be Sure to check out the podcast version of the blog, Labor for Truth Podcast. And check out “The Truth About” YouTube Channel. You can find his works at his amazon author page, https://amazon.com/author/timbankes. He even has a free digital ebook on how God is the creator. Get your free copy today at, Greater Creator .Also If you are into Christian Fiction, he has made his first book in his Futuristic Christian Fiction series free, Her Dying Wish