Vikram David Amar, law professor and dean at Illinois Law, and Michael Schaps, a California civil litigation attorney, discuss Justice Scalia’s provocative comments during last week’s oral argument in Fisher v. University of Texas. Amar and Schaps point out that viewed in the most charitable light, Justice Scalia’s comments are actually an attempt to articulate an academic theory—known as mismatch theory—not simply bare racism. Though the authors are not persuaded of mismatch theory, they critique Scalia’s assumption that truth of the theory would compel the abolition of affirmative action altogether.
In light of the oral argument before the U.S. Supreme Court in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, Cornell University law professor Michael Dorf considers whether the school’s Ten Percent Plan is “race neutral.” Dorf distinguishes race consciousness from racial classifications, and he points out that Justice Kennedy—the Court’s usual swing vote on such issues—has historically found that distinction to be significant.
Cornell University law professor Sherry F. Colb comments on a finding by the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights that an Illinois school district had violated anti-discrimination laws by barring a transgender girl from showering and changing in the girls’ locker room without restrictions. Colb argues that perhaps the best solution for everyone may be to have individual showers for everyone, rather than singling out a single person or disregarding the privacy concerns of everyone.
Cornell University law professor Michael Dorf considers whether Princeton should remove Woodrow Wilson’s name and likeness from the campus due to Wilson’s racist views and actions. Dorf points out that the question is complex for a number of reasons, and rather than offering an outright answer, he provides a framework for evaluating this and similar issues.
Cornell University law professor Michael Dorf comments on recent protests against administrators on various campuses across the United States. Dorf argues that the protests reflect the failure of campus administrators, faculty, and students to follow through on promoting diversity beyond the admissions process.
Law professor and dean designate of the University of Illinois College of Law Vikram David Amar reflects on his tenure as a professor and administrator at the University of California. While Amar extols the University as being the greatest public university system in the world, he highlights a few challenges that it faces as it moves forward.
Chapman University law professor Ronald Rotunda critiques the trend in institutions of higher education to instruct professors and students to avoid “microaggressions” and to give “trigger warnings.”
UC Davis law professor Vikram David Amar addresses some initial criticism of discrimination lawsuits filed by Asian groups and individuals against Harvard and the University of North Carolina for alleged unfair treatment in admissions. Without predicting where the litigations will ultimately lead, Amar identifies and debunks three flawed arguments against the lawsuits.
U.C. Davis law professor Vikram David Amar and guest columnist and dean of UC Davis law school Kevin R. Johnson offer five ways in which law students might better use the U.S. News law school rankings when they are released.
George Washington law professor and economist Neil Buchanan explains why education of its citizens, while critically important, is not the only factor in securing this country’s greatness.
George Washington University law professor and economist Neil Buchanan discusses what we should expect from the people whom we hire to teach our children and dispels the notion of the “superstar” teacher.
Hofstra University law professor Joanna Grossman discusses the recent crackdown by the federal Office for Civil Rights on sexual assault and violence in schools.
UC Davis law professor Vikram David Amar continues his discussion of the low 2014 bar pass rates in California and throughout the country.
Hofstra University law professor describes the recent clarification by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights of its prior guidance on the legality of single-sex classes in public schools. Grossman explains why this clarification was needed and what issues it seeks to address.
U.C. Davis law professor Vikram David Amar comments on the lower bar pass rate for the July 2014 exam as compared to prior years. Amar discusses the response by the exam’s creators and how educators, practitioners, and others can use the incident to explore broader questions regarding the licensure requirements for the practice of law.
Cornell University law professor Sherry Colb comments on the new California law defining rape as the absence of affirmative consent, rather than as the presence of indicators of non-consent. Colb praises the law and addresses some of the arguments in opposition to it.
George Washington University law professor and economist Neil Buchanan discusses a recent ruling by a California superior court judge striking down that state’s tenure system for public school teachers. Buchanan explains why the ruling lacks adequate basis and argues that tenure is actually an essential part of attracting and retaining talented teachers.
George Washington University law professor and economist Neil Buchanan explains why cash payments to college athletes does not solve the problems plaguing college athletics.
UC Davis law professor Vikram David Amar discusses the claim that the University of California is admitting out-of-state and international students to the exclusion of California students. Amar describes some of the factual misunderstandings leading to this criticism and explains why the University’s present solution actually represents a balancing act that benefits California students.
George Washington University law professor and economist Neil Buchanan explains why college sports should be treated as a source of funding for their nonprofit universities rather than as for-profit businesses.