The purpose of affirmative action is to provide equal educational opportunities for all minorities, but is this program fair to everyone? Affirmative action was first introduced in the 1960s by President John F. Kennedy in attempt at fighting discrimination during the Civil Rights movement. The term was later enforced by President Johnson when he signed the Executive Order 11246 in 1965. This order primarily focused on providing jobs and education for minorities. For many years, it has been argued whether affirmative action violates the 14th Amendments equal protection clause, which provides equal protection of the laws for all citizens. Although affirmative action was intended to be a temporary aid to ensure equal opportunities for minorities, it has evolved into a system that simply contributes to the racial hostility in present day society. .
The 14th Amendment states that all people born or naturalized in the United States are entitled to equal protection of the laws. In the 1896 case, Plessy v. Ferguson, Plessy boarded a whites only car and was arrested for refusing to leave. Plessy argued that the Separate but Equal doctrine was unconstitutional. This case created the precedent that as long as there were equal rights, separate facilities were not unconstitutional. In the 1954 case of Brown v. Board, the Supreme Court renounced the Separate but Equal doctrine and determined that separating blacks and whites was in reality unconstitutional. These cases are examples of the unclearness the meaning of the 14th Amendment has and is continued to be debated upon.
Affirmative action is a term that is constantly being debated about. Some people believe that it is necessary in order for underrepresented minorities to access educational opportunities, some say that it only contributes to discrimination. Its sole purpose is to give disadvantaged students a chance at achieving their full potential by not only focusing on their grades and test scores.