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1 - The Impact of Affirmative Action
on Whites

Web Posted 8/15/02

The article "The Social Construction of Reverse Discrimination:  The Impact of Affirmative Action on Whites" was published in the Journal of Intergroup Relations, Volume XXXVIII, No. 4 Winter 2001/2002, pages 33 - 44.  Reprinted with permission.

The original page breaks and page numbers as they appeared in the original JIR publication have been duplicated below in order to facilitate discussion, academic citations, and references to this article.

This article has been reproduced from a scan using optical character recognition software.  Every effort has been made to accurately reproduce the text exactly as it appeared in the original JIR publication.  Any typographical errors may be presumed to be the responsibility of Adversity.Net

JIR p. 33

The Social Construction of Reverse Discrimination: The Impact of Affirmative Action on Whites


          One of the most controversial issues in the affirmative action debate is its perceived negative impact on large numbers of whites, especially white males. Public opinion polls show that between half and three-fourths of whites believe that, as a group, they are routinely discriminated against. A 1999 poll, commissioned by the Seattle Times, found that 75% of whites agreed with the statement saying that 'Unqualified minorities get hired over qualified whites' most of the time or some of the time. Two-thirds said the same about promotion and 63% said the same about college admission (Seattle Times, 1999; Steeh & Krysan, 1996).

          This phenomenon, where whites believe that they have less opportunity because of affirmative action, goes by a variety of names including 'affirmative discrimination' (Glazer, 1975), 'discrimination in reverse' (Gross, 1978) and 'preferential treatment.' The most popular term, however, is 'reverse discrimination.' The earliest use of this term dates back to the late 1960s and it has been employed by critics of affirmative action ever since. The Internet has numerous reverse discrimination sites, the most sophisticated of which is

          The language used to analyze a problem is critical and opponents of affirmative action are well aware of this. The (2001) website contains the following introduction to their section 'Terms and Definitions of the Racial and Gender Preferences Movement:'

The quota industry works overtime to invent terms that they think will sell racial and gender quotas, preferences, targets and goals. A new term seems to be invented every week. Language is very important in our fight for color-blind justice. Language shapes our perception of our environment. Don't let the quota industry define your environment!


(1)Fred L. Pincus is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Maryland Baltimore County. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the 2001 Annual Convention of the American Sociological Association, Anaheim, CA, August 18, 2001. The author would like to thank Natalie J. Sokoloff and Howard J. Ehrlich for their comments on earlier drafts of this paper.

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          Of course, the anti-affirmative action forces are also trying to use language to define the environment. The goal of this article is to demonstrate that using the concept of reverse discrimination or any of its euphemisms does not adequately portray the way in which whites are impacted by affirmative action. According to Ganason and Modighani (1987),

Every policy issue is contested in a symbolic arena. Advocates of one or another persuasion attempt to give their own meaning to the issue and to events that may affect its outcome. Their weapons are metaphors, catch phrases, and other condensing symbols that frame the issue in a particular fashion ... The ideas in this cultural catalogue are organized and clustered: we encounter them not as individual items but as packages. (p. 143)

          There are a number of questions that need to be answered before we can understand the package of reverse discrimination. What central idea (frame) will be used to view the phenomenon? Which labels will be used to describe the phenomenon? What cultural symbols are attached to it? How will we view this phenomenon in comparison to discrimination against people of color and women? Who is doing the analysis and what interests do they have? What remedial policies will be suggested?

          In fact, Gamson and Modiglioni (1987) argue that there were three different packages that were available to describe affirmative action in the late 1980s. The 'Remedial Action" package argued that race-conscious remedies were needed to overcome the continuing effects of racial discrimination. The impact on whites was generally ignored in this package. The 'Delicate Balance' package argued for the need to help old victims of discrimination without creating undue pain for new victims (i.e., whites). The emphasis here was on using race as a factor in decision-making without making it the factor.

          The third package, 'No Preferential Treatment,' argued that all race-conscious policies were wrong and that emphasis should be placed on equal opportunity for individuals rather than on statistical parity for groups. There were also several 'subpackages' under the general heading of no preferential treatment. The 'Reverse Discrimination' subpackage argued that affirmative action violated the rights of whites. The 'Undeserving Advantage' subpackage argued that affirmative action gives minorities opportunities that they did not earn. The 'Blacks Hurt" subpackage argues that recipients of affirmative action are stigmatized. Finally, the 'Divide and Conquer' subpackage argues that poor whites have problems too.

