Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Will Whites Be Stereotyped as Corrupt Because of Felicity Huffman?

In "Will Whites Be Stereotyped as Corrupt Because of Felicity Huffman?" in the Diverse Issues of Higher Education, Frank Wu (UC Hastings),  considers the unlikelihood of racial stereotyping in the recent college admissions scandal.  He notes, "A conspiracy among white Americans is not attributed to a character flaw shared within a community. The same generosity is not practiced with others who face collective blame."

Wu provides the examples of Chinese foreign nationals in doing "more or less what the Hollywood ring has admitted to doing on a vast scale:"

Unlike with Whites who have committed the same crime, the Asians are said to have done what they did because of their background. It is as if to say, well, what can you expect; that’s how those people are. Imagine if a group of African-American and Latino elders put together a systematic means to rip off respected institutions — except, oh, people regularly speculate about so-called “welfare queens.”


The other disparity this scandal confirms is in access to services from test preparation to career counseling and the social network that knows or claims to know how to game the system. The outright cheating, including taking advantage of legitimate disability accommodation rules for illegitimate benefit, cannot be condoned of course. But perhaps it is less the obvious wrongdoing than the subtle norms in the background that are the real problem.


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