NOTE: My statements are not necessarily my opinions. I often post point-counterpoint essays in which I strongly take one side of an issue and later counter that with antithetical views. This intellectual exercise helps me see the merit in opposing opinions and augments my creativity.

Recommended article to read before this one: If You Talk Honestly About Race by Dr. Thomas Sowell

Big 10 school awarding sham college degrees

“In a room where people unanimously maintain a conspiracy of silence, one word of truth sounds like a pistol shot.”
Nobel Laureate Czesław Miłosz

After all charges were dropped against the Duke University students accused of raping the black exotic dancer, I thought of various things our society does that perpetuate the corrosive aspects of discrimination and racial bias. Ironically, in an attempt to help black people, societal do-gooders have implemented affirmative action programs that perpetuate racial divisiveness and breed resentment as well as skepticism of minority accomplishments.

As an undergraduate at Michigan State University, I witnessed MSU do something in the name of helping black students that should incense anyone who cares about justice and academic integrity. I wrote about this topic years ago on my www.ERbook.net site. Here’s an excerpt:

I worked for MSU tutoring primarily minority students [all of whom were black]. In the course of my tutoring job, I discovered that MSU had certain class sections that were hidden from other students—and hence inaccessible—in the course enrollment book. Certain sections were reserved for athletes, and certain sections were reserved for qualifying minority students. Students in those classes were guaranteed a passing grade if they merely showed up for the exam and signed their name. (Perhaps the professors in those classes took to heart the quip by Woody Allen, “Eighty percent of success is showing up.”) If the students attempted to answer any of the questions, they were given a B, and if they got any question correct (even if it was by random chance), they were awarded an A.

That ticked me off! I had to work my butt off to succeed, and here were people being given a free ride through life just because of their skin color or because they could catch a football. However, it is important to note that not all minorities and athletes were handed a degree on a silver platter after four years of pretending to be a student; some of them took regular classes and worked just as hard as anyone else. Nevertheless, the fact that any student could be awarded college credit in such a fraudulent manner is alarming.

Why it happened is another matter. My guess is that the university bowed to political pressure to graduate more minorities—and we all know that sports teams can be big money-makers for colleges, so there is an obvious incentive to give dumb jocks a helping hand.

It is no secret that affirmative action exists, but I was shocked by the degree to which it is sometimes so blatantly offensive. This isn't just offensive to hard-working non-minorities who are displaced by minorities given an unfair boost, it is also a slap in the face to hard-working minorities who achieve success on their own. In fact, those latter people should be particularly incensed, because the existence of these scandals undermines public confidence in the legitimacy of their achievements.

The NFL is reportedly disappointed by the percentage of prospects who can't read their diplomas. Based on what I discovered at MSU, I am not surprised.

People who criticize affirmative action risk being labeled as prejudiced. Research has shown that all humans tend to possess a reflexive distrust of others who are not like them. Basically, xenophobia seems to be part of our genetic heritage. However, I think that this innate tendency can be overcome by one's life experiences. For example, in the ER I noticed that black patients, especially older ones, tended to like me more than white patients. I am not sure why that was true. Perhaps it is because I treated them with respect and concern, which they may not have been used to getting. In any case, it is natural to like people who like you.

Furthermore, when I meet a black person who is intelligent and contributes to society instead of having his hand out, I like that person even more than I would someone with equal attributes who is white, with that additional increment of affinity stemming from an acknowledgement that racism may have given that person more problems to overcome; hence, that person deserves extra credit for surmounting those difficulties.* Based on that, if I harbor any prejudice as a white person, it seems that any bias I have is a slight bias against white people. Consequently, if I speak out against affirmative action, it is not a manifestation of prejudice. I think affirmative action, although well-intended, hurts everyone in one way or another.

* Part of the cultural fabric of America is to admire and respect people who overcome adversity and succeed. Considering the head start they were given, Bill Gates's children will need to do great things to earn esteem, while people who went from rags to riches, or anything close to it, are generally held in higher regard.

I think that there are better ways to achieve diversity. For example, Joe Klein wrote an interesting article in the December 18, 2006 issue of Time magazine entitled “There's More Than One Way to Diversity.” After reading him for years, I believe that his opinions tend toward the left side of the political spectrum. If Joe Klein criticizes affirmative action, then there is probably something fundamentally wrong with it. I think that Mr. Klein and others would be even more critical of it if they knew of some of the most heinous things done in the name of affirmative action, such as the sham college degrees awarded to some black students by Michigan State University.

Predictably, the mainstream media suppresses any mention of this academic scam. I was interviewed for an hour by a radio station that asked me to discuss the presidential candidates before the 2008 election. When I mentioned the MSU scam, the host rushed in to say, “We don't want anyone to think we're racist” and quickly moved to another topic.