          Gamson and Modigliani (1987) analyzed how common these various packages appeared in the media between 1969 and 1984. Their main conclusion is that 'remedial action was once the dominant package but by 1984 had lost this initial advantage to no preferential treatment' (p. 163). In addition, when

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the no preferential treatment package appeared, the reverse discrimination subpackage was invoked 65% of the time.

          Each of these packages and subpackages has been socially constructed. They are interpretations of reality, not reality itself. If repeated often enough and if believed by enough people, however, a socially constructed concept is viewed as reality. In this case, the phenomenon becomes reified (Berger & Luckman, 1967). This is what has happened with reverse discrimination. Whether by conscious design or not, the term reverse discrimination inflames passions, exaggerates the negative impact on whites and promotes a conservative and erroneous view of race and gender relations in the U.S. Therefore, if one is interested in understanding the impact of affirmative action on whites, the concept of reverse discrimination is not a useful tool.

          In the first part of this article, I would like to review some of the hidden assumptions that are contained in the concept of reverse discrimination. Then, I wish to review what we know about how affirmative action affects whites. To the extent that affirmative action has a negative impact on some whites, I suggest substituting the more neutral term of 'reduced opportunity' for the more pejorative concept of reverse discrimination.


Hidden Assumptions of Reverse Discrimination

          After spending a great deal of time reviewing the literature that criticizes affirmative action, I have identified a number of themes that commonly emerge in reverse discrimination discourse or that exist just below the surface level. By bringing these themes to the surface, it becomes easier to understand why reverse discrimination is not a useful analytical concept.

          1. The discourse of discrimination implies illegitimacy and illegality.  Any negative impact that affirmative action may have on whites is seen as equivalent to the illegal discrimination that has been faced by people of color and women for centuries. Some affirmative action critics do not even like to use the term 'reverse' since they say that there is only one kind of discrimination.

Adversity.Net doesn't especially care for the term reverse discrimination because there is only one kind of discrimination, and that is old-fashioned racial and sexual discrimination. However, we grudgingly use this term since it is so widely understood to mean illegal discrimination against anyone who is not on the government's list of 'historically disadvantaged.'

          Consider the case of a previously all white, male agency that is under a consent decree to hire people of color and women. By the logic of reverse discrimination, a qualffied white male who did not get the position is just as harmed as the dozens or hundreds of qualified people of color and women that have been denied employment in this agency in the past.

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          2. Color-blind, presumably neutral meritocratic standards are the only legitimate way to select employees, accept college students and grant contracts.  Any race-conscious decision-making is seen as discrimination (Fried, 1999). The concept of merit is generally viewed as an objective phenomenon that can be easily determined rather than something that is inherently subjective. Test scores are elevated to some abstract level of scientific purity, especially in the areas of civil service hiring and promotion as well as college admission. Grade-point-average is also seen as a major measure of academic success, except when comparing urban public school students with their counterparts in private and suburban public schools.

          3. Race and gender discrimination is seen largely as a thing of the past.  It is no longer seen as a major issue in the post-civil rights era. The economic disparities between whites and blacks are explained by the latter's defective culture and family structure (Hunt, 1996; Knight, 1998). Gender disparities are explained by personal choices made by women who value family over employment (Swim & Cohen, 1997). Given this analysis, which is an important part of conservative ideology, affirmative action is seen as unnecessary as well as illegitimate (Pincus, 2000).

          4. The existence of contemporary white privilege is denied.  Reverse discrimination discourse either ignores or denies any possibility that most whites have benefited from past discrimination even though neither they nor their families actually practiced discrimination. During the post-World War II housing boom, for example, blacks were explicitly discriminated against by banks and by the Federal Housing Authority in terms of getting mortgages. Most of today's white homeowners are more likely than blacks to have benefited from the equity that their parents and grandparents had accumulated (Lipsitz, 1998). This kind of argument is generally ignored by affirmative action critics who generally employ the 'level playing field' view of contemporary race and gender relations.

          5. The majority of white males are said to be victims of reverse discrimination.  The concept is used in it's broadest meaning and suggests widespread victimization. Some authors even use the terms reverse discrimination and affirmative action interchangeably. In a thoughtful retrospective on affirmative action, Charles Fried (1999), former Solicitor General in the second Reagan administration, uses the concepts of 'affirmative action' or 'preferential treatment' throughout the article. In making the argument that there should be time limits on affirmative action at the end of the article, he slips in another phrase: "But if 'all deliberate speed' was fast enough for desegregation, then surely nothing speedier is required for phasing out reverse discrimination" (italics mine) (Fried, 1999, p. 56).

