Category Archives: Affirmative Action

Obama On Affirmative Action – 1999 to Present

How has Obama answered the question on Affirmative Action over the years, you might be surprised. I certainly was.

Associated Press interview, July 2009.

“I’ve always believed that Affirmative Action was less of an issue or should have been less of an issue than it’s been made out to be in news reports.”

Conference on Unity, July 2008.

“I am a strong supporter of Affirmative Action when property structured. So that it is not just a quota, but it is acknowledging and taking into account some of the hardships and difficulties that communities of color may have experienced, continue to experience and it also speaks to the value of diversity in all walks of American life. We are becoming a more diverse culture and it’s something that has to be acknowledged. I’ve also said that Affirmative Action is not going to be the long term solution to the problems of race in America because frankly if you’ve got 50% of African American or Latino kids dropping out of high school, it doesn’t really matter what you do in terms of Affirmative Action, those kids are not getting into college. And you know, there have been times where I think Affirmative Action’s been viewed as a short-cut to solving some of these broader, long term structural problems. I also think that we have to think about Affirmative Action and craft it in such a way where some of our children who are advantaged aren’t getting more favorable treatment than a poor white kid who’s struggled more. That has to be taken into account.”

Carleton College Skinner Memorial Chapel February 5, 1999, the Convocation Speaker for Black History Month – Barack Obama.

“If you walk into the average corporation whether it’s in Minneapolis or in Chicago – now Chicago, the metropolitan area is about 30-40% black and if you go into any major office building you will not see more than 5% black people in there and most them are secretaries and delivery people. So, one thing to understand is that Affirmative Action works fairly narrowly – relatively small margin of the population. Once you take that as a fact then potentially there’s some areas of compromise.”

“EEOC does a miserable job because it’s been starved for funding by Congress so that it is almost impossible for you to win a lawsuit.”

“I have had individuals who have been called n**** by the CEO of a Fortune 500 company in front of the entire office and had their cases thrown out. Because the standards are so high and there’s so little government enforcement of anti-discrimination principles.”

Note: I have put the above items in quotes, however have not included the deragotory term actually utilized by Obama.

“There are some legitimate greivances from the majority community in any sort of Affirmative Action Program – by definition, alright, I would emphasize that it tends to be a marginal harm – but maybe marginally harmed by the operation of Affirmative Action.”

Note: I am linking the audio in it’s entirety –  without edit.

It appears that Obama has adjusted his attitudes/opinions over the years as he has become more political and depending on the audience.

The most jarring comment made by Obama in 1999 wherein he speaks of cases being thrown out; The statement gives the impression that Obama is speaking of persons that he represented, however according to the Chicago Sun-Times

“He wrote lots of substantial memos, but he didn’t try any cases,” said Judson Miner, a partner in the firm who was Obama’s boss.

A search of all the cases in Cook County Circuit Court in which Obama made an appearance since he graduated from Harvard in 1991 shows: Zero.

His practice was confined mainly to federal court in Chicago, where he made formal appearances in only five district court cases and another five in cases before the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals — a total of 10 cases in his legal career. He was on the winning side of just about all those cases. Miner said there were 30 cases to which Obama contributed in some way.

As with most incendiary comments such as this that have been made by Obama, no specifics are provided.

I must admit, I never thought I would see the day that an American President would have used the ‘N’ word in any context.

Once again after putting pieces of Obama together I am left wondering – how does he really feel about this issue? Does he believe that America should be a fair Country? Does he recognize the “content of their character”?

I’m afraid based on Obama’s own words over the years, I am left believing that Obama does not feel that minorities have the ability to succeed on their own merits on a level playing field. How sad that we’ve elected a man so elitest that he feels he is above his own race and that they could not possibly achieve what he has achieved, without government intervention/assistance.


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