A new federal lawsuit accuses the United States Military Academy at West Point of improperly considering applicants’ race and ethnicity when making admissions decisions.
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in the Southern District of New York by Students for Fair Admissions, the same group that successfully challenged affirmative action in higher education admissions in a landmark Supreme Court case that struck down the practice in June. .
In the lawsuit, Students for Fair Admissions claims that West Point has benchmarks for how many black, Hispanic and Asian cadets the institution should admit to each class.
The lawsuit also accuses the military academy of discriminating on the basis of race and violating the equal protection principle of the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution.
“Instead of admitting future cadets based on objective metrics and leadership potential, West Point focuses on race,” the complaint reads.
“In fact, it openly publishes its racial composition ‘goals,’ and its admissions director boasts that race is entirely determinative for hundreds, if not thousands, of applicants.”
The group said West Point “has no justification for using race-based admissions.”
A new federal lawsuit accuses the United States Military Academy at West Point of improperly considering the race and ethnicity of applicants.AP
“Such admissions are unconstitutional for all other public institutions of higher education,” the lawsuit contends, citing Students for Fair Admissions’ blockbuster summer Supreme Court case against Harvard University and the University of North Carolina.
The June 2022 ruling did not cover West Point or other US military academies, but jurists could use it as precedent.
“Because West Point discriminates on the basis of race, its admissions policy must be declared unlawful and prohibited,” the lawsuit demands, also asking for a preliminary injunction prohibiting the military academy from considering or knowing an applicant’s race when make admission decisions.
In the lawsuit, Students for Fair Admissions claims that West Point has benchmarks for how many black, Hispanic and Asian cadets the institution should admit to each class. Matthew McDermott
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“Over the years, courts have been cognizant of the military’s unique role in the life of our nation and the distinctive considerations that come with it. However, no level of deference justifies these polarizing and distasteful racial rankings and preferences in admissions to West Point or any of our service academies,” SFFA President Edward Blum said in a statement.
“Because the recent opinion of the United States Supreme Court in the SFFA cases expressly prohibits all institutions of higher education from using race in admissions decisions, it must follow that the United States military institutions of higher education also They must end their race-based policies,” he added.
West Point touts minority enrollment in its Class of 2027 at about 38%, including about 10% Black, 11% Hispanic, 14% Asian American and 1% Native American.
The lawsuit names the Department of Defense, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and other military and West Point officials as defendants.
The academy said in a statement that it “does not comment on ongoing investigations to protect the integrity of its outcome for all parties involved.”