          6. The Policy of affirmative action is generally equated with quotas and preferences.  While these policies certainly exist, they make up a very small aspect of what is normally referred to as affirmative action. For example, the

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federal affirmative action regulations of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs are usually ignored even though more than 200,000 contractors must comply with them. These guidelines require affirmative action plans with goals and timetables. Contractors are required to make a 'good faith effort' to reach their goal but the final hiring decision is supposed to be meritocratic (Wilcher, 1995). The only time reverse discrimination discourse even touches on these regulations is to erroneously state that goals and quotas are the same thing.

          7. Although people who use the reverse discrimination discourse claim to be 'anti-preference" they ignore or condone several important non race/gender preference programs.  Most glaringly are the legacy policies where selective colleges give preference to the children of alumni, most of whom are white and wealthy (Larew, 1991). Veterans have also received preferences in federal civil service jobs for over a century (Skrentny, 1996). Employers can hire their friends and family members with impunity. Yet, these three preference programs are perceived as uncontroversial. The supposedly anti-preference views of reverse discrimination discourse focus only on race/gender preferences.

          8. Reverse discrimination is usually discussed only as a racial issue although evidence suggests that gender is at least as important.  Studies of reverse discrimination lawsuits show that there are more gender-related complaints (men saying they were discriminated against because of their gender) than race-related complaints (Burstein, 1991). Frederick Lynch (1989), an affirmative action critic, says that he is more concerned with racial issues because "Quotas for minorities have more emotional and political bite than [quotas for women]." If the true role of gender were understood, would the whole concept of reverse discrimination would have less "emotional and political bite?"

          In short, reverse discrimination is more than just a description of whites being harmed by affirmative action. It is a socially constructed, ideological package that contains an entire set of conservative attitudes about the state of race and gender relations today. It is a codeword for those angry whites who feel threatened by increased competition from people of color and women. Although reverse discrimination is seen as something real, it is actually a socially constructed interpretation of reality that exaggerates and misinterprets the problems that whites genuinely have.


Reduced (Balanced) Opportunity

          Dispensing with the concept of reverse discrimination does not mean that some whites, especially white males, may have fewer opportunities for jobs, promotions, college seats or government contracts as a result of affirmative action. In a zero-sum competitive society, if one group receives more opportunities, other groups will receive less. While affirmative action critics view this

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as reverse discrimination, it is also possible to see it as a relatively privileged group like white males losing some of their privileges.

          In Gamson and Modigliani's (1987) terms, we need another package to understand the impact of affirmative action on whites. Since packages are cultural phenomenon, a single social scientist cannot simply invent one. However, I would like to offer a separate concept -- reduced opportunity -- to explore the impact of affirmative action on whites. I would like to define "reduced opportunity" as an instance where a white does not get something because of affirmative action that they probably would have gotten without affirmative action. The 'something' in the definition refers to things like jobs, promotions, college seats and government contracts. This concept does not carry the ideological baggage of reverse discrimination and could be more amenable to empirical investigation.

          There are several ways that affirmative action can result in reduced opportunities for whites. First, the OFCCP guidelines are intended to create increased competition by getting more people of color and women to apply for jobs, promotions, pay increases, etc. Because of the increased competition, white males might well face reduced opportunities because they can no longer take full advantage of the privileges they received by past race and gender discrimination. However, this reduced opportunity has nothing to do with what we normally call discrimination. This is especially true since the OFCCP guidelines call for meritocratic decision-making in terms of actual hiring/promotion. The purpose of the OFCCP guidelines is to increase the diversity of qualified people who apply for jobs/promotions (Wilcher, 1995).

          In another area of affirmative action, some hiring/promotion criteria have been redefined so that they are job related. Requiring an applicant to have a minimum height, lift a certain weight or achieve a certain score on a standardized test is not legitimate unless it is job-related. In some occupations like police and firefighting, redefined standards have caused increased competition for jobs/promotions from people of color, women and from other white males who did not meet the original criteria. It is unclear if this reduces opportunities for white males, in general, since shorter, weaker white men, as well as women, are the beneficiaries of these revised criteria. It is difficult for some to abandon the traditional idea that the most deserving candidate for being a firefighter or police officer is the person (male) who can lift the largest weight. Merit is a complex phenomenon.

