March 6, 2023

Racist Columbia Drops ACT and SAT

The Ivy League school thus becomes the first of that group to permanently abandon the nation’s long-held standardized tests as admissions criteria.

Columbia University is many things, but intellectually honest isn’t one of them.

The Manhattan-based Ivy League school, which counts among its graduates Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Milton Friedman, Teddy Roosevelt, Neil Gorsuch, Amelia Earhart, Warren Buffet, Richard Feynman, Franklin Roosevelt, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Bill de Blasio, Barack Obama, and Barack Obama’s wingman, quietly announced last week that it will no longer require undergrad applicants to submit their ACT or SAT scores as admissions criteria, thus becoming the first Ivy to permanently make the submission of these standardized test scores optional.

Columbia thus joins a growing number of higher-ed institutions that no longer require the test scores when considering applicants. But what’s really deceitful is the school’s stated rationale for doing so.

Here’s how the school’s undergrad admissions department puts it: “The holistic and contextual application review process … is rooted in the belief that students are dynamic, multi-faceted individuals who cannot be defined by any single factor. Our review is purposeful and nuanced — respecting varied backgrounds, voices and experiences — in order to best determine an applicant’s suitability for admission and ability to thrive in our curriculum and our community, and to advance access to our educational opportunities.”

What school administrators refuse to admit is that they want to admit more blacks and Hispanics at the expense of whites and Asians. And why wouldn’t they admit such a thing? Because they know it’s racist. And we don’t mean “fake” racist, like the trope that the Left routinely trots out to smear the ACT and SAT; we mean really racist.

When a school says that its “holistic and contextual application review process” is “purposeful and nuanced” and respecting of “varied backgrounds, voices and experiences,” it’s merely tossing out a euphemistic word-soup to say that it reserves the right to discriminate based on race. Which is, ipso facto, racist.

The Left, as author and thinker Dennis Prager is fond of saying, wrecks everything it touches. Including higher ed.

We might call this a case of the Left eating its own. When the University of California system jettisoned the ACT and SAT two years ago, the left-leaning College Board, which produces the SAT, pushed back: “Real inequities exist in American education, and they are reflected in every measure of academic achievement, including the SAT. The SAT itself is not a racist instrument. Every question is rigorously reviewed for evidence of bias and any question that could favor one group over another is discarded.”

Back in September, we noted that the Supreme Court had committed to reviewing a couple of cases that hinged on this sort of racial discrimination. As we wrote at the time: “The facts of the case seem pretty straightforward: When it comes to admissions, Harvard College discriminates against Asians and whites, and in favor of blacks and Hispanics. The question is, will the Supreme Court allow the school, and others like it, to keep getting away with it? For the sake of the colorblind society that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. dreamed of, we hope not.”

But it’s not just Dr. King’s fundamentally American vision that’s at stake here; it’s also the academic well-being of black college students. As scholar and researcher Heather Mac Donald notes in her 2018 book The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our Culture, when black students are forced into academic institutions for which they’re not properly prepared, they suffer and fail.

“Until it becomes possible to discuss the effects of preferences without being accused of racial animus,” she writes, “it may be impossible to dislodge academic affirmative action, no matter how discredited its purported justifications.”

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