White Boy Affirmative Action

William B. Turner
3 min readJul 16, 2019
White Boy Affirmative Action Poster Child

The standard criticism of people who benefit from affirmative action, as Justice Clarence Thomas often whines, is that it brands its alleged beneficiaries as less than fully qualified.

Of course, Thomas is definitely a beneficiary of affirmative action. He only got his seat on the Supreme Court because he was a politically compliant African American when Justice Thurgood Marshall decided to retire while a Republican was president of the United States. Republicans, always eager to maintain the facade that their Party stands for something other than “white supremacy,” felt compelled to replace the first African American ever to sit on the Supreme Court with another African American, so they looked around, overlooked any number of very well qualified African Americans because smart African Americans are Democrats, and plucked Thomas from the perch he had ascended to as a token black Republican — affirmative action.

Even as they are the people who are the most likely to denounce the practice, the Republican Party is really the Affirmative Action party. The only difference is that, for Republicans, affirmative action mostly benefits white men.

Donald Trump is the epitome of white boy affirmative action. He is entirely unqualified to serve as president and has performed as badly in the job as any thinking person could have predicted he would, but Republicans, leaders and rank and file, like him because he is a white boy. That’s all that matters for them. That he is an overtly racist white boy is just icing on the cake.

This observation holds for all “conservatives” in the United States. We have lately been treated to snort of derision and a raft of amusing tweets in response to the new book by late Speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican Paul Ryan. Most people have joked about his apparent lack of a spine as a way to disparage his absence of courage in immediately legitimizing Trump as president after having criticized him as a candidate, among other failings:

William B. Turner

Uppity gay, Buddhist, author, historian.