When Justice Sandra Day O’Connor gave affirmative action a 25-year reprieve, it seemed like more than enough time. Surely after another quarter-century of progress in racial relations, “the use of racial preferences,” as Justice O’Connor wrote, “will no longer be necessary.”
That was 11 years ago. Given the loathsome racism exposed in the past few days, it’s harder to be sanguine about that quarter-century. First it was Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, whose lawbreaking was being celebrated by Republican senators Rand Paul of Kentucky and Dean Heller of Nevada, until Mr. Bundy began extolling the virtues of slavery for African Americans.
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