10 percent admissions plan allows equality

UC Berkeley should adopt affirmative action plan similar to University of Texas


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BAMN agrees with UC President Mark Yudof, the other UC chancellors and other university administrations nationwide who have taken a stand in defense of the University of Texas affirmative action plan.

The Daily Californian editorial from Aug. 20 ignores the entire reality of the resegregation of the UC Berkeley campus over the past 14 years in favor of the dishonest and cynical arguments of the white plaintiffs in this case who seek to create a separate white privilege track at the expense of meritorious and deserving black, Latina/o and Native American students. This is a step backward for the Daily Cal’s editorial board and signals the need for students to demand a student newspaper that stands on the truth and speaks for the progressive and anti-racist sentiments of the vast majority of UC students.

The effect of ending affirmative action is clearer in California than anywhere else. An entire generation of talented Latino, black, and other underrepresented minority youth have been denied entrance to California’s flagship universities. Affirmative action measures are desegregation programs for higher education. Without them, the resegregation of the finest universities are rapid and deep as administrations hide behind racist standardized tests to justify a new Jim Crow admissions policy.

If the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down UT Austin’s modest and necessary affirmative action plan, it will effect a substantial blow to the progress toward integration and equal opportunity that UT has achieved. It would convert the 14th Amendment, this nation’s pledge to eradicate racial caste, into the opposite of what it was intended to be.

If the U.S. Supreme Court bans UT Austin’s affirmative action plan, it will have banned the only measure effectively countering the privilege inherent in this holistic-admissions track. The court will convert it into a blatant white-privilege track for those wealthy, white Texas students who expressly do not qualify under UT Austin’s primary admissions system.

BAMN agrees with the UC administration in defending the UT affirmative action plan, but BAMN additionally defends the Top Ten Percent Plan and calls for its expansion within Texas and across the nation. The success Texas has achieved with the Ten Percent plan makes it a model for the kind of plan that should be used now throughout the UC system to counter the devastating effects of Proposition 209.

Unlike any other party that is defending UT, BAMN wholeheartedly defends both admissions policies that the university currently uses. UT Austin, UT’s flagship campus, incorporates two complementary admissions tracks. Seventy-five percent of its students are admitted through the Ten Percent plan. Twenty-five percent of its students are admitted through a holistic review process, similar to that used by UC Berkeley and other UC campuses. However, in addition to the host of factors such as GPA, standardized test scores, essays and educational disadvantage, UT Austin’s holistic plan also takes into account race in order to counteract the white preference inherent in such a plan in the absence of affirmative action.

BAMN understands that, whatever the outcome of the present case before the Supreme Court, the right-wing organizations that are currently challenging UT Austin’s affirmative plan are using this case to attack Texas’ Ten Percent plan, which is even more egalitarian, successful and popular.

UT Austin’s Ten Percent plan is its primary admission plan and accounts for 75 percent of its admissions. This plan guarantees admission to the top 10 percent of each high school’s graduating class. This determination is made entirely on the basis of grades and disregards standardized test scores. The Ten Percent plan is, by far, the most democratic, equal, fair and transparent admissions system of any elite university in the country. The traditional methods used by university administrations give white, wealthy applicants and those who attend privileged majority-white high schools a huge unearned advantage. The Ten Percent plan has broadened educational opportunity in Texas.

Because of the Ten Percent plan, large numbers of gifted and hard-working students from poor and Latina/o, black, Native American and immigrant communities, as well as  from poor, rural white communities, who never even would have applied to UT Austin under a conventional admissions system even with affirmative action have been able to utilize the educational opportunities UT Austin provides to develop themselves, let their talents shine and uplift the dignity and pride of their embattled and struggling communities.

The Ten Percent plan has led to an increase in Latina/o and black student enrollment. It also has meant that schools that had sent no students to UT Austin before can be represented: Between 1996 and 2004, the number of high schools represented in UT Austin’s freshman class rose from 616 to 815.

The academic performance of UT Austin’s students has increased. A 2003 UT report showed that “Ten Percent” students had higher GPAs at UT Austin than non-Ten Percent students whose SAT scores were 200 to 300 points higher.

