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Woman’s Viral Tweet Blows College ‘Racism’ Myth Out of the Water

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Woman’s Viral Tweet Blows College ‘Racism’ Myth Out of the Water

Twitter / @ISmashFizzle

The New York Times broke the news on Tuesday that the Trump administration was getting ready to use U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) resources to look into and possibly sue universities over affirmative action policies.

But the investigation is not in favor of minorities; on the contrary, the DOJ will be hunting down schools that may have discriminated against white applicants.

The report prompted Ashley C. Ford, a features writer at Refinery 29, to shed some light on the long-held notion that affirmative action is just a fancy way of saying “unqualified Black college students get to go to any school for free.”

The Times acquired an internal document that asks lawyers to work on “investigations and possible litigation related to intentional race-based discrimination in college and university admissions.” One aspect of this effort that is particularly troubling is that it will be taken on from the DOJ’s main office, whose staff consists of Trump appointees, rather than the apolitical Educational Opportunities Section.

While the DOJ wouldn’t confirm the Times’ report, proponents of the initiative a review of race-based admissions policies was long overdue, stating that they hurt other minorities, particularly Asian-Americans. On the other hand, detractors called a potential review of college admissions standards to benefits whites unnecessary, chilling to diversity, and “the natural culmination of white conservative America’s growing sense of aggrievement and Fox News–fueled belief that they are somehow the victims of reverse racism,” as Elliot Hannon wrote for Slate.

According to the series of tweets Ford sent out, she had a job between her senior year of high school and freshman year of college, and talked to a number of people who assumed that she’d attend college for free, simply because she is Black.

Ford further talked about how the comments weren’t mean or accusatory, but simply told to her by white peers as facts.

The things is, according to Ford, these people really believed that affirmative action somehow meant “free college” based on things they heard from others who also believed it.

Besides the fact that this is patently false, statistics show that going to college at no cost is extremely rare, regardless of a person’s race.

A CBS Money report from 20111 states that only 20,000 students across the country received full-ride scholarships that covered their entire tuition. When it comes to dealing with private colleges, where tuition is usually much more expensive, that number dwindles to just 250. Even full-ride athletic scholarships are similarly rare, since only six sports offer them and others only granting recipients small amounts of money.

The overwhelming majority of scholarship amounts are small. The National Center for Educational Statistics reported that for the 2010-2011 school year, the average amount of grant and scholarship money for a student enrolled at a public four-year college was $6,270. In-state residents don’t get much of a break either–they will be paying almost $10,000 per year, so whatever scholarship they get won’t pay for everything. And aid numbers go down drastically for higher income levels, while tuition skyrockets for out-of-state residents or private colleges.

With student debt inflating to $30,000 on average for a graduating college senior, it’s obvious that virtually nobody is going to college “for free.” If the Justice Department’s growing focus on white grievance results in less scholarship money being offered to minority students that problem will get even worse. In fact, the amount of misinformation she was dealing with, along with the fear that college is about to get even more expensive for black students led Ford to send out one more tweet:

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