Short takes — “excessive whiteness,” Myles Leonard, and Vanita Gupta

*Did you know that law schools are now being rated according to their “whiteness”? The rating system determines a school’s “excess whiteness” by comparing the degree to which a law school’s student body is more white than the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) applicant pools and state population. Credentials to study law don’t factor in, of course.

“The Whitest Law School Report” found Case Western Reserve University’s law school to be less white than approximately three-quarters of the other law schools in the study. The school’s “co-deans” sent an email to students, staff, and faculty bragging about Case Western’s comparative non-whiteness.

They were quick to point out, however, that the “whiteness study” result doesn’t mean the school should be satisfied with the diversity of its student body or that “we have an equitable number of students who identify as Black, Native American, Latinx, Asian American, Pacific Islander, or other under-represented groups.”

The co-deans also noted that “lack of diversity in the applicant pool continues to be a problem.” In other words, there aren’t enough non-whites interested in attending the school to allow the admission of even minimally qualified minorities in numbers deemed “equitable” by the race mongers.

The problem isn’t lack of equity. The problem is the strange way that word is being used these days.

*Myles Leonard is a basketball player for the Miami Heat. He has been suspended by the team for using an anti-Semitic slur — “kike” — while playing a video game that was live streamed. Leonard is injured and can’t play for the Heat anyway, but the suspension will prevent him from being around the team and will lead to a monetary penalty.

As a Jew, I find Leonard’s language mildly offensive. But, in the scheme of things, why should I care what some random basketball player said? NBA players aren’t public officials.

As an American, I’m more offended that someone is being punished for his choice of words. American Jews don’t need the NBA to protect them from ugly language. Chinese Muslims, by contrast, could do with some support from the NBA. But the league doesn’t care about them, at least not enough to offend the Red Chinese.

Leonard has apologized profusely for what he said. The Miami Heat should lighten up.

*Speaking of apologizing, Vanita Gupta, who aspires to be a very high-ranking public official, apologized yesterday for her nasty tweets about U.S. Senators. Gupta doesn’t want to be nixed by the Senate for such tweets the way Neera Tanden was.

But Gupta’s apology was marred by her attempt to blame Twitter. She said:

To be honest with you, I do think that Twitter has been incredibly polarizing. I’ve played a role in it. It does reward snark and polarization.

Maybe. But the “Twitter made me do it” defense is lame. Even if Twitter brings out the worst in people, Gupta is still responsible for her “worst.”

Moreover, Gupta’s non-Twitter rants in her capacity as head of the Leadership Council on Human and Civil Rights are also snarky and polarizing. It’s true that they don’t go after U.S. Senators directly, only the Republican nominees they voted to confirm. However, Senators shouldn’t confine their distaste for vicious attacks on political opponents to attacks that single them out.

Snarky is snarky and viciously partisan is viciously partisan regardless of the target’s identity or station in life.

Gupta graciously pledged to stop attacking people on Twitter if confirmed. But if confirmed she won’t need Twitter to go after her political opponents. She will have the power of the U.S. government behind her.

That’s scary.