Beyond the Bricks
by Alyssa Jackson | published Apr. 29th, 2014
Supreme Court Looks At Affirmative Action Programs
On April 22 the Supreme Court upheld the state right to ban racial preference when admitting students to college, by a vote of 6-2 according to USA Today. Affirmative action allows for those who often suffer from discrimination, such as African Americans, Native Americans and women, to be favored or treated fairly. For example, many universities have affirmative action programs that require they admit a certain number of female students. The decision in the court case left the right to put affirmative action programs in place up to each individual state.
The court case came from Michigan, where a voter-approved initiative banning affirmative action was being debated heavily. In the United States there are seven states with affirmative action bans: California, Florida, Washington, Nebraska, Oklahoma and New Hampshire. Supporters of Affirmative Action feel as though this will contribute to a decrease in minority enrollment at college universities, a trend that is already occurring in the states that have banned affirmative action. “The president has said that while he opposes quotas and thinks an emphasis on universal and not race-specific programs is good policy, considering race, along with other factors, can be appropriate in certain circumstances," Press Secretary Jay Carney commented according to USA Today.
Solar Plant Expected to Create Jobs in Buffalo
According to the Democrat and Chronicle, a new manufacturing plant will open in Buffalo and create more than 1,000 jobs for the area. Solar Frontier K.K., a solar module manufacturer from Japan, will be researching with the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering. The partnership could potentially generate nearly $700 million in investments.
Solar Frontier expects that the jobs will deal with research, development, manufacturing while a majority of the jobs consist of contractors and suppliers. "Collaboration would provide Solar Frontier the opportunity for significant growth, by establishing overseas production bases and advancing our company as a global leader in solar energy," Solar Frontier President Hiroto Tamai said in a news release, according to the Democrat and Chronicle.
Sudan Massacre Leaves UN Troubled
The United Nations is considering using sanctions against Sudan due to a massacre that occurred in Bentiu, the capital, on April 15. South Sudan has been unstable due to fighting between rebel forces and the current government since December of this year, according to Associated Press. The constant violence and fear has forced thousands of residents to leave their homes and seek refuge. With fewer people in the community attending to crops, the country now faces a famine as well. Neither the government nor the rebel troops have appeared sincere in their peace talks; many members of the United Nations are at a loss of what to do next. The United Nations operates multiple bases in South Sudan, where over 22,500 refugees have sought shelter, jumping from 8,000 when the killings started, the Associated Press resports.
"We have also to face the fact that maybe we can't cooperate with this government anymore," said Gerard Araud, France’s U.N. ambassador, according to Associated Press. "Because atrocities are committed by both sides. So I do think we have to have some soul-searching about what should the [United Nations] do." President Barack Obama has already warned that the United States may also sanction Sudan by freezing assets, among other possible punishments.