Headline Dec 30, 2014/


WHAT JUSTICE   -  did the Pakistani protesters find after months of protests? This is the question, that Pakistan's greatest son, O'' Captain Imran Khan asked.

True on that Captain, true on that!    

But allow me to enlighten you and the world, that this issue doesn't complete with that.  So herewith, the burden of history.

Above the entrance to America's Supreme Court  four words are carved:  ''Equal Justice Under Law''.

Only just so recently, the court was pondering whether affirmative action breaks that promise. The justices recently accepted a case concerning a vote in Michigan that banned it, and was soon to rule:

Whether the University of Texas's race conscious admissions policies were lawful. The question in both cases was as simple as it was divisive: should governments be colour-blind?

America is one of many countries where the state gives a leg-up to members of certain racial, ethnic, or other groups by holding them to different standards.

The details vary. In some countries, the policy applies only to areas under direct state control,  such as  public-works contracts or admission to public universities.

In others, private firms are also obliged to take account of the race of their employees, contractors and even owners. But the effects are strikingly similar around the world.

Many of these policies were put in place with the best of intentions:

To atone the past injustices are ameliorate their legacy.

No one can deny that, for example,  blacks in America or  dalits  in India  (members of the cast once branded  ''untouchable'' )   have suffered grievous wrongs, and continue to suffer discrimination.

Favouring members of these groups seems like a quick and effective way of making society fairer.

Most of these groups have made great progress. But establishing how much credit affirmative action can take is hard, when growth also brings progress and some of the good   -for example:

The confidence-boosting effect of creating prominent role models for a benighted group   -is intangible. And it is impossible to know how a targeted group would have got on without this special treatment.   

Malays are three times richer in Singapore,  where they do not get preferences, than in next-door  Malaysia, where they do.

Awarding university places to black students with lower test scores than whites sounds reasonable,  given the legacy of segregation. But a study found that at some American universities:

Black applicants who scored  450 points    -out of 1600-  worse than Asians on entrance tests were equally likely to win a place. That is neither fair to Asians, nor an incentive to blacks to study in high schools.

In their book  ''Mismatch'' , Richard Sander and Stuart Taylor produces evidence that suggests affirmative action reduces the number of blacks who qualify as lawyers-

By placing black students in law schools for which they are ill-prepared, causing many to drop out.  Had they attended less demanding schools, they might have graduated.

Although the groups covered by affirmative action tend to be poorer than their neighbours, the individuals who benefit are often not.

One American federal-contracting programme favours businesses owned by   ''socially and economically disadvantaged''  people.

Such people can be  87 times richer than the average American family and still be deemed  ''disadvantaged''  if their skin is the right colour.

But when jobs are dished out for reason other than merit and competence, the state grows less competent, as everyone and anyone who has wrestled with Pakistani, Indian or Nigerian officialdom can attest.

Moreover, rules favouring businesses owned by members of particular groups are easy to game.

Malaysians talk of   ''Ali-Baba''   firms,  where  Ali  -an ethnic Malay-   lends his name.  for a fee,  to  Baba  a Chinese businessman, to win a contract.

The University of Texas justifies discriminating in favour of black people not on the ground that society owes it to them,  but because, it claims- 

A diverse university.  Offers a better education to all its students. That is a reasonable argument.

So, the Pakistani protesters and O'' Captain Imtan Khan, may just find some solace and a cheer,  that even if justice is hard to comeby here, the burden of history is theirs for the keep. 

The Honour and Serving of this  ''operational research''  continues. We hope to continue writing on this most important and critical concern, as regularly as possible.

With respectful dedication to all the democratic protesters in the world. 

With respectful dedication to the Students of the world, studying law. See Ya all on !WOW!   -the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless:

''' Social Policies '''

'''Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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