Unit 2 Homework
Affirmative action (U.S. English), also called positive discrimination or reverse discrimination (British English) or employment equity, is specific consideration given to groups considered by some to be victims of social discrimination. This may consist of preferential access to education, employment, health care, or social welfare.
In employment, affirmative action requires that institutions search for minority candidates. Critics often object to the use of racial quotas and gender quotas in affirmative action. In fact, quotas are illegal in the United States, except when a judge issues an order for a specific institution to make up for extreme past discrimination. However some feel quotas exist in more subtle ways.
A particular minority group or gender may be underrepresented in an area, often employment or academic-related, perhaps due to past discrimination against members of the group. In such circumstances, there is a school of thought, which maintains that unless this group is given specific help to achieve a more substantial representation, it will never gain the critical mass and acceptance in that role, even if discrimination against the group is eradicated. For this reason, it is suggested that more effort must be made to recruit persons from that background, train them, and if necessary, lower the entrance requirements for them.
Proponents of affirmative action argue that affirmative action is the best way to correct a history of discrimination against a minority group. With a wide- and long-term perspective, affirmative action may be seen as redressing an otherwise unfair balance of historical wrongs and institutionalised disadvantages.
Opponents view affirmative action as reverse discrimination against otherwise qualified people in the majority. Some believe that as we progress toward a more open society, affirmative action is unnecessary and that racial or gender...