East Bay students, teachers protest race-neutral admissions policies

Pro-affirmative action group By Any Means Necessary held a rally on Upper Sproul on Tuesday around noon.
Henry Ascencio/Staff
Pro-affirmative action group By Any Means Necessary held a rally on Upper Sproul on Tuesday around noon.

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A group of about 350 students and teachers from UC Berkeley as well as several middle and high schools in the East Bay denounced the university’s race-neutral admissions policies at a rally on campus Tuesday afternoon.

Organized by the activist group BAMN, the rally on Sproul Plaza featured teachers and students from the campus and other schools in Oakland and Berkeley who urged the university to adopt race-conscious admissions policies to increase the diversity of the student body.

Protesters carried signs that read “Affirmative Action” and “Education is a right.” They chanted, “Si se puede — yes we can,” and, “Educate — don’t segregate,” among other chants, while marching from the plaza to California Hall and back.

“I look around this (campus), and this does not resemble my community,” said Steven Wong, a senior at Skyline High School in Oakland, at the rally. “This must change.”

Wong was also at the BAMN-organized occupation of the campus registrar’s office in April, during which protesters called for the campus to double minority-student enrollment. Since then, the group has continued protesting the university’s lack of race-conscious admissions policies through various rallies and events on Sproul Plaza. Tuesday’s rally is the most recent in a series of protests.

Proposition 209, which voters passed in 1996, restricts the university from considering race in its admissions decisions.

“There are fewer black and Latino students at Berkeley than at private schools like Harvard and Stanford,” said Yvette Felarca, a BAMN organizer. “There are thousands of gifted and talented black and Latino students in California who are fully capable of getting accepted to Berkeley … UC Berkeley should double the number of black and Latino students.”

Four UCPD officers monitored Tuesday’s rally.

Contact Daniel Kwak at [email protected].

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Beineke/100000274878115 Steve Beineke

    Then I suggest Asians give up their admissions to double the black and latino students since Asians are over represented at UC unis. Start with Stephen Wong.

  • ConservativeVoice2009

    Berkeley needs a stronger limit ceiling for Asians. While whites continue to scream “foul” and urm continue to want in. Everybody wins.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S44FHKC2JIS3HFQNFWBGFWTIEU mark

    California is now 60% “minorities”, and that’s not counting the “undocumented”. If you narrow it to the age bracket relevant to admissions policy, it’s down to 28% white, and falling rapidly. By the strange logic of “affirmative action”, I guess the ultimate in “diversity” would be…no whites?!

  • truthdoe

    I have an idea.. can we protest these protests? I’m getting really fuckin’ tired of this bullshit.

  • endbias

    “There are thousands of gifted and talented black and Latino students in California who are fully capable of getting accepted to Berkeley … UC Berkeley should double the number of black and Latino students.”

    Wait, if there are that many, why aren’t they getting accepted? This bullshit really needs to stop.

  • guest

    There are a significant number of blacksand latinod who are admitted and offered full rides from private universities that need to boost their minority representation. Cal cannot afford to offer all those students full rides.

  • I_h8_disqus

    BAMN needs its own affirmative action plan. Their spokes persons, Yvette and Steven, aren’t under represented minorities.

  • Calipenguin

    “I look around this (campus), and this does not resemble my community,” said Steven Wong.

    Steven Wong, a Chinese guy, looks around Cal and thinks it does not resemble his community? How could he miss all the Asian students? He must live on Oakland’s International Ave. or maybe E. 14th Street.

  • Cal student

    If we admit more students based on race, wouldn’t that mean Berkeley’ll become racist?

    That graph is misleading. Of course, if a higher amount of URM applies, the percent admitted is going to level/even out. Pus, a higher URM percent doesn’t mean all are qualified.

    Personal Example:

    I’m Asian, but I came from a high school with 71% latino/chicanos, 4% African American, 4% Asian, 10% Pacific Islander/filipino, 4% white. My high school had a class of 600+ students but 200+ dropped/went to continuation high school by the end of their sophomore year because they couldn’t keep up in class. By the end of senior year, there were only 20-40 students taking AP/IB classes and 7-12 IB students w/ 7 out of 12 IB students are Asians/pacific islander/filipino.

    Even with that huge percent of URM from my school, hardly anyone of them applied to Berkeley and from those who did and got accepted, they didn’t seem to like Berkeley: one declined and decided to go to a community college, two to three chose USC/UCLA over Berkeley.. etc. Just for reference, about 10-11 students (of all race) got accepted to Berkeley during my year.

