Martin Center column probes affirmative action for women in higher education

Kursat Pekgoz writes for the Martin Center about the impact of affirmative action for women in American colleges and universities.

There is one paradox central to American identity politics that not only runs afoul of Supreme Court doctrine but also basic Aristotelian logic. What, exactly, is the purpose of having affirmative action for women in today’s academia?

I understand that the popular meaning of the phrase may create some confusion. Most people ordinarily associate “affirmative action” with racial preferences in college admissions. But affirmative action is by no means limited to the use of racial preferences, nor does it only cover college admissions. Affirmative action for women, who now constitute an ever-increasing majority on college campuses, is rampant in today’s academia.

The bias against men in the American education system is as pervasive as it is well-documented.

Consider that 77 percent of all teachers in the public education system are women, that girls have higher grades than boys in all categories, and that numerous studies “have shown that stereotyping [by female teachers] can bias teachers’ assessment and grades” against boys.

Women are the majority of law students and medical students. Women earn the majority of doctorate degrees in the health and medical (80 percent), biological (56 percent), and social/behavioral (63 percent) sciences. Concerns over the underrepresentation of women in STEM education are outdated. Indeed, women are at a two-to-one advantage over men in STEM faculty hiring.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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