Richard Lowery, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin, has sued the Texas A&M University System over what he says are discriminatory hiring policies for faculty.
The class-action complaint was filed in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas by America First Legal (AFL) — a nonprofit group founded by Stephen Miller, a former senior advisor to President Donald Trump — on behalf of Lowery. It claims that the university, along with nearly every university in the United States of America, is violating federal law by openly discriminating against white and Asian male teaching candidates.
In July, the Office for Diversity at Texas A&M allegedly sent a memo stating that $2 million in funds would be allocated to the “Plus” version of the Accountability, Climate, Equity and Scholarship (ACES) Faculty Fellows Program and used to provide salaries and benefits to “new mid-career and senior tenure-track hires from underrepresented minority groups, that contribute to moving the structural composition of our faculty towards parity with that of the State of Texas.”
What exactly does that mean? The memo went on to define “underrepresented minority groups” as “African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, Native Americans, Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians.” In other words, the school allegedly set aside funds for candidates of favored racial groups, denying those very same funds to qualified candidates of disfavored racial groups.
“Texas A&M’s proclaimed goal of establishing a faculty whose racial composition attains ‘parity with that of the state of Texas’ seeks to achieve racial balancing, which is flatly illegal under Title VI and the binding precedent of the Supreme Court,” the lawsuit argues.
Also cited in the complaint is an August email exchange allegedly showing that Texas A&M unlawfully established “faculty-hiring lines that are reserved exclusively” for females or non-Asian minorities. Again, the lawsuit claims this violates Title VI and Title IX of the Civil Rights Act — which clearly prohibit universities that receive federal funding from discriminating on the basis of race or sex — as well as the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause.
Discrimination Celebrated by the Left
Of course, prima facie discrimination is not only justified but fervently celebrated by the woke left in 2022. According to its website, the Office for Diversity’s mission is to provide “leadership and support to the academic and administrative units as they embed diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in academic and institutional excellence.” Put another way, “embedding” this overtly racist ideology within the university system is the entire goal of the office.
“These discriminatory, illegal, and anti-meritocratic practices have been egged on by woke ideologues who populate the so-called diversity, equity, and inclusion offices at public and private universities throughout the United States. The existence of these offices is subverting meritocracy and encouraging wholesale violations of civil-rights laws throughout our nation’s university system,” the lawsuit argues. Some prominent legal experts agree with this assessment.
University of California at Berkeley Law Professor John Yoo says Lowery and AFL appear to have a strong case against Texas A&M:
The Supreme Court’s diversity rationale for the use of race in university admissions for students is a limited exception to the general rule that the Constitution prohibits government from using skin color in its decisions and policies. Here, Texas A&M is flatly using race in considering the hiring and compensation of faculty. It is flatly unconstitutional and the university should lose in court.
Potentially Landmark Case
In the past year, AFL has scored several legal victories over the Biden administration and what Miller describes as the “woke cult.” This potentially landmark case could have massive implications for DEI policies throughout American academia and the immoral, illogical idea that injustices from the past are somehow remedied by injustices in the present.
“Texas A&M is hiring — and excluding — professors solely due to the physical appearance of their skin or the ancestry of their family tree. This is vile and outrageous,” Miller said in a statement. “Our lawsuit will send tremors through our corrupt institutions of ‘higher learning’ making clear that racial discrimination will be met with righteous legal action in our courts of law.”
Lowery is asking the court to permanently enjoin Texas A&M from considering race or sex in the hiring, promotion, or compensation of its faculty and to appoint a court monitor to ensure all decisions relating to employment at the university are free from race or sex discrimination.