One of the counts in which Harvard University was charged in the Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard University case was whether or not the school intentionally discriminated against Asian American applicants. While we have long been outspoken that Harvard, along with all highly selective colleges across America, discriminates against Asian American applicants, we have also long asserted that these schools don’t discriminate intentionally. Rather, they discriminate against Asian American applicants unintentionally. And how? Admissions officers, like all human beings, stereotype. They pit one Asian American applicant who plays the piano and competes in mathletes against another Asian American applicant who plays the cello and conducts science research. Oh, but USAFPX, what you’ve said makes us cringe! That may be. But it doesn’t mean it isn’t true. In fact, it’s at the heart of the underlying claim in the SFFA v. Harvard case — even if it’s not so provable. As Avenue Q taught us, we are all a little bit racist. Even you. As Judge Burroughs wrote in her decision’s conclusion, “The process would likely benefit from conducting implicit bias trainings for
admissions officers.” Doesn’t that say it all?