Copyright (c) 2001 Thurgood Marshall Law Review
Thurgood Marshall Law Review
ARTICLE: THE LAW SCHOOL ADMISSION TEST SCANDAL: PROBLEMS OF BIAS AND CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
27 T. Marshall L. Rev. 1
Anthony Peirson Xavier Bothwell *
This article argues that the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is inherently and unfairly biased against racial minorities. It further argues that the white- dominated institution that administers the test has been tainted by a history of apparent or actual financial conflicts of interest. The author concludes that the LSAT should be abolished and that law school admissions should be based on an evaluation of the applicant's entire background and potential.
Scores on the Law School Admission Test do not correlate to performance in law school or law practice. In the final analysis, the scores correlate to the race and socioeconomic background of the test taker.
The LSAT closes the doors of the legal profession to members of groups already disadvantaged by conditions of contemporary American society. Mandatory use of the test is as disingenuous as legal devices that disenfranchised Mississippi blacks in the 1950s and German Jews in the 1930s.
The American Bar Association (ABA), founded in 1878 as a guild dedicated to de jure racist exclusionary practices, continued openly to pursue racist goals until the 1960s. De facto racist practices of today's ABA include non-accreditation of law schools that do not require applicants to take the LSAT. The ABA's policies prohibit accreditation of a school that does not use an "acceptable" test of "aptitude." ABA officials have never found any test acceptable other than the LSAT, even though the LSAT organization concedes it is not an "aptitude" test, and independent reviews found it biased. ...
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