It's time for UT to have a student body that looks more like Texas by finding and recruiting more well-qualified minority students.
It's time for the Texas K-12 schools to produce more well-qualified minority students, so that Affirmative Action is not used as a band-aid to cover up the failures at the K-12 level.
Mark, for once I agree with most of what you say. I think that Affirmative Action is an imperfect solution to a problem with no good answers. Unfortunately, until people of all races and classes have equal access and opportunities in K-12 education I think that it's necessary for institutions of education to go out of their way to find and recruit such qualified minorities.
'Recruiting' and 'giving preference to' should NEVER be conflated, as you are doing. There's a gulf of difference between a school trying to get more minorities to apply and giving those minorities preferences over their white counterparts. The former involves discriminating in recruiting, the latter involves discriminating in actual admissions.
And as affirmative action involves preferences, it also ultimately involves quotas. The Supreme Court dodged this issue by pathetically claiming that a 'critical mass' was not a quota -- which is an insult to the intelligence of any honest person tracking the case. If a school is trying to create a racially diverse enviroment through racial preferences for minorities, they have numbers in mind. Even the University of Michigan admitted this.
So Byron, I think you're doing two things: 1) confusing recruiting with admissions, and 2) drawing a distinction between quotas and preferences when none exists in practice.
Unfortunately, until people of all races and classes have equal access and opportunities in K-12 education
Without competition, the public school system will never be accountable for their failures. More money is not the solution - if anything there is now a reverse correlation between funding level and academic performance, beyond basic infrastructure, at least. And "basic infrastructure" doesn't mean a laptop for each student and a break room for every five teachers.
There's nothing to gain and nothing to lose.