What is affirmative action? Affirmative action is defined as a tool to monitor the consequences of employment practices. Affirmative action analyses determine whether employment practices result in a diverse applicant pool. The following quote by the former United States Secretary of Labor, Robert Reich, seems to summarize the government's perception of this sensitive subject: .
An Affirmative Action Plan is a "careful, systematic analysis of who you've got, who's out there, and how you are going to broaden opportunity. The plan creates opportunity. It's not a quota machine. The purpose of goals and timetables in Affirmative Action Plans is to get employers to cast a wider net to find qualified applicants." .
Throughout the history of the United States of America the intense and controversial view of "equality" has been a hot topic. With that in mind, our founding fathers of this great country set forth the three theories of what every citizen should be entitled to; freedom, order and equality. Their perception of what equality meant has taken on many different definitions as we as a society have evolved and changed. .
As a human being and especially as a citizen of the United States of America, I believe that civil rights are a very intricate part of our existence. When those rights are violated, a person tends to feel betrayed and persecuted due to their color, race, religion or personal beliefs. Therefore, the context of affirmative action seems to play a part in the balance of equality. .
In 1954, the Supreme Court issued a controversial ruling in the case of Brown vs. The Board of Education. The Court ruled that the concept of "separate, but equal facilities established on the basis of race" be deemed unconstitutional. Since racism and indifference had restricted rights for blacks, executive orders issued by presidents in the 1950s and 1960s established the concept of anti-discrimination measures to guarantee fair treatment of blacks by government contractors.