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Letters to the Editor: If affirmative action disadvantages Asian Americans, why should they support it?

Tourists take pictures of Widener Library on the campus of Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., in 2019.
(Associated Press)

To the editor: When you look at the big picture of having a Harvard degree and its many benefits, you can understand why Asian Americans might sacrifice their social lives to study for hours to get good grades and high test scores to reach their goal. (“The Supreme Court shouldn’t take up the Harvard affirmative action case,” editorial, June 14)

When such efforts fail because of an admissions policy that takes into account an applicant’s skin color and background, can you blame Asian Americans for wanting to undermine affirmative action?

If we are to have meritocracies in employment, college admissions and other fields, then we should rely on proven criteria that have to stand the test of time. If we don’t, then we will elect another incompetent and lawless president like Donald Trump.

Harvard and many of our top universities must ask themselves how many times can they uphold an admissions policy that tests their academic standing?

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Larry Naritomi, Monterey Park

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To the editor: Basing admission “solely on grades and standardized test scores” is not a neutral stance.

How many Black or brown students get a fair shot at either in their formative education? Nowhere near the number of Asian and white students who have this advantage. Yet your editorial seems to assume the “fairness” of these measures.

That assumption is unfounded and extremely harmful.

Julie Santana, Long Beach

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To the editor: As a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, I can say without reservation that there is nothing intrinsically superior about the education that Ivies and other marquee-name schools provide. Their appeal is largely a matter of successful branding.

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What students major in is far more important in landing a well-paying job and moving up the ladder than where they earned their bachelor’s degrees. That’s why students in California’s state colleges and universities who excel in high-demand majors have nothing to worry about.

Walt Gardner, Los Angeles

The writer was a lecturer at the UCLA Graduate School of Education.


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