Racial Balance in Public Schools

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Thirty-nine years after the death of Dr. Martin Luther King, America is still arguing about how to achieve racial equality. In the 1950's, US Supreme Court decisions provided a legal rationale for the civil rights movement and Dr. King. Key among those was Brown versus the Board of Education, which outlawed school segregation on the grounds that separate schools were inherently unequal. Forced busing is a thing of the past, but racial preferences are still used in many places to accomplish ethnic diversity. The current US Supreme Court has been asked to outlaw voluntary affirmative-action plans in Seattle, Washington and Louisville, Kentucky. Does the Constitution require that government be "color blind" or does "equal opportunity" mandate that race be a factor in school admissions? We speak with journalists, educators, public policy experts, civil rights activists and others.




Warren Olney