“U.S. Supreme Court Ready to Ban Affirmative Action in Universities?”

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On the front page of the press, this Tuesday, November 1, the legislative elections, today, in Israel. The decision of the Iranian authorities to organize this week in Tehran public trials for nearly a thousand people, arrested during the demonstrations of the last weeks. The reopening, in the United States, of the very sensitive case of positive discrimination in universities, by the Supreme Court. And an astonishing legal advance in Argentina.

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On the front page of the press, the legislative elections today in Israel. The fifth, in less than four years.

Will current centrist Prime Minister Yair Lapid be able to form a new coalition? Or will ex-Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, prosecuted for corruption, return to power? The two leaders make the front page of Jerusalem Post, which evokes the desire of voters to “put an end to the political instability which has plagued the country for three years”. The conservative daily says it understands Israelis’ “electoral fatigue”, but tries to mobilize them by explaining that the race is “so tight” and its results “so crucial for the future of Israel”, that it is “even more important to vote this time. “Every vote counts, vote!” asks the newspaper. And that’s also what the left-wing newspaper demands Ha’aretz, which says: “Vote, yes, but certainly not for Benyamin Netanyahu nor for the religious Zionist Itamar Ben Gvir”. This disciple of the racist and anti-Arab rabbi, Meir Kahane, boss of the far-right Otzma Yehudit party, “Jewish Force”, has become an essential figure in Israeli political life and the pet peeve of Haaretz, which asks voters to stop dead a possible return to power of Netanyahu, in the framework of an alliance with the “ultranationalist extremist” Itamar Ben Gvir.

Also on the front page is the decision of the Iranian authorities to organize public trials this week in Tehran for nearly a thousand people arrested during the demonstrations of recent weeks. According to The Guardian, up to 2000 people could be prosecuted for having protested against the death of Mahsa Amini, this young woman who died in police custody, after being beaten by the morality police, for having improperly worn her hijab, her Islamic veil. The daily specifies that these demonstrators will be judged for “subversive actions”, even for some of them, “collaboration with foreign governments”. Abroad, precisely, the condemnation of the repression in Iran is widening. According to the website IranWire, the statement last weekend by Hussein Salami, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards, who warned protesters that the authorities would not tolerate any more demonstrations – which was seen as a signal for an even greater crackdown brutality – would have led the European Union to consider classifying the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which is at the forefront of this repression, as a terrorist organization. What the United States did in 2019.

The United States, where the Supreme Court yesterday reopened a very sensitive case of positive discrimination in universities, which obliges them to take into account the color of the skin or the ethnic origin of the candidates in the examination of their files . After the questioning of the constitutional right to abortion, will the highest American legal body also go back to positive discrimination? This would indeed be a possibility, according to The New York Times, which states that the Supreme Court is currently considering admissions procedures in two of the oldest institutions in the country, Harvard University and North Carolina. The newspaper recalls that positive discrimination in universities has been highly criticized from the outset in conservative circles, who go so far as to see it as a form of “reverse racism”, while progressives consider positive discrimination as a means support minorities and promote diversity. For its part, the newspaper considers that a decision against positive discrimination in universities “would be further proof of the right turn (of the Supreme Court) after the appointment of three judges by President Trump”.

The Wall Street Journal, which clarifies, meanwhile, that the judges “consider challenging the admissions practices of Harvard and the University of North Carolina, on the grounds that they could constitute a form of unlawful discrimination against Americans of origin. Asian,” believes that the weakness in the arguments of affirmative action advocates is that they are “unable to say when racial bias in admissions will end,” thus establishing affirmative action that is bound to last forever. An inadmissible prospect, according to the newspaper.

We don’t leave each other on this. In the justice section, always, although in a completely different category. The world reports that Argentina has recently established, for the first time, a right of visitation for masters and mistresses of dogs, in the context of divorces. The judges based their decision on the fact that animals are sentient beings, who experience lack and are affected by separation from their masters. A very sensitive question, in a country which has 80% of pet owners. But the Argentines are not the only ones, it seems, to hold their doggies and other cats like the apple of their eye. the Huffington Post reports a survey indicating that 45% of French pet owners would like to be buried with their pet – dog owners being more numerous (51%) than cat owners (47%). Unfortunately for them, this practice is prohibited in France, at least for the moment, unlike Germany, the United Kingdom or even Switzerland.

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