Anti-Affirmative Action Group Targets Naval Academy’s Race-Based Admissions Policies

Students for Fair Admissions accused the academy of using “race is determinative for some applicants.”

An anti-affirmative action organization has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Naval Academy for considering race as a factor in admissions, CNN reports. 

Students for Fair Admissions previously sued Harvard University and the University of North Carolina in a case that reached the Supreme Court. The high court’s conservative majority ruled that race-based college admissions were unconstitutional.

The group’s new 28-page federal lawsuit states that the academy “has no justification for using race-based admissions.”

According to the lawsuit, the academy “openly acknowledges that race is determinative for some applicants. Because the Academy provides a racial ‘benefit’ to some applicants but not to others,’ it ‘necessarily advantages the former group at the expense of the latter.’”

Supreme Court Ends Affirmative Action in Education In Landmark Ruling

Ed Blum, president of SFFA, said that the Supreme Court's decision to strike down affirmative action in June proves that the Naval Academy’s admissions process was illegal.

“Over the past few decades, the Naval Academy has strayed from its former colorblind, merit-based admissions policies and now focuses on race and ethnicity – factors that do not contribute to the qualifications of applicants,” Blum said in a statement, according to USA Today.

The Supreme Court’s majority carved out an exception for military service academies in banning affirmative action in college admissions. Chief Justice John Roberts argued that the academies were not parties in the case and that there were “potentially distinct interests” involved, CBS News reported.

Former military leaders asked the court to include an exception for the academies. They said a diverse officer corps was needed because they would command diverse troops. However, some legal experts argue that creating a carveout is inconsistent with the court’s ruling.

The lawsuit is the second complaint that Students for Fair Admissions has filed against military institutions. In September, the group filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, claiming that the school considered race in its admission policies  and used “racial balancing” to meet quotas “for the portion of African American, Hispanic, and Asian students that make up each incoming class.”

"West Point has no justification for using race-based admissions," the complaint read. "Those admissions are unconstitutional for all other public institutions of higher education. The Academy is not exempt from the Constitution."

Latest News

Subscribe for BET Updates

Provide your email address to receive our newsletter.

By clicking Subscribe, you confirm that you have read and agree to our Terms of Use and acknowledge our Privacy Policy. You also agree to receive marketing communications, updates, special offers (including partner offers) and other information from BET and the Paramount family of companies. You understand that you can unsubscribe at any time.