          The policy of using race or gender as one of many factors can also bring reduced opportunity to white males, especially in higher education. As of this writing, the policy is still legal outside of Washington, California and Texas. However, Kane (1998) estimates that even if all the blacks and Hispanics at selective colleges gave up their seats to whites and Asians, the acceptance rates for whites and Asians would only increase by one of two percent; most would still not be admitted due to selectivity issues. Kane offers the analogy

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of trying to find a space in a crowded parking lot and seeing an empty handicapped space. The angry driver may think that she could have had the space if it were not reserved for the handicapped, forgetting about the many other drivers that had passed by the space before her. The problem is that there are not enough spaces to begin with.

          Next, race or gender quotas that are often part of consent decrees are the most explicit causes to reduced opportunities among whites and males. In these policies, qualified people of color or women could be hired/promoted/admitted to college over more qualified whites and males. The important issue here, which is often not discussed in the reverse discrimination discourse, is the stringent legal criteria that are required for quotas to be imposed. In order for quotas to be constitutional, the judge must be convinced that the employer discriminated in the past and that nothing short of a quota will work to prevent future discrimination. Since this is a difficult standard to achieve, there are relatively few legal quotas in the country. Although no one knows the exact number, my guess is that it would be in the hundreds rather than the thousands. Again, relatively few workers would be covered by legal quota systems.

          Another area of affirmative action permits federal, state and local governments, under certain circumstances, to set aside a certain percentage of contracts to go to people of color and women. The goal of these policies is to overturn the blatant racism/sexism that still exists, especially in the construction industry (Feagin & Imani, 1994). In spite of these set-asides, White males are still heavily over represented among government contractors although they are probably less over represented than they would be without the set asides. More importantly, recent Supreme Court decisions have made it more difficult to legally justify these set asides at all levels of government.

          Finally, one of the biggest sources of reverse discrimination complaints involve issues like pay, disciplinary procedures and work assignments (Burstein, 1991). Examples would involve allegations that an Hispanic worker got a raise while a white one did not, or a man was disciplined while a women [sic] would not have been for the same situation. While these situations could involve problems for some white males, affirmative action policies are not necessarily involved. For example, an Hispanic supervisor could be illegally favoring Hispanics over whites when grantingraises or a woman supervisor might illegally discipline a male but not a female. On the other hand, it is also possible that a white male supervisor might give higher raises to blacks and women than whites with the goal of increasing opportunities for people of color and women in the work place. These can certainly involve reduced opportunities for white males but involve cases with questionable legal status.

          The purpose of this discussion is to demonstrate that there are logical possibilities of reduced opportunities for white males stemming from affirmative action. Most of these reduced opportunities are probably legal under current

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law although some are certainly illegal. The next issue is how many white males actually experience reduced opportunity.


Incidents of Reduced Opportunity

          Earlier I alluded to how half to two-thirds of whites and males believe that reverse discrimination is common. Some of the polls asked respondents whether they, personally, had lost a job, promotion, college seat, etc. because of affirmative action. When the question is phrased this way, the number of whites and males who respond 'yes' drops significantly to between 2% and 13% (Steeh & Krysan, 1996). These numbers are also considerably lower than the percentage of people of color and women that respond 'yes' to similar questions. In a recent survey by the National Conference for Community and Justice (2000), for example, 13% of whites said that they had been discriminated against in the past month at restaurants, while shopping, during worship, at work or in other situations. On the other hand, 16% of Latinos, 31% of Asians and 42% of blacks said 'yes' to the same question.

          Several studies of court cases also show that the number of racial discrimination cases filed by whites and sex discrimination cases filed by men ranges from 2% to 5% of all discrimination cases. The remaining cases involve charges of discrimination by people of color, women, the elderly, the handicapped, etc. (Burstein, 1991; "Reverse discrimination against whites is rare," 1995). Another study of complaints filed with the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission between 1987 and 1994 revealed that only 4% involved changes of reverse discrimination (Reskin, 1998).

          Both the opinion surveys and the court cases show relatively few whites feel that they have been discriminated against. Equally important is the fact that not all the perceived discrimination is due to affirmative action. Many whites and men feel that they were mistreated by prejudiced supervisors and co-workers which often has nothing to do with affnmative action programs.

          The next question is whether or not the charges of discrimination are actually valid. Just because someone, whether they are white or a person of color, reports that they have been discriminated against does not mean that they actually have. Unfortunately, we can not say anything about the 2%-13% of whites and males in public opinion polls who answered 'yes' to the discrimination question. The pollsters did not get any additional information to evaluate.

