Affirmative action in the world of higher education can be an incredibly difficult topic to address. While many people have strong opinions about how the policy affects race in college admissions, I, as an enslaved person, have uniquely personal ties to the issue.
Back in the year 1823, I decided to become a slave so one day my descendants could steal college admissions slots. It was a tough decision, but boy, did it pay off big-time!
When I opted to become a slave and work in the cotton fields of South Carolina, I did it with the hope that in 200 years, my progeny would have an unfair advantage while applying to colleges. Deep down, I knew that if I sold my body and worked for no pay at the hands of my sadistic, violent master, then one day, my great-great-great-great-great-grandchild would be able to prevent some middle-class white kid from getting into their dream school.
Sorry, Colton! Thanks to me, your 1530 SAT score won’t be enough!
I remember it like it was yesterday. I was living in Senegal, a free and happy man. But then, I had an idea! What if I got on a ship and went to a land I’d never heard of—a place where I knew no one, did not speak the language, and spent 16 hours a day doing forced labor while getting whipped and beaten? “Yes,” I thought. “If that’s what it takes for my progeny to bump someone just as deserving from the admissions list, I’ll do it.”
It was the perfect plan. If I played my cards right, I could all but ensure that my descendants would apply to schools, give the college no choice but to admit them, and force some so-so white kids into their second- or third-choice schools.
And my foolish master was none the wiser! Ha-ha!
For decades, I was paid nothing. I was physically and mentally abused, and often beaten to the point of death. But the thing that got me through? Thinking about some poor Caucasian high school senior running to their mailbox and opening an envelope from their favorite college only to see the word “rejected.” And the only thing they did wrong was the crime of being white!
Seriously, take it from my descendants, who then chose to be segregated, imprisoned, and lynched for a couple of hundred years. In the end, the struggle we chose for ourselves was totally worth it!
Ultimately, becoming a slave was dehumanizing, backbreaking work, but the whole time, I never forgot why I woke up every day and picked cotton on the plantation. One day I knew that my descendants would destroy the college admissions process from the inside out.
That is, until affirmative action ended. What the fuck?