The Ten Percent plan has challenged and proven wrong all the degrading and false stereotypes of black and brown inferiority still far too prevalent in this society. The pervasive wrong and false assumption that students who attend more academically rigorous or better resourced schools are a priori more gifted, talented or meritorious than the top-performing students who go to poor, overcrowded and dangerous segregated inner-city high schools or their largely white rural equivalents in East Texas is being stripped of legitimacy every day in a multitude of classrooms at UT Austin.

Another positive outcome is that, for the first time in Texas’ history, East Texas, predominantly rural, poor and white and infamous for its Ku Klux Klan activities into the 1980s, has formed an alliance with Texas’ black and Latina/o communities in defending the continued use of the Ten Percent plan.

California and Texas point the way for the future of America. In this affirmative action case and in the upcoming more crucial struggle that will soon develop in Texas over its Ten Percent plan, it is incumbent that UC Berkeley students continue giving leadership to the new national student movement that we have helped give birth to. We must continue to take mass, collective action to defend public education and its promise of equality, integration and democracy. This means, centrally and most immediately, fighting to double underrepresented minority student enrollment and to make the DREAM Act and citizenship real for undocumented immigrant students on our campus. We can set the tone for progress so that California and Texas do not become the strongholds of the new Jim Crow. We can ensure that our states become birthplaces for a new phase in the emerging global struggle for equality and freedom.

Ronald Cruz is a UC Berkeley School of Law alum and, as an attorney for BAMN, submitted an amicus brief in Fisher v. Texas.

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  • Craig John Alimo

    go to this website http://mep.berkeley.edu/hot/archive/bakesale for more info and resources on affirmative action

  • Oogy Boogy

    Don’t get too butthurt, UC schools are not that great, anyhow. If you wanna complain about shit, how about California being 48th in education despite having 1 in every 8 youths attending school here. Are you really surprised? That’s why you’re not getting into these schools; not because you’re (insert race/ethnicity here) but because your damn primary/secondary school sucked and you did too, subsequently speaking.

  • andrewsu

    It was the Black Student Union that brought the anti-Jewish/Asian/white/gay hate group to campus where very anti-semetic books were sold and anti-Asian and Jewish speech were made. Now they want to steal what I’ve worked for. Louis Farrakhan once called Jews and Asians “bloodsuckers”. It’s quite obvious who the bloodsuckers are. If blacks hadn’t spent the better part of 50 years harrassing the hell out of every other group and demonizing them they wouldn’t need a hand out or up, or whatever you want to call it. AA is nothing but an academic mugging. If blacks want to dispel racist stereotypes why not put more effort into working then figuring out how to get something you haven’t earned?

    • Calipenguin

      We have to be careful not to paint with an overly broad brush. The BSU may have been taken over by Muslims but that doesn’t mean all Blacks identify with Farrakhan’s version of Islam. Farrakhan’s followers even attack Muslim immigrants from the Middle East who open liquor stores. Ironically Farrakhan said “The white liberal differs from the white conservative only in one way. The liberal is more deceitful than the conservative. The liberal is more hypocritical than the conservative.” Farrakhan wants Blacks to lift themselves out of poverty instead of relying on white liberals, which is a good argument against affirmative action. Farrakhan wants to pit all Blacks against Asian, white, and particularly Jewish achievers, but we must not sink to his level.

  • reztips

    Ronald McDonald Cruz claims to decry racism and declares the BAMN Bowl Action Movement’s opposition to bigotry. Nevertheless, BAMN demonstrated black racism in the form of overt anti-Semitism by supporting the invitation of that scumbag Louis Fart-His-Can to speak at Cal (in conjunction with the also bigoted BSU and Jew hating MSU). So should we support the admission of others to campus who are vulnerable to supporting such bigotry?

  • reztips

    Ronald McDonald Cruz, attorney for BAMN-aka the Bowel Action Movement-is one genuine arrogant anal passage. He wants “Cruz Control” over admissions–a bigoted process which would hurt deserving Asian and Caucasian students to benefit less deserving black and Latino students.

    And Cruz has the temerity to rap the DC, arrogantly writing that “students should demand a student newspaper that stands on the truth and speaks for the progressive sentiments of the vast majority of students.” Of course, under Cruz Control, he will be happy to personally define the “truth” his proposed student paper stands for.

