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June 18, 2003

Affirmative Action in Medical School AdmissionsAffirmative Action in Medical School Admissions

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie, MD, PhD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2003;289(23):3084. doi:10.1001/jama.289.23.3084-a

To the Editor: I agree with Dr Cohen1 that the practice of discrimination is wrong and ought not continue. Affirmative action is thus similarly wrong. The favoring of a small number of races of necessity entails discrimination against all others. If past discrimination was wrong (and it was), then current discrimination is wrong and no other conclusion is possible. Race-based favoritism directly contravenes the American principle of equality. The 14th amendment guarantees citizens equal protection of the law: for the medical schools, equal protection means that all students of equal ability have an equal chance of admission. Nothing else is fair or right.

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