The Trump Administration’s recent decision to reverse the Obama affirmative action guidelines relating to college and university admissions policies is welcome news. While the U.S. Supreme Court prohibited outright quotas, it did allow the limited use of race as one factor that school can consider if they choose to do so.

However, the Obama administration worked to get the schools to maximize the use of race such that racial preferences pervaded the selection process. The Trump turnaround now means that the schools can run into trouble if they don’t minimize the use of race.


The Obama administration had come up with a virtual roadmap that guided schools how to push the envelope but also survive judicial scrutiny. In some ways, the guidelines arguably went beyond what the Supreme Court allowed. And of course, there were subtle hints that there would be financial benefits for those schools that maximized the use of race and downsides to those that held back.

The Trump administration turnaround now means that schools run the risk of Department of Justice scrutiny and action if they don’t minimize the use of race – and there are also suggestions of possible loss of federal funding.

When all is said and done, no matter how you package it, giving something to someone or denying something to someone because of race is a racial preference. And that has no place in a democracy – politically-correct gobbledygook notwithstanding. Nor should we ever forget, no matter the guilt-feelings on the left, that we Jews suffer mightily whenever race is substituted for merit.