I am disappointed and concerned by the opinion presented in “When Should Race Matter in Decisions?” [by Ken Nesmith, Feb. 11]. Nesmith challenges affirmative action while at the same time defending racial profiling for the purpose of law enforcement. It amazes me that the author is willing to defend racial profiling on the basis that law enforcement can and should use all possible identifiers in their judgement, yet at the same time is not willing to justify hiring or admissions policies that consider ethnicity -- even though ethnicity is as much an indicator of academic opportunity as it is of criminal intent. Equally bothersome is the opinion presented in the article that we should not seek “perfect equality of results between all races.” A dedicated effort toward “equality of opportunity,” which the author purports to support, would in fact achieve “equality of results.” The author’s distinction between the two makes me think that his real intention is to defend a society which benefits the majority at the expense of minority groups, with no real effort made to seek any sort of societal equality.
Why does Nesmith not support policies that at least attempt, albeit in a flawed and limited way, to reduce the real inequities among ethnic groups? Is it because he wishes to maintain the “indicators” that legitimize the profiling of innocent minorities?
Sandip Roy G