    Always the comedian, Cruz calls for a paper representing the “progressive sentiments” of the student majority. Well, Ronald Mc, I don’t know what you’ve been smoking but the “progressive sentiments” your BAMN bowel movement has been expressing over the years would fall on decidedly unsympathetic ears when it comes to most Asian and White students at Cal and even some fair-minded blacks and Hispanics.

    Methinks Ronald McDonald has learned to promulgate propaganda by channeling the Goebbels heritage he has doubtless learned in various ethnic studies courses…

  • I_h8_disqus

    Equality of admittance should not be the goal. Success should be the goal. Berkeley and UCLA should not be the targets of affirmative action. During the years of affirmative action for these two universities, graduation rates for blacks and Latinos were horrendous. We need to recognize that there is a huge system of other UC, California state colleges, and community colleges that are admitting large amounts of blacks and Latinos, and those groups are graduating from those schools. More important than having the same racial diversity at every campus is that every student gets the education that helps them. A black graduate from Laney and Cal State East Bay is better than a black student who dropped out of Cal.

  • Daniel

    Affirmative Action is racist.

    People who support Affirmative Action are racists.

    • Guest

      Agreed, and he also spreads misinformation. For example….
      “The pervasive wrong and false assumption that students who attend more
      academically rigorous or better resourced schools are a priori more
      gifted, talented or meritorious than the top-performing students who go
      to poor, overcrowded and dangerous segregated inner-city high schools or
      their largely white rural equivalents in East Texas is being stripped
      of legitimacy every day in a multitude of classrooms at UT Austin.”
      UC already knows this is not so in California just as it is not so in Texas. The UC GPA of students is directly related to the API of the high school. More competitive high schools, higher API, have higher UC GPA’s.

      • libsrclowns

        What evidence do we have that equality improves the education at Cal.
        OK, I see, NONE, ZIP, NADA. This equality in admissions, AKA, reverse discrimination, is BS

      • Leo Cruz

        I looked at the table that you referred me to. it showed that 2003 enrollees who came from API schools ranked 9-10 who graduated by 2008 ( if I am correct in my interpretation ) had a GPA by graduation time of 3.17. For 2003 enrollees from schools with API of 3-4, the GPA by graduation time was a 3.04 We are talking about students systemwide not by individual campus.

        So the gap for mean GPAs for the 2 groups was .13. We know that a mean is the center of gravity of population of a sample. Honestly a difference of .13 is not that impressive to me. The gap can even be wider by individual campus, in the case of Berkeley for example. There are may factors that affect the mean GPA of a student sample such as kind of courses taken, field of study etc. If your object is to make the UC take more students from schools with higher API such as schools with API of 9-10, then you are not going to win my sympathy. There are outliers from both groups which basically says the 2 groups overlap each other in terms of individual GPAs , not mean GPAs What I should be concerned more is about the graduation rate of enrollees coming from schools with an API index scale of 1-4.

        If students coming from schools API of 1-4 had a graduation rate of 65 % in 6 years, then they should be required to have higher SAT scores as a condition of admissions.

        • Guest

          For UC overall, API 1-2(2003) had a UC Gpa of 2.95 at graduation. API 3-4(2003) 3.07 at graduation. API 9-10(2003) 3.23 at graduation.
          For Berkeley, API 1-2(2003) 3.08; API 3-4(2003) 3.24, API 9-10(2003) 3.44.
          Those are some fairly large differences in Gpa considering that UC and most universities require a minimum 3.0 Gpa to be admitted to graduate study. A significant percent of graduates enrolled from API 1-2 and 3-4 high schools are not eligible for graduate study.
          Note the differences in Gpa after freshman year for UC 2003 enrollees 2.56(1-2), 2.77(3-4), 3.05(9-10.)
          And at Berkeley for 2003 Enrollees: 2.78(1-2), 3.01(3-4), 3.34(9-10)
          Graduation Rates after 4,5, 6 years for 2003 UC Enrollees
          UC(1-2) : 40.0(4 years), 65.6(5 years), 70.2(6 years)
          UC(3-4) : 49.9(4 years), 73.6(5 years), 77.3(6 years)
          UC(9-10) : 62.9.0(4 years), 83.8(5 years), 87.2(6 years)
          Graduation Rates after 4,5, 6 years for 2003 Berkeley Enrollees
          Berkeley(1-2) : 43.2(4 years), 76.6(5 years), 81.7(6 years)
          Berkeley(1-2) : 57.3(4 years), 84.5(5 years), 88.0(6 years)
          Berkeley(1-2) : 74.2(4 years), 92.6(5 years), 94.5(6 years)
          A majority of UC eligible California high school students attend API 5-8 high schools and the AP classes in those schools can be every bit as competitive as at API 9-10 high schools yet those primarily lower middle and middle class students are very underrepresented at UC. There are close to twice as many enrollees from (API 9-10 + Private HS) as from (API 5-6 + API 7-8) high schools.