    For URMs at my school, it seemed that it was easier for them to get into Berkeley. The one who declined and chose community college actually didn’t take many AP/IB classes, but he had straight As from honors classes and was involved on campus. I know many Asians/Filipinos who took more AP and honors classes, also got straight A’s, and was involved with campus activities/sports, but they didn’t get accepted by Berkeley. Actually (food for thought), the URM’s at my school are not considered the minorities. They are the majority and the Asians/White were the minorities.

    I would tell the minorities to take more honors/AP/IB classes, get more involved with school, and become more competitive. There are obviously other reasons that perhaps had impede the URMs from becoming more competitive (family, income, values ) but the bottom line is it’s NOT Berkeley’s fault.

    • Cal student

      Sorry for the spelling/grammar errors. I didn’t proofread.

      • isela

        it’s funny how they didn’t attack you for your spelling and grammar mistakes…

        • Cal student

          Idk. Maybe, I admitted my mistake, beforehand? Although, this is a forum and spellings/grammar errors don’t really matter, I know there will always be people making a fuss about it.

          • Stan De San Diego

            Don’t sweat it. We know your mistakes are genuine, not a result of ignorance.

        • Stan De San Diego

          That’s because unlike you, he REALIZED he made mistakes, and his posts for the most part are well thought out and coherent. On the other hand, you are too ignorant to realize that there’s this thing on your computer called a shift key, that allows you to type capital letters when required, such as for proper names, the beginning of a sentence, and the occasional (to be used sparingly) emphasis on a given word.

        • Boo

          Well, Cal student is a whiny little bitch, that’s why you got it and he didn’t.

          • Stan De San Diego

            Grow up.

    • isela

      i agree that race isn’t the only factor. but i think some people (like me) question why uc berkeley isn’t as diverse as i guess it could be? i believe institutional racism still exists. and of course there were many policies and laws put in place to rectify this…problem, but is that enough? also we must keep in mind the question of who’s responsibility is it to stop this sort of thing from happening? this makes this topic difficult to discuss. is it the individual? the parents? the schools? communities? the districts? the government? etc. oh, and also the question of meritocracy…is it a myth? many people believe so and are questioning the meritocracy idea.

      • Cal student

        I don’t quite understand the degree of equality you want Berkeley to be. Now that I think about it, I find Berkeley pretty diverse if we place Asians as minorities, which they are. The truth is, I don’t believe admissions have a preference for Asians, but I guess based on the UC Application, a lot of the Asians scored really well and many Asians apply to UCs like Berkeley. I really believe the admissions take considerations for URMs because most of the URMs from my high school who I believed are qualified did actually get accepted into Berkeley. Please leave Berkeley admissions out of this. I’m sure they have tried to be as fair as possible even with limited funding. Or, if you still feel that the Berkeley admission/process is racist then what do you suggest we should do? For the other topics you’ve mentioned, I’m not going to discuss because it’s a bit irrelevant to my stance. They are entirely different topics.

      • guest2

        So isela, because you believe UCB isn’t as diverse as it could be, you assume there is institutional racism. Do you believe there is racism in the NBA & NFL with its over-representation of African Americans? Could it be that superior athletic ability determines who gets to play? Could it be academic ability is a large factor in who gets accepted into UCB?

      • Calipenguin

        Isela, please do question why Cal isn’t as diverse as you’d like it to be. Think back to your high school. The gangbangers, the potheads, and the wannabe MCs. Did they flock to the tough math and science courses? Did they join the Math Club or compete in the Olympics? If they are not that great academically and they don’t have outstanding talents then what makes them qualified to come to Cal other than the darker color of their skin? Did they even bother to apply to Cal? Don’t blame everything on “institutional racism” because if it exists then why do poor Asian immigrants outperform not only Blacks but whites as well?

      • MrPickles

        You are a retard. You are beyond stupid. “why uc berkeley isn’t as diverse as i guess it could be?” Well maybe because Asians work HARDER than any other race, on average??? If you deny this, you are an idiot. There’s a reason why there’s 50% Asians at UC Berkeley. Yes, even more than there are white people.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S44FHKC2JIS3HFQNFWBGFWTIEU mark

        You want to meet institutional racism, just try and apply for a job with an Asian-owned corporation. I know a management consultant who told me about the data management centers at the big banks: Citicorp was full of India(ns), Chase was Chinese. They can’t work together and both of them despise whites and cannot possibly work with women on an equal basis!

