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Dr. Lawrence Bacow
Dear President Bacow,
I am writing to express my disappointment and outrage that Harvard University was recently named to the list of the Top Ten Most Racist Colleges & Universities released by the David Horowitz Freedom Center.
As the report notes, Harvard undergraduate admissions uses discriminatory and stereotypical ratings of Asian applicants’ personalities as “lacking” and “one-dimensional” to reduce their chances of obtaining admission.
In 2014, Harvard was sued in federal district court by a coalition named Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) for allegedly violating Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits all schools which receive federal funds from discriminating on the basis of race.
Peter Arcidiacono, an economist at Duke University who testified in court on behalf of SFFA, concluded that Asian-American applicants have the lowest chance of admission to Harvard out of all races despite scoring highest in all objective measurements of achievement.
“Race plays a significant role in admissions decisions,” Arcidiacono wrote in his expert report. “Consider the example of an Asian-American applicant who is male, is not disadvantaged, and has other characteristics that result in a 25% chance of admission. Simply changing the race of this applicant to white—and leaving all his other characteristics the same—would increase his chance of admission to 36%. Changing his race to Hispanic (and leaving all other characteristics the same) would increase his chance of admission to 77%. Changing his race to African-American (again, leaving all other characteristics the same) would increase his chance of admission to 95%.”
“It turns out that the suspicions of Asian-American alumni, students and applicants were right all along,” Students for Fair Admissions concluded in a court document. “Harvard today engages in the same kind of discrimination and stereotyping that it used to justify quotas on Jewish applicants in the 1920s and 1930s.” I respectfully ask that you immediately begin the process of reforming Harvard’s undergraduate admissions system in order to eliminate all racial discrimination.