    • Kenny

      The intent of Affirmative Action is anti-racist. Affirmative Action is an attempts at tackling discrimination against people who have been historically marginalized including but not limited to women and people of color. In a world where everything is equitable, affirmative action wouldn’t make sense. However, discrimination still exists. Trayvon Martin, Danny Chen, Marcelo Lucero, and Shaima Alawadi were all people who met an ill fate as a result. In today’s job market, you can see the disparity of wages between males and females and you can further break this down to see disparities between different race groups. [http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s0653.pdf]

      Affirmative Action is not the end of all ends but until all people are allowed equal access and opportunity it is necessary. Affirmative Action makes the effort to level the playing field in places such as businesses and in this case education.

      API scores of high schools are actually based on standardized test [http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/ac/ap/apireports.asp] which have been studied to be unfavorable and bias to students of color. [http://www.hepg.org/her/abstract/769] The alternative is this: find an alternative to standardized testing that is most equitable and implement affirmative action in public schools (e.g. in California, repealing Prop 209 and in Texas passing the affirmative action measure).

      • leo cruz

        And how did the CASHEE and other high school exit exams ever become biased against Latinos and Blacks? If they are biased against Latino students , then they should also be biased against Asian students too. After all Asians and Latinos go to school side by side at Rosemead, El Monte, Arroyo, Baldwin Park, Mark Keppel, Alhambra, Montebello high schools etc. here in LA. Asians and blacks sit by side at Oakland High, Oakland Tech etc. too. I guess your definition of “people of color ” does not include Asians , huh ? Yes blacks on the average do get fewer callbacks for interviews and that is where BAMN should focus its energy on , at job discrimination in the workplace, not on college admissions.. BAMN has a wrong set of priorities.

      • Stan De San Diego

        “The intent of Affirmative Action is anti-racist.”

        Intentions mean nothing. The process involves taking race into account, therefore it’s racist by nature.

        “Affirmative Action is not the end of all ends but until all people are allowed equal access and opportunity it is necessary.”

        Equal opportunity does not always result in equal outcome. Why don’t you learn to deal with the real causes instead of masking the symptoms?

  • guest

    In the category “things you’ll read once in a decade”:
    BAMN agrees with UC President Mark Yudof

  • reader
  • reztips

    BAMN=Bigoted Asswipe Mental Neanderthals…

  • leo cruz

    I am still wondering as to how a Pilipino kid like Ron got entangled with this outfit called BAMN . Jobs for lawyers are scarce right now but to be a mouthpiece for an outfit that is more like a cult is well…………… we are both Pilipinos and share the same surname… Geez, unbelievable……

    The biggest problem of blacks in this country is discrimination in the workplace not in college admissions , that is where their energy should be directed at and not at college admissions. In case if you have noticed, whites are just the second largest racial group in the entire freshman class of the entire UC system with Asians coming in first. There are only 2 campuses in the UC system where whites are the largest racial group in the freshman class, and those 2 campuses are Santa Cruz and Santa Barbara.

    That is in contrast to the private universities in Cali be it Stanford, USC, the Claremont Colleges, Oxy etc. where whites are still the largest racial group in the freshman class.

    The reason for that is simple : whites are the biggest beneficiaries of preferences in the private universities while Latinos and Blacks are the biggest beneficiaries of preferences in the public schools, and Asians are getting the shaft in either system.

    Do you see the pattern emerging ? Even in NYC Asians have supplanted whites as the largest racial group in the freshman classes of the public schools in Manhattan be it CCNY in Harlem , Baruch or Hunter while whites dominate at NYU, Columbia and Fordham in their freshman classes that is. As always California sets the pattern and standards for the rest of the country.