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Beineke/100000274878115 Steve Beineke

        You are in fact the institutional racist. Why would you feel that you should get in before whites or Asians…simply because you aren’t white or Asian?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S44FHKC2JIS3HFQNFWBGFWTIEU mark

      The Filipinos are an interesting case, when the U.C. started race-tagging in 1970 they were on the list of those deserving special attention. By the 80′s they were over-achieving so much (and majoring in “real” disciplines out side of ethnic smush) that they took them off the list.

  • Dr Berkeley

    Again, BAMN takes kids out of school to make their rallies seem large and significant, when time and time again in the past, if you just ask any kid what he/she is doing, they have no clue about the political issue but do know they got a day off from school. SHAME on Felarca and Cruz!

    • Calipenguin

      Yvette Felarca is a middle school teacher and has the power to take her students on “field trips” to advance her own political agenda.

      • Stan De San Diego

        The fact that the California taxpayers are supporting that bloviating dimwit in her ongoing efforts to propagandize and miseducate children is obscene.

      • Guest

        For fuck’s sake, are these really her middle school students???

        This is ridiculous. Aren’t there any ethics or rules against using one’s students to foment racial warfare?

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S44FHKC2JIS3HFQNFWBGFWTIEU mark

        Yes, they hired her in Oakland. Speaks volumes. But it’s a sure way to keep the “minorities” (Oakland schools are 8% white) on a short leash and ever-dependent on the State. Makes it real convenient to rustle up a mob on cue, too.

  • guest

    the great age of entitlement….let me go to berkeley instead of the one more qualified, let me go to school for free and have someone else pay for it…..

    • troll

      i cannot agree more with you. all these kids getting free rides because they’re “poor” but blasting that money on the newest gadgets/shopping. not a lie – i’ve seen it with all my roommates. fuck you assholes. learn how to work hard for what you get in return.

    • Another parent

      i cannot agree more with you. these kids getting free rides because they’re “poor & black and Latino” .

    • guest

      If affirmative action is ruining universities, then Harvard and Stanford must be in terrible shape.

      • I_h8_disqus

        Stanford and Harvard are dealing with issues related to affirmative action. However, Stanford and Harvard admissions policies are different from what BAMN requests. BAMN is looking for racial quotas, and they are not emphasizing the abilities of the students they want admitted. Stanford and Harvard are using affirmative action in a different way. They are not looking at quotas. They are developing admissions policies that allow them to cast a wider net that will capture the qualified students who may be missed through regular application requirements like the SAT or GPA, and through these revised admissions policies they expect to get more minorities who are qualified but who are not recognized through the normal admissions criteria of the past. However, their admissions policies are not just getting minorities. They are getting the best students no matter what their background. BAMN would reach its goal by admitting rich blacks and Latinos. Stanford and Harvard are just going after the best students.

        • guest

          So basically, holistic review?

          • I_h8_disqus

            That is what they really seem to say about their admissions. I read an article from the president of Stanford from a few years ago, and he really tried to avoid saying that they used affirmative action in any way that indicated they were selecting students based on their race. He was very careful to talk about socioeconomic differences instead of race differences. He was also very careful to say that he wasn’t bringing in any student who was less qualified than other applicants.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_S44FHKC2JIS3HFQNFWBGFWTIEU mark

        They can cherry-pick from the top tier of the world. The richest man in the world is a Mexican of Lebanese ancestry. His kids would fill two “minority” boxes. BTW you won’t ever read about it in the press, but both Harvard and Stanford have ceilings on Asian admissions. I guess Berkeley does too, they get only half the undergrad slots (I remember when it was 20% at Harvard and 30% at Stanford, it’s probably higher now). But neither place would permit a non-white majority. (due to “legacy” admits who pay the full tuition).

  • I_h8_disqus

    “I look around this (campus), and this does not resemble my community.” That isn’t Cal’s fault. It is the fault of Skyline high, the Oakland school system, and the parents of students. There is no reason for Cal to resemble an average high school. Cal will more resemble strong high schools like Lowell. Laney College resembles Skyline.

  • dude

    I wonder how much those kids were paid to show up.

    I know kids who graduated from Berkeley High who were told they “had” to attend political events like this, even though most had no idea what was going on.

  • dude

    Wow, when will this madness ever stop.

    Yvette Felarca is a plague.

  • Guest

    A large group of openly racist affirmative action supporters led by the racist Yvette Felarca of BAMN.

    This happens all the time.

    Why is this news?

    • isela

      please explain to me how yvette felarca is racist?

      • I_h8_disqus

        Maybe because she places some students above others based on their race.

      • Stan De San Diego

        Please explain how you got admitted to Cal in the first place if your reading comprehension skills are that piss-poor.

