Animal World by Annie Davis

By Annie Davis

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Bollinger (2003), which reaffirmed the 1978 Regents of the University of California v. Bakke decision upholding the use of race-conscious admissions policies in higher education. The hope inspired by the Grutter decision was short-lived, however: opponents of affirmative action, led by African American businessman Ward Connerly, launched a campaign to overturn the policy through a series of state ballot initiatives. To date, such initiatives have succeeded in outlawing affirmative action in public institutions in California, Washington, Florida, and Michigan.

After winning the White House, Clinton defended affirmative action against right-wing opposition but also capitulated to conservatives by withdrawing his nomination of Lani Guinier, a strong advocate of civil rights, as Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. Clinton also proposed a comprehensive plan that would have guaranteed health care to all Americans—a plan that, if passed by Congress, would have benefited African Americans. But the bill failed. And in July 1996, during his reelection campaign, Clinton signed a welfare bill that included a GOP-authored provision abolishing the New Deal guarantee of welfare as a universal, federally mandated right.

The American Colonization Society (ACS), organized by prominent slaveholders in 1816, claimed its objective was to encourage gradual abolition by sending free African Americans to Africa. It became the leading American antislavery organization of the 1820s and established Liberia as a black colony in West Africa. For a time black leaders, facing increasing oppression in the United States, agreed with this strategy. Best represented by black sea captain Paul Cuffe, they cooperated with the ACS during the 1810s, hoping that a homeland beyond America’s borders would undermine slavery there and throughout the Atlantic World.

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