Title

Affirmative Action Plans in the 1990s: A Double Edged Sword

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

6-1-1992

Department

Management and International Business

Abstract

Since the mid-1980s, affirmative action plans (AAPs) have come under ever increasing criticism. Many detractors argue that AAPs serve no purpose other than to veil thinly reverse discrimination against whites. In the twenty-five years since the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, critics contend that substantial progress has been made in the area of equal opportunities for women and minorities and that affirmative action plans now have outlived their usefulness. Additionally, it is argued that affirmative action has created an employment spoils system in which people who actually never have experienced discrimination are reaping benefits at the expense of white males.1 This shift in public opinion was sufficiently strong in 1985 to encourage then Attorney General Edwin Meese to call for an amended Executive Order which would eliminate the "quota system," referring to AAps.2 President Reagan, however, did not amend the Executive Order and affirmative action remained throughout his administration and into the next.

Publication Title

Public Personnel Management

Volume

21

Issue

2

First Page

261

Last Page

272