While eating a bowl of fruit last week, the now 20-month-old Feminist Octopus was so upset by a blueberry that dropped on the floor that she refused to eat the rest of the fruit. Which made her more upset an hour later, because she was hungry. Which we solved by giving her that same refused and blueberry-deficient bowl of fruit from an hour earlier. Which she ate, of course. Because baby.
I thought of her this morning when learning that Darth Cheeto plans to have the Justice Department look into and possibly end affirmative action in college admissions; the latest attempt to reverse a policy that many very stupid (White) people believe props Black people up by planting our Timberlands on hard-working White people's necks. It, like literally everything else Donald Trump has done and said in the last 18 months, is an unambiguous dog whistle to his base, who seem to believe that niggers are running free in the city — eating chicken in late model Cadillacs and using free government cell phones to order crack and White women from Seamless — while good White folks foot the bill. To them, cutting affirmative action would mean that (plantation) daddy is home, and the darkies have a curfew. And they're so happy to end these non-existent free rides for Blacks that they're willing to throw White women under the bus too.
While people of color, individually and as groups, have been helped by affirmative action in the subsequent years, data and studies suggest women — white women in particular — have benefited disproportionately. According to one study, in 1995, 6 million women, the majority of whom were white, had jobs they wouldn’t have otherwise held but for affirmative action.
Another study shows that women made greater gains in employment at companies that do business with the federal government, which are therefore subject to federal affirmative-action requirements, than in other companies — with female employment rising 15.2% at federal contractors but only 2.2% elsewhere. And the women working for federal-contractor companies also held higher positions and were paid better.
Even in the private sector, the advancements of white women eclipse those of people of color. After IBM established its own affirmative-action program, the numbers of women in management positions more than tripled in less than 10 years. Data from subsequent years show that the number of executives of color at IBM also grew, but not nearly at the same rate.
None of this should be a surprise to anyone who knows anything about this particular grade of Whiteness. It allowed a man whose policies will hurt them more than they'll help them become President just because those same policies might hurt Black and Brown people too. The entire contemporary conservative agenda is driven by this unstoppable and unstoppably White compulsion to cut off their noses to spite their faces. And now, if affirmative action is ended, the Abigail Fishers of the world — hoping, wishing, and praying that the universe considers and treats their half-empty bottle of backwashed Aquafina-ass asses like a case of LaCroix — will have even less opportunity to show the world to Eat, Pray, and be Average as fuck.