  • Guest

    “I look around this (campus), and this does not resemble my
    community,” said Steven Wong, a senior at Skyline High School in
    Oakland, at the rally. “This must change.”

    If affirmative action was implemented, Asians like Wong would have a much smaller chance of getting into Cal.

    • isela

      this is not true at all

      • Dr Berkeley

        Just because you say something, isela, doesn’t make it true. But just being in BAMN eliminates any credibility you have. Go steal DC papers again, as your free speech hypocrite group did before.

        • isela

          thanks for assuming so much about me…how would you know if i am even a part of bamn? O.o and you’re right…but you should really stop assuming that i am wrong…just because it’s not what you believe…

          • Stan De San Diego

            > how would you know if i am even a part of bamn?

            You’re clearly annoying and ignorant enough to meet their membership criteria, so you certainly can understand why someone would make that assumption, right?

    • Guest

      “Wong was also at the BAMN-organized occupation of the campus registrar’s
      office in April during which protesters called for the campus to double
      minority-student enrollment.”

      Wong breaks the stereotype of Asian prowess at basic Math. The freshman
      class that entered Berkeley this fall was 72% minorities. It is
      mathematically impossible to reach 144% minorities even if no whites
      were admitted at all!

  • truthdoe

    seriously? why don’t you just do well in school like the rest of us and get accepted into the university that you deserve? why should you get into this school just because you’re black or latino? get over yourselves, idiots.

    • isela

      yea, fuck you! we do well in school, even despite all the discrimination we face in our daily lives. you’re an idiot to think that we live in a society where race no longer is an issue.

      • truthdoe

        I’m honestly just confused. would you please explain to me why you are entitled to affirmative action or the like? why do you get special privileges if you’re a certain race when they aren’t even looking at that when going through the admissions process?

      • I_h8_disqus

        Tell it to all the Asian students who have succeeded without affirmative action.

      • Stan De San Diego

        If you really did that well in school, you wouldn’t need affirmative action in the first place. Regarding the “discrimination” in your daily life, I’m willing to bet it has far less to do with your skin color than it does with your lack of intelligence and sense of entitlement.

        • isela

          i’m sorry. but you can’t possibly know what i have been through…and sure! this doesn’t apply to everyone either but just because i don’t agree with you it doesn’t mean that i lack any intelligence…and not all schools have an equal amount of resources and not everyone starts off at the same level. there are still inequalities that exist. race, plays a part in that. of course it gets more complicated than that. it isn’t the only thing that affects individuals. but how will we ever get to hear different voices if the opportunities aren’t there?

          • troll

            just to put it out there, I’m Asian and the school I went to was 70% latino, 30% asians. We didn’t have the same resources as other schools as well but what little we did have, I took advantage of and didn’t make myself out to be a pity case like you are. EVERYBODY has a past – why do you think yours was especially worse than someone else? just because my school didn’t have the same resources, I looked elsewhere to get those resources. for example, not enough AP classes? go to a community college like I did, apply for financial aid if you’re poor (in fact, units are free if you are still in high school) and just STOP COMPLAINING. it has nothing to do with your fucking race. all these other lazy ass students do not “deserve” to come here. nobody is entitled. get that straight.

          • Stan De San Diego

            > “i’m sorry. but you can’t possibly know what i have been through.”

            Well, you clearly haven’t been through any K-12 school that taught you anything about proper spelling, grammar or punctuation.

            > not all schools have an equal amount of resources
            > and not everyone starts off at the same level.

            I went to a pretty crappy HS myself (John Muir HS in Pasadena) yet I didn’t let the incompetent Affirmative Action teachers there hold me back. What’s your excuse again?

          • MrPickles

            Affirmative Action shouldn’t be based on race. It should be based on if your community or high school was poor. Race should have no place in laws that discriminate against other races, such as reverse discriminating against Asians. It just isn’t fair to the people that actually work hard. Mexicans and blacks always need to find a fucking excuse for everything. Just try working hard for once. No wonder Berkeley is composed of more than 50% Asian students, even though Asians only make up 10% of the California population.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Beineke/100000274878115 Steve Beineke

            Whatever you have been through…you are you own worst enemy. Quit blaming whitey for all of your shortcomings and failures.

      • alum

        Your improper capitalization speaks to your scholastic abilities.

        • isela

          riiiiiiiiight -_-

          • Stan De San Diego

            You don’t believe what alum just told you? Has anyone with a genuine clue ever told you how you will be judged once you get out of college?

