Journal of Educational Controversy


Friday, June 30, 2023

Article on Affirmative Action from the Journal of Educational Controversy


Long before the recent U.S. Supreme Court Decision, the Journal of Educational Controversy published an important article on affirmative action, entitled, “Anti-Affirmative Action and Historical Whitewashing: ToNever Apologize While Committing New Racial Sins,” by author Hoang Vu Tran shortly after his death.  Hoang V. Tran was a young assistant professor at Florida Atlantic University. He died from drowning in a lake while trying to save his friends from a strong current.  He left a three-year-old daughter and another child who was not yet born.  This article was probably the last manuscript he published, and we would like to highlight it for our readers in light of yesterday's Supreme Court decision.

The article appeared in our 2020 issue of the journal on the theme, "The Ethics of Memory: What Does It Mean to Apologize for Historical Wrongs."

Professor Hoang Tran’s Abstract of his article, “Anti-Affirmative Action and Historical Whitewashing:To Never Apologize While Committing New Racial Sins.”


Apologies, official or otherwise, for historical wrongs are important steps in the road towards reconciliation. More difficult are historical wrongs that have yet to be fully acknowledged. The reemergence of affirmative action in the public consciousness via the Supreme Court represents a striking example of the ways in which our collective consciousness has yet to fully account for our past educational sins: segregation and income inequality. This essay explores the multiple consequences to our historical memory when the anti-affirmative action narrative continues to dominate the public discourse on racism in education. I offer a renewed focus on ‘fenced out’ as the deterministic consideration of racism in education. In doing so, our historical memory and contemporary consciousness regains the potential to differentiate between admissions grievances, and ongoing racists practices such as de facto segregation and income inequality in education.

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