Race is now such a radioactive topic that even tangential references to it often precipitate unwarranted accusations of prejudice and shrill cries from the thought police. The best our leaders and professors have done is to make race such a sensitive topic that every cultured person now carefully engages his dorsolateral prefrontal cortex before opening his mouth on anything remotely connected to race.

Is there a better way? Absolutely yes! I discovered a way to rapidly eradicate racism in everyone except sociopaths (learn how to spot a sociopath), which I will present in an upcoming free book. With racism extinguished to the maximal possible extent, we can be freer to discuss racial topics, such as this one.

UPDATE: I recently spoke with a physician's wife during a four-hour conversation that covered everything from raising chickens to children, religion, politics, abortion, nutrition, weight loss, and more. She said something that shocked me: when her husband was a med student at the University of Chicago School of Medicine, he befriended black medical students after learning the school gave them the tests for the preceding four years before the current exam, which would be comprised of questions taken from tests given the past four years!

One of my friends said that black medical students at Harvard were permitted to retake tests. Were their patients also given nine lives?

Years ago, when I first wrote of the academic scam at MSU, I couldn't believe that such nonsense went on in medical schools, whose graduates can obviously kill and maim people if they don't know what they are doing. When medical school professors and administrators are willing to sacrifice patients to achieve their affirmative action goals, it is clear that academic affirmative action has gone way too far.

UPDATE #2: In The College Diploma Fraud, Professor Robert Weissberg presented evidence that this racial academic fraud is pervasive and broader in scope than I imagined. One disagreement: he suggests that black graduates with what he accurately terms “concocted diplomas” are “the real losers in this deception.” No doubt they sometimes are, but businesses and organizations kowtowing to pressures to diversify hire many of these sham graduates, who give the rest of us headaches as we struggle to deal with their incompetence and often truculence that stems from an awareness that their race effectively makes them immune to firing. The government and universities provide refuges for these fake grads with safety nets that are almost impossible to fall through. Of course, with the poster boy for academic (and other) fraud sitting in the White House, don't expect the feds to address this problem.

Dr. Weissberg, author of Bad Students, Not Bad Schools, wrote that universities have concocted ways to “counterfeit genuine accomplishment,” which arguably does us more harm than what crooks do when they print their own money. Unlike criminals, fraudulent graduates get a helping hand from taxpayer-funded universities who are complicit in this deception. Our politicians, who are paid to fight fraud, are either asleep at the wheel or turning a blind eye to this problem. It's no longer a secret, so it is high time they put a stop to it—but they won't.

UPDATE #3: Sharon Collins Diana, one of my brilliant friends, posted the following on Facebook, which is relevant to this issue:

“I had an interesting conversation with my ophthalmologist/retina specialist last week. He saw that I was reading Ayn Rand's biography and he told me he was reading Atlas Shrugged for the first time. A discussion about Ayn Rand led us to a conversation about politics in general and the practice of medicine in particular. I had commented that I believe schools to be indoctrination centers rather than learning centers. He related a story to me of how he had hired an ophthalmologist, a Harvard med school grad AND a minority, to work at his practice. He told me that the guy was lazy and arrogant, left most of the work for the techs to do, lounged around most of the day with his feet up and was just a general slob. After one year, the guy got an offer from UT Medical Center in Galveston as Chief of Ophthalmology making $650,000 a year. My doctor said that he was only marginally qualified to practice medicine, but it's nearly impossible to flunk out of Harvard AND he's a minority. Stories like this leave me shaking my head.”

UPDATE #4: The College Diploma Fraud article included several interesting comments. Here's an excerpt from what a medical school professor wrote:

“I watched two hopelessly unprepared black students receive PhD degrees for work they neither fully understood nor could defend. [...] Our MD program is picking students in high school and giving them unlimited assistance to not only make it through undergraduate programs, but [help them pass med school and emerge with zero debt; the average MD graduates with $160,000 of debt]. I am starting to see these unqualified minority doctors turn up in the wards. Their inabilities are further tolerated and enabled. Adverse patient reactions from their errors are covered up. This is the future of American medicine—dwindling competence and dangerous care. I mourn for the system we all worked so hard to create.”

UPDATE #5: Speaking of dangerous care . . . A Facebook friend sent the following to me:

“A minority student was caught forging her clinical hours in my nurse practitioner (NP) program. Her preceptor, a minority as well, called her out on it and reported her to the faculty. He told me personally that he was never handed anything on a silver platter and she wasn't going to be handed anything either; she was going to have to earn it. Turns out she lied about 70–100 clinic hours and was stamping a MD's name on her logs and using white-out on them as well. Yes she is still in the program; she should be OUT according to the academic honesty policy but she's not. She has to be monitored more closely now but she is still allowed to progress.