            Maybe you come from a background where nobody else you know ever made it through college, or maybe you just don’t care. However, your first impression for ANY job you apply for out of college will be based on your WRITING SKILLS, not only spelling/grammar/punctuation but on your ability to communicate clearly and effectively in the English language. If you EVER send out a resume or cover letter that looks ANYTHING like the majority of your posts here, two things will happen. If you’re lucky and the HR people feel charitable or sorry for you, they will merely roundfile your resume and never call you. However, if they don’t feel in a particularly good mood on a given day or feel like a little humor at your expense, they will probably circulate your cover letter and resume through the middle and upper levels of the organization, so they can have a good laugh at your expense and pontificate about how the quality of education is going down the toilet these days.

            If you ARE genuinely a Cal student (and I sincerely hope that you are not), I would be personally embarrassed as hell that someone as CLUELESS and IGNORANT as you would be representing MY alma mater - and I’m sure that others here will agree with me on this point, even if they vehemently disagree with everything else I have ever posted to the Daily Cal website. Got it?

          • endbias

            dude, just chill out. nobody bothers with impeccable grammar on the internet.

            “However, if they don’t feel in a particularly good mood on a given day or feel like a little humor at your expense, they will probably circulate your cover letter and resume through the middle and upper levels of the organization…”

            ^ just read that and see how perfect your own writing is. capital letters are overrated. as a writer, i must say that if you want to pick on the least important aspect of grammar on the internet when your own sentences resemble that of a homeless vagrant, you are a veritable tool.

          • Guest

            “capital letters are overrated”: They are used for emphasis, you idiot. This is in no way, shape, or form a grammar issue. Pull your head out of your ass before you post comments on the Daily Cal. Thanks.

          • Stan De San Diego

            Knowing how and when to capitalize is not “overrated”, and your inability/refusal to do so does not make you special. You’re not e.e. cummings, and if that’s the way you choose to present yourself to the world, don’t count on others taking you seriously.

      • Dr Berkeley

        “even despite”? So much for learning correct grammar and word usage. Yeah, Isela, you soooo belong at Berkeley. It’s CSU East Bay with you — go join the other remedial students.

        • isela

          so i make mistakes. so does everyone! but suddenly because i don’t agree with you i don’t belong at berkeley? i obviously worked just as hard as you to get here…right?

          • Stan De San Diego

            > so i make mistakes. so does everyone!

            There’s a difference between the occasional typo and/or grammatical error, and the complete inability to type a properly spelled, grammatically correct sentence, something most of us could do by the time we were out of elementary school. You don’t just “make mistakes”. Your writing is indicative of someone who is barely literate.

            > but suddenly because i don’t agree with you i don’t belong at berkeley?

            No, the reason you don’t belong at Berkeley is because you can’t even perform at the level required of a college graduate, much less have demonstrated that you are in any way Berkeley calibre. You clearly didn’t get to Cal on your own merits, but on your race and ethnicity. In other words, you’re a poster child for Affirmative Action: unqualified and clueless. It would be funny except for the fact that your admission to Cal Berkeley deprived someone else who was genuinely qualified.

            > i obviously worked just as hard as you to get here.

            If you really did, you still didn’t learn anything, so you’re obviously not very bright, and don’t belong at Cal. Why don’t you take some basic adult literacy classes? You’re not even qualified for community college at this point in your life.

          • endbias

            as much as i hate affirmative action, you really need to calm down. i don’t think you know what a colon is used for, and you need to learn how to use em dashes. your grammar really pisses me off. i can’t stand hypocritical and incompetent grammar nazis.

          • Guest

            You are incorrect. Whether to use a colon or an em dash in this instance is at the writer’s discretion. Try not to reveal your ignorance and dishonesty when you attempt to impose your own stylistic preferences on others.

          • Stan De San Diego

            > i don’t think you know what a colon is used for,

            I know what caps are used for.

      • troll

        race is no longer an issue in uc berkeley admissions. get over it. you are still the idiot. get over that, too.

      • MisterPickles

        obviously you don’t do well enough in school. That’s why all you blacks and latinos are complaining. You think Asians don’t face discrimination? Yet Asians all work hard and make up the largest racial composition of UC Berkeley. Affirmative action is DISCRIMINATION against Asians and whites. And why do you think that should be legal?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Steve-Beineke/100000274878115 Steve Beineke

        Bull. You set yourself up to not be competitive and then whine when you aren’t. FU.

  • 1776

    So this was the crap that was interrupting my lecture.

    • libsrclowns

      So these racists want to discriminate against whites. Fuck them.