The NBA Hall of Famer felt compelled to act strongly in support of future black students attending his alma mater, Auburn University, after learning of the decision, according to a report by AL.com . Barkley announced his choice to leave a $5 million bequest to Auburn in his will during a statement Friday.
I am going to change it so that it only applies to scholarships for black students, he declared. This is how I try to make sure Auburn maintains its diversity.
Barkley expressed his love for Auburn and initially intended to use the funds to support disadvantaged students. However, he made the decision to amend his will alone in support of black students after receiving numerous calls in the wake of the recent decision. He stressed that giving blacks a place at Auburn is the right thing to do and a sign of his dedication to fostering diversity at the school.
Barring Harvard University and the University of North Carolina (UNC) from using racial bias in their application acceptance process, the Supreme Court issued a landmark decision Friday.
In the majority opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts declared that any benefits awarded to a student who has overcome racial discrimination should be determined by their unique experiences, bravery, and tenacity rather than their race. In contrast to emphasizing students’ personal development, skills and achievements, he criticized universities for giving more weight to students’ skin color. He stated that this practice goes against the founding principles of our country.
Eliminating racial discrimination means eradicating it entirely, according to Roberts. As a result, the Court found that the Equal Protection Clause is ‘universal in (its) application’ and applies “without regard to any difference of race, color or nationality. Because “the guarantee of equal protection cannot mean one thing when applied to one person and to another when applied to a person of a different color”
Black student enrollment decreased slightly from 5.3 percent in 2020 to 4.91 percent in fall 2022, according to data from Auburn University. Barkley expressed his determination to address Auburn’s historic lack of diversity at the same time that he acknowledges it. He explained that although he had originally considered restricting his legacy to black students, the recent ruling had a significant influence on his choice.
We have always lacked diversity, Barkley said. To ensure that we are more diverse, I am doing my part.