The rest of us are in a state of moral distress as is the preceptor that called her out on her behavior. We know that even if she passes the Boards she is NOT qualified clinically or morally to practice as an NP. This behavior HAS GOT TO STOP!

If you use this info please don't use my name because I fear retribution if this information gets out.”

She asked that I withhold her school's name until after she graduates because she got in trouble with the faculty for discussing a similar situation in a private Facebook message.

UPDATE #6: There are no stupid questions . . .

When asked what her college major was at the press conference announcing her 2004 presidential campaign, former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun (D-IL) was stumped and was quoted as saying, “I hate to guess. I think — I mean, I'm going to guess it was political science, but I'm not sure. It might have been history. I'll check. I hadn't thought of that one.”

Forgetting your college major is like forgetting whether you're a virgin. How could anyone forget such a monumental thing?

Moseley-Braun is notorious for comparing George Will to a Ku Klux Klansman (after he wrote a column reviewing the numerous allegations of corruption against her) and then overreacting by saying “I think because he couldn't say nigger, he said corrupt.

Moseley-Braun is obviously skilled at playing the race card. She is also a lawyer, former prosecutor, and former United States Ambassador to New Zealand. How could such a person not know her college major? It is difficult to believe that at least a few neurons in her brain couldn't recall her college major. Since she does not appear to be that imbecilic, what might explain her “I'm going to guess . . . I'm not sure. It might have been history. I'll check. I hadn't thought of that one” statement? I wouldn't be surprised if she enrolled in affirmative action class sections similar to the ones described above in which studying is optional.

UPDATE # 7: UNC academic fraud scandal

UNC report finds 18 years of academic fraud to keep athletes playing

Report: Former UNC football player suing school for sham classes

CNN analysis: Some college athletes play like adults, read like 5th-graders

My relevant articles:

Affirmative action for rich white people

Why your next doctor may be cognitively impaired

Did Barack Obama truly earn his college degrees?

Presents more evidence of minorities getting more than a helping hand from universities. Incidentally, when Donald Trump broached the subject of Obama's college records, he was called racist, which is preposterous. The backgrounds of presidential candidates are scrutinized in meticulous detail, but Obama fans have insulated him from this routine investigation by recklessly alleging racism. Since affirmative action is real and was strongly utilized during Obama's college years, wondering whether Obama benefited from it is reasonable, not racist. Curiosity over this issue is amplified considering what we know about Obama's undergraduate years, which suggests he was a lackluster student more interested in getting high than studying. Thus, it is natural to wonder how such a third-rate student was accepted into Harvard Law School, which routinely rejects geniuses with stellar academic records. The fact that Obama so far has refused to disclose his academic records lends credence to the belief that he is hiding something.

The preposterous myth of Tea Party racism

Discusses the roots of racism and gives a sneak peek of how to cure it.
The views expressed on this page may or may not reflect my current opinions, nor do they necessarily represent my past ones. After reading a slice of what I wrote in my various websites and books, you may conclude that I am a liberal Democrat or a conservative Republican. Wrong; there is a better alternative. Just as the primary benefit from debate classes results when students present and defend opinions contrary to their own, I use a similar strategy as a creative writing tool to expand my brainpower—and yours. Mystified? Stay tuned for an explanation. PS: The wheels in your head are already turning a bit faster, aren't they?

“The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Reference: Imagining dialogue can boost critical thinking: Excerpt: “Examining an issue as a debate or dialogue between two sides helps people apply deeper, more sophisticated reasoning …”

Comments (2)

post commentPost a comment or subscribe to my blog

Comment #161 by Carl • Website: carllindsay080_at_nospam_gmail_dot_com
April 18 2011 01:08:15 PM

Fake degrees

This is really an informational blog. I was collecting information online about the fake degree providing firms and I got your blog. This is very helpful for me. Thanks.

REPLY FROM KEVIN PEZZI: You're welcome! I am surprised that this topic hasn't gained more traction. Congress has found time to hold hearings on drug use in professional sports, yet they haven't found time to investigate colleges that knowingly award sham degrees?
Does. Not. Compute.

This problem not only harms the economy, but it can kill patients and waste healthcare dollars as hospitals pay to cover the mistakes of incompetent practitioners.

Comment #111 by Stan Pierce
January 28 2011 03:35:26 PM

Right on

What you said is, of course, all true ... sad, but accurate. Affirmative action and its abuses have been ongoing from the beginning, with the Ivy League schools at the forefront.

post commentPost a comment or subscribe to my blog