Editor, Daily Nexus:
We, the students of the University of California, have been fighting for the repeal of SP-1 and SP-2, which eliminated Affirmative Action, since their inception in 1995. Students have been mobilizing and organizing for the repeal of SP-1 and SP-2 because we feel that this action has created an unwelcoming environment for underrepresented students. The UC Student Association (UCSA) advocates on behalf of all UC students and has consistently expressed student opposition to these discriminatory policies.
Yes, it is true that Proposition 209 is in place in the state of California, but that does not mean that the board of regents can not take a stand against anti-Affirmative Action policies. To repeal SP-1 and SP-2 would be a symbolic and powerful action that would declare the UC system an open environment to all students of all backgrounds and hold the University true to its educational mission. With Resolution 28 (RE-28), the efforts of UCSA and students statewide will be lost because this resolution sidetracks the real issue at hand.
Resolution 28 is offensive to students because it states that it will replace both SP-1 and SP-2 while reaffirming every element of these policies. Again, we see that the regents have fallen short of listening to the students “requests that they eliminate SP-1.” In the language of RE-28 it states that students were “proud” to have been admitted to the university without Affirmative Action. Yet this is solely because students who were qualified to be admitted were not, while others who were highly qualified did not even dare to apply because of the uninviting nature of the University admissions process. Once again, the regents are twisting the student opinion with a diluted attempt to make us believe that they are taking a positive stand on Affirmative Action, but they are not rectifying their previous actions. Furthermore, RE-28 claims that the university has treated all students equally in the admissions process, when in reality, underrepresented admissions have dropped drastically systemwide.
Therefore we strongly urge the board of regents to vote no on RE-28 and vote yes on repealing SP-1 and SP-2. If the regents pass RE-28, they will reaffirm the perception that the University is an un-welcoming institution for underrepresented students. The time has come for the UC Regents to vote on repealing SP-1 and SP-2.
UCSA BOARD OF DIRECTORS