June 17, 2005

What Louisiana, California and Arkansas Have in Common

by PG

They are the "worst states" judged by the number of racial and ethnic classifications in their statutes, according to the Center for Equal Opportunity's survey of racial and ethnic classifications in state statutes last year. The FedSoc white paper and full report provide some interesting reading.

For example, I hadn't realized that "[t]he subject of preferential treatment in board and commission appointments has never been litigated at the federal level." Presumably we can count on CEO to correct that oversight as soon as they find a plaintiff with standing, in light of the pointed remarks about how "constitutionally suspect" or "vulnerable to a constitutional challenge" these practices are.

Thankfully CEO doesn't appear to have any plans to sue over states' attempting to improve the health care access of underserved populations, including minorities. The inclusion of such programs in the survey undercuts the general purpose of CEO's pointing out inappropriate racial classification, as putting health care centers in poor communities hardly discriminates against people of well-served populations; I've never been refused care at the clinic in Harlem, despite being neither African American nor Latino.

June 17, 2005 03:55 PM | TrackBack

I agree with you that the North Dakota statute addressing "underserved populations, including minorities" probably should not have been included. However, that appears to be the only example of a statute expressly citing "underserved populations"; the other cited health statutes all seem to be solely race- or ethnicity-based, rather than targeting a particular income level.

More generally, it seems politically questionable to include the health statutes at all, though, since it's so easy to paint opposition to that particular category of racial-classification statutes as hard-hearted.

Posted by: Tom T. at June 17, 2005 08:12 PM
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