The Supreme Court voted 4-3 to uphold the University of Texas' affimative action program on June 23.
"The race-conscious admissions program in use at the time of petitioner’s application is lawful under the Equal Protection Clause," said the court.
Petitioner Abigail Fisher argued she was the subject of discrimation by University of Texas admissions because of her race. Fisher, who is white, said that she was rejected while students of color with her same credentials were accepted.
Justice Kennedy wrote the majority opinion for the court, and defended the fundamental value of diversity.
The New York Times reports:
“A university is in large part defined by those intangible ‘qualities which are incapable of objective measurement but which make for greatness,’” Justice Kennedy wrote, quoting from a landmark desegregation case. “Considerable deference is owed to a university in defining those intangible characteristics, like student body diversity, that are central to its identity and educational mission.”
In a lengthy and impassioned dissent from the bench, Justice Alito denounced the court’s affirmative action ruling, saying the university had not demonstrated the need for race-based admissions and saying the program benefitted advantaged students over impoverished ones.
“This is affirmative action gone berserk,” Justice Alito told his colleagues, adding that what they had done in the case was misguided and “is simply wrong.”
Read more at The New York Times.