          We can, however, come to some tentative conclusions from the court and EEOC cases. In one study (Burstein, 1991), one-third of the reverse discrimination cases were decided in favor of the plaintiff, compared to 58% of the "regular" discrimination cases being decided in favor of the plaintiff. In another study ("Reverse discrimination against whites is rare," 1995), only 6% of the reverse discrimination cases were decided in favor of the plaintiff. In a third study (as cited in Reskin, 1998), less than 1% of the reverse discrimina-

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tion EEOC complaints filed in 1994 were deemed credible. These studies suggest that relatively few reverse discrimination court cases and EEOC complaints have legal merit.

          Another question involves the extent to which people who were discriminated against were harmed economically. Herring et al. (1998) compared the incomes of those who said they were discriminated against with those who said they were not discriminated against in different groups. Using a multi-variate statistical technique which controlled for a number of factors simultaneously, they found that the incomes of blacks who said they were discrinainated against were $6200 smaller than those blacks who said that they were not discriminated against. Hispanics who were discriminated against had an $11,000 disadvantage over Hispanics who were not discriminated against. On the other hand, whites and women who said they were discriminated against had much smaller disadvantages relative to whites and women who said they were not discriminated against; indeed, the income differences were so small that they did not reach the level of statistical significance. These findings suggest that blacks and Hispanics who are discriminated against suffer greater economic harm than whites and women. Unfortunately, no data were provided for men.

          Consequently, we can conclude that affirmative action does result in reduced opportunities for a small number of whites and males. From the data discussed earlier, my guess is that we are talking about less than 5% of the white male populations and possibly as low as 1-2%. This is much lower than affirmative action critics allege. Much of this reduced opportunity is legal, either a result of increased competition or of other legal government policies; whites and males have little legal recourse. Yet, some of the reduced opportunity is illegal and whites could make use of various antidiscrimination policies and laws in order to seek justice.



          Why is it important to distinguish between reverse discrimination and reduced opportunity? First, it is important to discredit the entire reverse discrimination discourse with its empirical and theoretical exaggerations and distortions. Discrimination against people of color and women is still the major problem according to the self-report data in the polls as well as the studies of formal complaints. Color-blind policies may resonate as powerful political symbols but they will not solve the existing problems. Preferences and quotas only account for a small portion of affirmative action policies. Using the term reverse discrimination, and others associated with this package, needlessly fans the flames of racism and sexism.

          Second, it is much easier to talk to affirmative action skeptics when using the concept of reduced opportunity. Skeptics may be more likely to accept the small degree of reduced opportunity that results from goals and timetables if

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they understand that it is a result of increased competition rather than quotas. The empirical evidence showing that only a small number of whites and males are negatively affected by affirmative action may ease some of the hysteria caused by the reverse discriminntion discourse.

          Third, it is easier to talk about the effects of affirmative action on whites to affirmative action supporters. It is important that they not deny that a small number of whites males and an even smaller number of white females are, in fact, negatively effected. It is important to address the issue of what, if anything, should be done about this small group of whites. Those who have been discriminated against in the legal sense have recourse to the legal system. They can file complaints with the EEOC; they can sue universities like Alan Bakke did when he was denied admission to medical school; or they can sue the federal government like Randy Pech did in the Adarand case when he was not granted a government contract due to set-aside policies. If they can prove their case, they can get compensation.

          However, what about those whites who have experienced reduced opportunity because of legal affirmative action programs? Hill (1995) offers the following message to white males in terms of admission to selective institutions of higher education:

These are the concerns that we felt made necessary the policy under which the university is temporarily giving special attention to women and minorities. We respect your rights to formal justice and to a policy guided by the university's educational and research mission as well as its social responsibilities. Our policy in no way implies the view that your opportunities are less important than others', but we estimate (roughly, as we must) that as a white male you have probably had advantages and encouragement that for a long time have been systematically, unfairly, insultingly unavailable to most women and minorities. We deplore invidious race and gender distinctions; we hope that no misunderstanding of our program will prolong them. Unfortunately, nearly all blacks and women have been disadvantaged to some degree by bias against their groups, and it is impractical for universities to undertake the detailed investigations that would be needed to assess how much particular individuals have suffered or gained from racism and sexism. We appeal to you to share the historical values of fair opportunity and mutual respect that underlie this policy and hope that, even though its effects may be personally disappointing, you can see the policy as an appropriate response to the current situation. (p. 190)

          Hill is not under the illusion that this type of message will automatically be embraced by anti-affirmative action whites. Educating whites about affirma-

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tive action is part of a larger process of educating whites about the realities of race and gender relations in the 21st Century.

