Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Merit Isn’t What It Used to Be at Annapolis

A Naval Academy professor and former admissions official has blown the whistle on the Navy’s diversity admissions program. He contends there is one set of academic standards for white applicants and another one for minorities. He says,“First of all, we’re dumbing down the Naval Academy. . . Second of all, we’re dumbing down the officer corps.” And he’s got some data on his side: “The share of plebes who scored less than 600 on the SAT math test was 22 percent this year, up from 12 percent in the Class of 2008. The number of freshmen coming from the academy’s one-year preparatory program, designed for remedial studies, was 244 this year, the highest figure in at least 10 years.”

Some careful non-denial denials by the Navy raise further suspicions. When the Navy’s defenders say they still think the admissions process would pass “constitutional muster,” that is diversity-speak for “We do it, but not so blatantly that we couldn’t defend ourselves in court.”

Truth be told, the constitutional standard is very “weak.” Public schools can employ race preferences so long as they hide it in a fog of flowery language. They “look at the whole student.” Race and ethnicity are only “one of many factors.” So I have no doubt the Navy employs lawyers smart enough to keep the Academy out of legal peril. But the professor’s observations also ring true and suggest that even in the Navel Academy “merit” isn’t what it used to be — and isn’t the same for all the midshipmen.



Join the discussion…

Are you a subscriber? Log in to comment »

Not a subscriber? Join the discussion today, subscribe to Commentary »





Pin It on Pinterest

Shares
Share This

Share This

Share this post with your friends!

Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor to our site, you are allowed 8 free articles this month.
This is your first of 8 free articles.

If you are already a digital subscriber, log in here »

Print subscriber? For free access to the website and iPad, register here »

To subscribe, click here to see our subscription offers »

Please note this is an advertisement skip this ad
Clearly, you have a passion for ideas.
Subscribe today for unlimited digital access to the publication that shapes the minds of the people who shape our world.
Get for just
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
YOU HAVE READ OF 8 FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
FOR JUST
Welcome to Commentary Magazine.
We hope you enjoy your visit.
As a visitor, you are allowed 8 free articles.
This is your first article.
You have read of 8 free articles this month.
YOU HAVE READ 8 OF 8
FREE ARTICLES THIS MONTH.
for full access to
CommentaryMagazine.com
INCLUDES FULL ACCESS TO:
Digital subscriber?
Print subscriber? Get free access »
Call to subscribe: 1-800-829-6270
You can also subscribe
on your computer at
CommentaryMagazine.com.
LOG IN WITH YOUR
COMMENTARY MAGAZINE ID
Don't have a CommentaryMagazine.com log in?
CREATE A COMMENTARY
LOG IN ID
Enter you email address and password below. A confirmation email will be sent to the email address that you provide.