Will Harvard have to apologize to Asian-Americans in 70 years?
by The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board, October 13, 2022
It’s a little late—70 years or so—but Stanford University formally apologized this week for discriminating against Jewish applicants in the mid-20th century. Like all such apologies for things done by people long since dead, it is a cost-free gesture. That points to a missed opportunity, because even a little self-reflection would reveal much in 21st-century academe that will one day look as repellent as the earlier bias against Jews.
The report from the advisory task force on the history of Jewish admissions and experience at Stanford makes for interesting reading. It states that—after extensive investigation—it found evidence “of actions taken to suppress the number of Jewish students admitted to Stanford during the early 1950s.” It also found that “members of the Stanford administration regularly misled parents” and others who “raised concerns about those actions.”
We’re glad to see a university come clean. The report also includes good ideas for campus life today—from not opening the school year on Jewish holy days to combatting anti-Semitism on campus—though we hope the vague language will lead to action and not another diversity training session. But the apology would be a great deal stronger if Stanford and other schools could acknowledge a culture on campus so hostile to Israel that Jews who won’t denounce the Jewish state can face harassment.
The most glaring absence in the report is any acknowledgment that the old discrimination against Jews has been replaced on many elite campuses by the new discrimination against Asian-Americans. Later this month the Supreme Court will hear cases about the use of race by Harvard and the University of North Carolina to limit the admission of otherwise qualified Asian-Americans.
And who is backing Harvard and North Carolina? None other than Stanford, which submitted an amicus brief supporting their race discrimination in the name of diversity. We look forward to Stanford’s apology for that. Based on precedent, we can expect it in 2092.