“The Israeli model of affirmative action does achieve widespread diversity because it considers several aspects of disadvantage. In addition to increasing geographic diversity, the program increases the number of students who are new immigrants and who come from poorer families and poorer neighborhoods.

But it achieved these goals at the price of ethnic diversity. Only half of all those students admitted under the program are ethnic minorities, that is, Jews of Asian or African origin and Arabs, the groups at the bottom of Israel’s social stratification system. If a race-based affirmative action policy had been implemented instead of this policy, the level of ethnic diversity would have been twice as high. Such a policy would also expand the level of socioeconomic and geographic diversity at the Israeli bastions of privilege, but not as much as the class-based policy did.

With these results in mind, I assessed how the diversity dividends of American race-conscious admissions programs measured up, using data from the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study, which follows students for six years, starting in their freshman year. The results demonstrate that class-based programs could enlarge the socioeconomic and geographic diversity at the 115 institutions I examined. Yet, as in Israel, the student bodies of elite American colleges would be substantially less racially and ethnically diverse than they are now. Under socioeconomic affirmative action, the share of minority students will decline by nearly a third. The number of African-American students could decline by up to 50 percent, and Hispanics by about 25 percent. At the same time, the share of whites and Asians will rise.”

Here. Sometimes the mentally disadvantaged aren’t all that financially disadvantaged.

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