The issue here isn’t racial discrimination, it’s a symptom of the fact that the incentive structure of American higher education is totally screwy. Schools want to produce two things. One is rich alumni who give them money, and the other is high ratings from US News and World Report. Both goals can be pursued either by investing resources in recruiting better inputs or else by investing resources in doing a better job of teaching. It turns out to be more cost-effective to invest in recruiting better inputs. And since high school seniors from high socioeconomic status families tend to already be better-prepared for college than kids from low-socioeconomic status families, that means that financial aid resources naturally flow to the high-socioeconomic status students.
It’s not just race and it’s not just scholarships. Across the board, the way higher education works in America is to deliver the most resources to the people who need the least help.
First, it is simply false that scholarships for people of color crowd out monies for white students. According to a national study by the General Accounting Office, less than four percent of scholarship money in the U.S. is represented by awards that consider race as a factor at all, while only 0.25 percent (one quarter of one percent) of all undergrad scholarship dollars come from awards that are restricted to persons of color alone (1). In other words, whites are fully capable of competing for and receiving any of the other monies — roughly 99.75 percent of all scholarship funds out there for college. Although this GAO study was conducted in the mid-’90s, there is little reason to expect that the numbers have changed since then. If anything, increasing backlash to affirmative action and fear of lawsuits brought by conservatives against such efforts would likely have further limited such awards as a percentage of national scholarships.
In truth, only 3.5 percent of college students of color receive any scholarship even partly based on race, suggesting that such programs remain a pathetically small piece of the financial aid picture (2). So when Mr. Bohannon walks around campus and sees students of color, he may believe them all to be wards of some race-based preference scheme; yet the evidence suggests that at least 96.5 percent of them received no race-based scholarship at all.
There is an incredibly diverse array of scholarships available for all kinds of things, that have nothing to do with academic merit alone, but are tied to various aspects of a student’s identity: scholarships for people who are left-handed, or kids whose parents sell Tupperware, or the children of horse-breeders, or descendants of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, among many thousands of such awards (3).
To begin, the claim that whites are being disadvantaged by minority scholarships, even in theory, ignores the many ways in which the nation’s educational system provides unfair advantages to whites from beginning to end. It ignores the fact that the average white student in the U.S. attends school with half as many poor kids as the average black or Latino student, which in turn has a direct effect on performance, since attending a low-poverty school generally means having more resources available for direct instruction (4). Indeed, schools with high concentrations of students of color are 11-15 times more likely than mostly white schools to have high concentrations of student poverty (5). To point to minority scholarships as a source of unfairness that somehow tilts the opportunity structure too far in favor of non-white folks, is to ignore that white students are twice as likely as their African American or Latino counterparts to be taught by the most highly qualified teachers (in terms of prior preparation and specific subject certification), and half as likely to have the least qualified instructors in class (6). This too directly benefits whites, as research suggests being taught by highly qualified teachers is one of the most important factors in school achievement (7). To scream about the unfairness of minority scholarships is to ignore that long before the point of college admissions, whites are twice as likely to be placed in honors or advanced placement classes, relative to black students, and that even when academic performance would justify lower placement for whites and higher placement for blacks, it is the African American students who are disproportionately tracked low, and whites who are tracked higher (8). Indeed, schools serving mostly white students have three times as many honors or AP classes offered, per capita, as those serving mostly students of color (9).
^i went to bold the important parts of this specific quotation but ended up with a solid black paragraph so just read it all
So although it is true that whites are excluded from 0.25 percent of the scholarship monies available for college, this cannot rationally be considered a disadvantaging factor in our lives, given the larger, ingrained and systematic advantages from which we benefit, and from which most people of color are excluded. The 0.25 percent of scholarships for students of color is literally a drop in the bucket compared to the latter.
Despite the claim that race-based scholarships for people of color amount to a double-standard (since scholarships for folks of color are considered legitimate, but white scholarships aren’t), in truth, the standard is simple, straightforward and singular: persons belonging to groups that have been systematically marginalized should have opportunities targeted to them so as to allow for the development of their full potential, which otherwise might be restricted.
In effect, these are not scholarships based on race, but rather, scholarships based on a recognition of racism and how racism has shaped the opportunity structure in the U.S.
^this part is very important too. the only thing worse than doing something to specifically help marginalized minorities in america is to admit that racism is actually a real thing
there's more here: http://www.timwise.o...ian-victimhood/
it's a great article on the topic