    • Calipenguin

      Ron was probably recruited by the well-known Pilipina BAMN activist Yvette Felarca. Her father was abusive and alcoholic, her mother was too submissive, and her sister committed suicide, so she channels all that sadness and rage into a fight for social justice. The problem is, everybody to the right of BAMN looks like a target and I wouldn’t be surprised if BAMN has ties to Abu Sayyaf. What’s ironic about the whole BAMN situation is that the two most visible advocates, Yvette and Ron, are Asian. I assume they became leaders because they were more intelligent and credible than the rabble they represent. That means even when it comes to radical leftist protest, the Blacks and Latinos are being led by Asians.

      • Leo Cruz

        I’ll talk to you later, just wondering if you are a P-noy too unless you are from the Antarctic .. Interesting commentary, I do know that average GPA’s of Pinoys in high school are higher than that of whites.

      • reztips

        Bravo, calipenguin! That’s superb analysis and doubtless the crux of Cruz and Felarca’s motivation…

      • Leo Cruz

        I am not interested in the personal life of Ron and Yvette or anyone commenting on this board for that matter , I understand that Yvette is now working with the teachers union, probably to infect them with her ideological agenda. Ron and Yvette and people who share their bent for race prefeernces are just dead wrong. Preferences regardless of whatever kind be it legacies, preference for the children of the wealthy and famous, preferences for the children of the faculty and college administrators,”development cases”, geographical preferences , athletic, race etc.have 1 thing in common they have a tendency to benefit the wealthy rather than the poor.. Take for example the athletic preferences given at Harvard for its athletic teams be it lacrosse, ice hockey, wrestling, tennis,swimming, golf ( if they have one there ), crew or rowing basketball, football, soccer etc. have a predisposition to benefit people who are overwhelmingly white and wealthy. After all who can afford tennis and swimming lessons anyway ?

        I am of the opinion that athletic preferences should be limited to poor people. People who are admitted under any kind of a preference on the average do not perform as well in college compared to their peers who were not admitted without any kind of a preference. This problem persists even after college. On the average they are less likely to go to medical school, get doctorates in engineering and science, pass licensing exams etc.

        Being white and being wealthy is not such a great advantage either.According to the College Board the mean score of test takers in the state of New York who come from families making over $200k a year in the Math portion of the SAT was 594 . The mean score of Asian male test takers in California in the Math portion of the SAT was 592 . A family making over $200k a year would put them in the category of the richest Americans. Well I guess it sounds to me that being wealthy is really not much of an advantage in the more competetive public schools, unless of course you believe that all Asian male SAT test takers in California come from families making over $200k a year. That fact alone should sober up any New Yorker. This is data from the 2010-2011 testing cycle from the College Board. The mean SAT score of New York test takers from families making over $200k a year is 1167, try getting into Cal,UCLA or UCSD with a score like that and see what happens if you are an Asian or White and from a family making over $200k a year. It tells us that families getting into Harvard in that economic level are basically getting into the Ivies because of one kind of preference or another. After all more than half of applicants with with perfect SAT scores are denied admission at Harvard because of its vast system of preferences , something unlikely to happen at Berkeley.

        • leo cruz

          ” ,,,,, Families getting into Harvard,,,,,,, “, I meant students getting into Harvard from families making over $200k a year………

  • guest2

    Shouldn’t CA’s goal be to educate as many Californians who want to go to college? Does this state not have a three-tier college system? Why must there be AA for the flagship UC’s? Students that are accepted into the UC’s, CSU’s, or CC’s get admitted to where the individuals will have the BEST chance to succeed, given their educational background. If you want more minorities in the top-tier UC’s, then identify these students early and provide them with the educational support needed to compete & succeed for entrance into these top UC’s.

    Systemwide the absolute number of Latinos & other minorities has increased significantly. Isn’t this upward trend a good immediate goal?

  • gary

    Deleted my comment, Daily Cal? You’ll print garbage like this article yet censor the truth? Cowards.

  • gary

    shut the fuck up bamn. multiculturalism is the enemy of the “racial” equality you claim to support. disgusting.

