Historic Views on Government – Allen

Honest opinion about government from William B. Allen:

This is a way of proceeding in our country which leads to disaster…. [P]eople are in the habit of thinking in terms of race, or gender–anything except of being an American. Until we learn once again to use the language of American freedom in an appropriate way that embraces all of us, we're going to continue to harm this country.
   C-SPAN, May 23, 1992

It is misleading to call affirmative action reverse discrimination, as we often do. There is no such thing, any more than the opposite of injustice, for example, is reverse injustice.

James Madison thought that the most important test of American freedom would be the ability of our political system to guarantee the rights of minorities without exceptional provisions for their protection. Affirmative action is incompatible with that constitutional design. Whoever calls for affirmative action declares at the same time that that constitutional design has failed and that we can no longer live with our Constitution.
   American Enterprise Institute, May 21, 1985

A black political scientist, William Allen is a former director of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights who emphasizes the importance of avoiding race-consciousness and its balkanizing force.

Quotation and short bio from The Quotable Conservative: The Giants of Conservatism on Liberty, Freedom, Individual Responsibility, and Traditional Values. Rod L. Evans and Irwin M. Berent, editors. Holbrook, Mass.: Adams Publishing, 1996.

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