“The student must be treated based on his or her experiences as an individual — not on the basis of race,” Roberts wrote. “Many universities have for too long done just the opposite. And in doing so, they have concluded, wrongly, that the touchstone of an individual’s identity is not challenges bested, skills built, or lessons learned but the color of their skin. Our constitutional history does not tolerate that choice.”
Roberts said the admissions programs at Harvard and UNC “lack sufficiently focused and measurable objectives warranting the use of race, unavoidably employ race in a negative manner, involve racial stereotyping, and lack meaningful end points.”
But he added that “nothing in this opinion should be construed as prohibiting universities from considering an applicant’s discussion of how race affected his or her life, be it through discrimination, inspiration, or otherwise.”
In dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor said: “Equal educational opportunity is a prerequisite to achieving racial equality in our Nation.”
“Today, this Court stands in the way and rolls back decades of precedent and momentous progress. It holds that race can no longer be used in a limited way in college admissions to achieve such critical benefits. In so holding, the Court cements a superficial rule of colorblindness as a constitutional principle in an endemically segregated society where race has always mattered and continues to matter.”…..
Another High Court case in 2025 on race based college admissions…..
In 2016, in its last major case on affirmative action in higher education, the Supreme Court upheld an aspect of an idiosyncratic admissions program at the University of Texas at Austin. In the process, it reaffirmed the distinction the court had drawn in earlier cases: that numerical quotas were unlawful but that taking account of race as one factor among many to achieve educational diversity was permissible…..
One justice ain’t happy with the majority ruling in this case…..
From Justice Brown….
The majority and concurring opin- ions rehearse this Court’s idealistic vision of racial equality, from Brown forward, with appropriate lament for past in- discretions. See, e.g., ante, at 11. But the race-linked gaps that the law (aided by this Court) previously founded and fostered–which indisputably define our present reality-
are strangely absent and do not seem to matter. With let-them-eat-cake obliviousness, today, the majority pulls the ripcord and announces “colorblindness for all” by legal fiat. But deeming race irrelevant in law does not make it so in life. And having so detached itself from this country’s actual past and present experiences, the Court has now been lured into interfering with the crucial work that UNC and other institutions of higher learning are do-
ing to solve America’s real-world problems. No one benefits from ignorance….