    • I_h8_disqus

      There won’t be true achievement in certain racial groups until they break away from their toxic cultures. I grew up in an area that was very diverse ethnically, but very similar economically, lowest middle class, and intellectually, parents were not college educated. We were all in the same boat. However, the different ethnic groups had different cultures. You could see over the K-12 years how those different cultures caused certain groups like Asians and Caucasians to excel while other groups lagged seriously behind. Kids who had been just like each other in kindergarten were not at all similar by the time they graduated high school. It was really sickening.

  • AnOski

    Affirmative action IS racism. End of story.

  • leo cruz

    A press release was made by the UK Education Council a year or 2 years ago. According to the the Council , 79 % of poor Chinese immigrant kids in Britain did better in an average of 5 subjects compared to 63 % of middle class and wealthy white British kids in high school ( Form 9,10 or whatever their equivalent of high school over there ). According the same press release poor Bangladeshi immigrants did better also compared to middle class white British kids.

    Way back in the in the 1970’s Bangladesh was designated as the poorest country in the world because of a famine that hit it , there were even concerts given as a form of fundraising to alleviate the famine. So why should Mexicans be given preference in admissions at UCLA ? , unless of course they are willing to say that at one time Mexico or is right now the poorest country in world, is it ?

    Haiti is regarded as the poorest country in the Americas ( North and South as in the Civil War ), or maybe in the world. How come Haitians in the US do better on the average academically than native born blacks ? Just asking Ron….

    You see those white British kids have the same genes as our native WASPs over here in the US of A. Sounds to me that being white and being wealthy is not much of an advantage huh?, unless you go to Stanford or the Ivies and other privates like Swarthmore where whites are the main beneficiaries of their vast system of preferences of every kind. How low indeed the descendants of Willliam of Normandy and Elizabeth Tudor have fallen to that they are unable to compete with poor Chinese and Bangladeshi immigrants.
    Again UT Austin should root out those admitted under the 8 % rule who had lower grades and SAT scores and wealthier than applicants who were denied admission who had better grades and SAT scores and POORER.

    Do pass this along to your buddies on the left like Lani Guinier, Charles Ogletree, Bill Kidder, Eva Patterson and Chris Edley etc.

  • Grizzly from Cheyenne

    Who ? What ? Where ? When ? Basic Journalism 101. If I don’t know what BAMN is why should I care what they have to say ?

    • libsrclowns

      “The effect of ending affirmative action is clearer in California than anywhere else. An entire generation of talented Latino, black, and other underrepresented minority youth have been denied entrance to California’s flagship universities.”

      WTF, let them compete like whites and Asians do. This reverse discrimination is BS but typical thinking of Lib deadenders.

  • lol

    Why doesn’t BAMN focus on under performing k-12 and stop trying to force universities to admit unqualified students. O yeah its because BAMN is not about racial equality, they are about being anti-white. Funny how this article forgets about how successful the Asian American communities has been when it comes to education…do they also suffer from white privilege???

  • Jamal Ledasha Twaykon


  • 1776

    I can’t take seriously anyone who throws around the phrase white privilege and is an attorney for BAMN

    • Calipenguin

      Ronald speaks exactly the way he writes. I’m surprised he passed the California Bar Exam.

      • reztips

        Ronald McDonald doubtless got into Boalt via unannounced affirmative action and graduated by taking the legal equivalent of ethnic studies law courses…

  • reztips

    UT and other supporters of Affirmative Action are under the delusion that you can end discrimination by discriminating. UT and others believe that favoring African Americans and Hispanics by giving them a special dispensation over Asians and Caucasians is somehow fair. So much for the notion that America is a meritocracy if this exercise in racism is permitted to stand…

  • Calipenguin

    If UC Berkeley adopts the 10% plan of UT, then we would be just like UT. We would no longer be the higher ranked university. Such loss to our prestige would be a huge blow to California pride. Viva California!


    Ron, so after the 8 % rule is now impelemented at UT Austin, how about making sure that no one admitted under that rule was admitted in lieu of another applicant who had better grades and SAT scores and POORER . Surely there are many brilliant mathematicians and programmers over there at UT Austin who can write search algorithms with that object in mind from the admitted database. Then we can get rid of those people and admit the ones who had better grades and SAT scores and POORER. And that is an exercise in true charity and justice.