Following is the full text of the section of chapter eight of “The Affirmative Action Hoax” by Steven Farron that deals with Asians benefiting from affirmative action (reproduced with his permission). He did mention that a new edition of this book is coming out soon. I strongly recommend purchasing it and reading it if it is anything like the first edition. Presumably, it’s even better:
Thus, Asians should logically be the main victims of affirmative action. But, in fact, they are not. In The Bell Curve, Herrnstein and Murray (1996: 451-3) list the average Verbal+Math SAT scores of Whites, Asians, and Blacks at twenty-six prestigious colleges. In most of the colleges on their list, Asians have higher average Verbal+Math SAT scores than Whites. But the differences between Whites and Asians are neither great nor universal. More importantly, the combined Verbal+Math SAT score is misleading since Verbal-SAT is more important than Math. In 2004, the average SAT Verbal and Math scores of Whites were 528 and 531; of Asians, 507 and 578. On ACT’s, which have subtests on English, Mathematics, Reading Comprehension and Science Reasoning, the average White and Asian scores are nearly identical.
Lerner and Nagai (2002) provided the median Verbal and Math SAT scores of Whites and Asians at twenty-seven American colleges. At twenty-four, the median White Verbal score was higher than the median Asian Verbal score. At fourteen of these colleges, the gap was thirty points or more. The Asian median Verbal score exceeded the White median at only three colleges, all by a small margin (ten, ten, and twenty-five points). The median White Math score was higher at two of these twenty-seven colleges; at six, they were the same; at nineteen, the median Asian Math score was higher. But at only six of these, was the gap thirty points or more. Lerner and Nagai (2002) also provided the median White and Asian ACT scores at twenty-two colleges. At fourteen, the median White score was higher. At four of these colleges, it was higher by three or more points (on a thirty-six point scale). At five colleges, the median White and Asian ACT scores were the same. At only three was the median Asian ACT score higher, all by less than three points.
The most frequently used evidence of anti-Asian discrimination was from its supposed existence at Berkeley’s undergraduate division. In fact, in the late 1980s, when this accusation was constantly being made, of the California high school graduates who were academically eligible for Berkeley (on the basis of high school grades and SAT scores), 67.7 percent where White and 19.9 percent were Asian. But only 32.6 percent of the 1989 Berkeley freshman class was White and 21.2 percent were Asian. (Of California high school graduates, 61.6 percent were White, and 8.6 percent were Asian (Sarich 1990-91; 73-4, 76).)
Discrimination in admission to professional schools is more serious than in admission to college. Every high school graduate can find an American college that will accept him, but that is not true of professional schools. In 1992, the average LSAT score of first-year Asians at American law schools was .32 of a standard deviation lower than the average LSAT score of White first-year students (Herrnstein and Murray 1996: 455-6). In 1990-91, 1.55 more Asians were admitted to American law schools than would have been admitted on the basis of undergraduate grades and LSAT scores alone, and only .80 as many Whites (Wightman 1997: 16). As a result, when that class graduated from law school, 80.75 percent of the Asians, but 91.93 percent of the Whites, passed the bar exam on the first try (Wightman 1998: 27). Law schools have practiced that level of pro-Asian discrimination for decades. Only 60 percent of the Asians admitted to American law schools in 1976 would have been admitted if they were White (Welch and Gruhl 1998: 58). As with all affirmative action programs, the socioeconomic background of the recipients is not considered. For instance, Ron Chen got into Rutgers Law School through its Minority Student Program even though both his parents had PhDs and he attended one of the most elite private schools in the United States (Exeter) and Dartmouth. He told the Washington Post that he needed affirmative action to get into law school because “I goofed off in college” (Russakoff 1995).
Similarly, in 1994, 93.4 and 96.3 percent of White medical students passed Step I and II respectively, of the United States Medical Licensing Examination (which replaced Parts I and II of the NBME exam) on the first try. Only 86.8 percent and 87.6 percent of Asians passed them on the first try (Case, et al. 1996: S91).
In Section A of Chapter 9, I provided statistics on the rate at which teachers pass teacher competence tests in various states. In all, Whites’ pass rates are much higher than Asians’. In the same section, I quote the average scores of Whites and Blacks at different educational levels on the prose literacy, document literacy, and quantitative literacy tests of the National Assessment of Adult Literacy. I will now add that on all three tests, the average score of Whites is higher than that of Asian/Pacific Islanders at every educational level – high school graduates, graduates of two-year colleges, graduates of four-year colleges, and graduates of graduate and professional schools. And most of the differences are substantial.
In all spheres of American life besides university admissions, Asians are the greatest beneficiaries of affirmative action. Many university faculties and corporations recruit Asians to increase their proportion of minorities. For instance, in 1995, when New Hampshire’s population was 97.4 percent White, the University of New Hampshire announced that it intended to increase its minority undergraduate enrollment to 7.5 percent by 2005 and the proportion of its minority tenure-track professors to 7.5 percent by 2000. Two-thirds of its minority professors are Asian. In 1995, only 0.84 percent of New Hampshire’s population was Asian (Gorov 1995). Similarly, heroic efforts by the University of Michigan raised the proportion of its faculty who are minorities to 14.1 percent in 1995, more than half of whom (7.3 percent) were Asian (4.9 percent were Black and 1.9 percent Hispanic). Blacks comprised 13.9 percent of Michigan’s population, Hispanics 2.2 percent, and Asians 1.1 percent (Lynch 1997: 277-8, 312).
Asians are also by far the greatest beneficiaries of government set-aside contracts for minority business enterprises (MBEs). In 1996, Asians were 12 percent of the minority population of the United States, but they received 28 percent of MBE contracts (Graham 2002: 164). The Asian proportion of America’s minority population has increased rapidly since 1996. Therefore, the proportion of minority set-aside contracts that Asians receive must now be considerably higher than 28 percent.
Consequently, 61 percent of Asians in California voted against the 1996 referendum banning the California government from practicing racial discrimination (Beinart 1998).
This is undoubtedly surprising to people who have not studied affirmative action carefully because they constantly hear and read about its adverse effect on Asians. The reason is that opponents of affirmative action try any trick they can to avoid defending its real victims: Whites.