College Republicans at UC Berkeley are opposing a bill that would allow the University to consider race and gender in the admissions process. To show their opposition, they have created a bake sale that offers baked goods at discounted prices according to the race and gender of the buyer. While the price for White men is $2, Asians only have to pay $1.50, Latinos $1, African Americans $.75 and Native Americans $.25. Women receive $.25 off their respective racial group’s price. While this effort is meant to be satirical, and demonstrate the injustice in the pending university policy, I find it accomplishes the exact opposite.
The point of this is apparently to highlight that affirmative action-like policies discriminate based on race and gender. They’re right. Affirmative action policies and these bake sale prices reflect the on-going discrimination that makes such policies necessary.
Ironically, the bake sale prices are indicative of the pay gap. Racial minorities across the board make a fraction of what white men make. Women, in their respective racial groups consistently make less than their male counterparts. So frankly, as a white woman, I should really only pay $1.60 for my brownie, compared to the $2 white men have to pay. The $.25 discount offered doesn’t quite cover the actual wage disparities I face.
For once I think the Republicans are onto something. Maybe their idea should be applied across the board to reflect wage disparities. Maybe then white men would actually be on equal footing with the rest of us. The idea of losing white male privilege must be a scary concept. Seems to me that’s what all this fuss about affirmative action policies are all about in the first place.