Wednesday, May 30, 2012

But can Professor Warren speak Spanish?

One good thing has emerged from Elizabeth Warren's apparently bogus claim that she is (or was!) 1/32nd Native American when she applied for the faculty of Harvard Law School. Not only the good professor, but also the university, trumpeted this trivial and probably imaginary connection. Later she dropped the claim, probably because she didn't want people thinking that she was hired only because Harvard was punching another hole in its affirmative action card.

The result has been to shine a light on this absurd game of quotas for oppressed minorities. For example, here's a thoughtful piece about affirmative action at the University of Texas. Says the author in passing: "Of course, there aren’t many Native Americans in Texas..."

Hold on! What about all those Mexicans who crossed the Rio Grande in recent years and decided to stay in Texas? Don't they count as Native Americans? I understand that term to be a politically correct replacement for "Indians," and what are those Mexican immigrants but Indians of a lot purer ancestry than Professor Warren?

Or perhaps the term really means "Native United Statesians," in which case I suppose the immigrants are Native Mexicans. But isn't a Native Mexican as authentic as a Native American or a Native Canadian? Or is it that they qualify first as "Hispanics," and Hispanics have a more generous quota at Harvard? Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

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