          Ezorsky (1991) has a more concrete proposal. Whites and males who can prove that they have been negatively impacted by legal affirmative action policies should receive some sort of financial compensation from a special program that is funded by a progressive tax on the wealthy. In effect, this would be compensation for sacrificing their own opportunities for the public good.

Neither Hills message, nor Ezorsky's proposal, may contribute to solving the problem of reduced opportunity. However, this is certainly a more constructive way to begin a conversation with skeptical whites than by invoking an abstract, ahistorical call for color-blind, meritocratic decision making. It is certainly better than employing the conservative, misleading discourse of reverse discrimination.


References (2001).

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Burstein, P. (199 1)  "Reverse discrimination" cases in federal courts: Legal mobilization by a countermovement. Sociological Quarterly, 32, 511-528.

Ezorsky, G. (1991) Racism and justice: The case for affirmative action. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

Feagin, J, & Imani, N. (1994). Racial barriers to African American entrepreneurship: An exploratory study. Social Problems, 4, 562-584.

Fried, C. (1999, Septernber/October). Uneasy preferences: Affirmative action, in retrospect. The American Prospect, pp. 50-56.

Gamson, W. A., & Modigliani, A. (1987). The changing culture of affirmative action. Research in Political Sociology, 3, 137-177.

Glazer, N. (1975). Affirmative discrimination: Ethnic inequality and public policy. New York: Basic Books.

Gross, B. R. (1978). Discrimination in reverse: Is turnabout fair play. New York: New York University Press.

Herring, C., Thomas, M. E., Durr, M., & Horton, H. D. (1998). Does race matter?: The determinants and consequences of self-reports of discrimination victimization. Race and Society, 1, 109-123.

Hill, T. E., Jr. (1995). The message of affirmative action. In S. M. Cahn (Ed.), The afermative action debate, (pp. 169-191). New York: Routledge.

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Hunt, M. (1996). The individual, society or both?: A comparison of black, latino and white beliefs about the causes of poverty. Social Forces, 75, 293-322.

Kane, T. J. (1998). Misconceptions in the debate over affirmative action in college admissions. In G. Orfield & E. Miller (Eds.), Chilling admissions: The affirmative action crisis and the search for alternatives (pp. 17-32). Cambridge, MA: The Harvard University Civil Rights Project.

Knight, K. (1998). In their own words: Citizen's explanations of inequality between the races. In J. Hurvitz & M. Peffley (Eds.), Perception and Prejudice: Race and Politics in the United States (pp. 202-247). New Haven, CT: Yale University.

Larew, J. (1991, June). Why are droves of unqualified, unprepared kids getting into our colleges?: Because their dads are alumni. The Washington Monthly, p. 28.

Lipsitz, G. (1998). The possessive investment in whiteness: How white people profit from identity politics, Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

Lynch, F. (1989). Invisible victims: White males and the crisis of affirmative action. New York: Greenwood.

National Conference for Community and Justice. (2000) Taking America's Pulse II. http://www.nccj.orenccj3.nsf/Organization/Spotlight.

Pincus, P. L. (2000). Reverse discrimination vs. white privilege: An empirical study of alleged victims of affirmative action. Race and Society. 3, 1-22.

Reskin, B. (1998). The realities of affirmative action in employment. Washington, DC: American Sociological Association.

Reverse Discrimination of Whites is Rare, Labor Study Finds. (1995, March 24). New York Times, p. A23.

Skrentny, J. D. (1996). The ironies of affirmative action: Culture and justice in America. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Seattle Times. (1999) Affirmative Action National Opinion Survey. Seattle, WA.  Elway Research Associates.

Steeh, C., & Krysan, M. (1996). Affirmative action and the public: 1970-1995. Public Opinion Quarterly, 60, 128-158.

Swim, J. K, & Cohen, L. L. (1997). Overt, covert and subtle sexism. Psychology of Women Quarterly, 21, 103-118.

Wilcher, S. J. (1995).  Statement of Shirley J. Wilcher, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Federal Contract Compliance, Employment Standards Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, before the House Committee on Economic and Educational Opportunities, Subcommittee on Employer and Employee Relations, June 21 1995.


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