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Layo Laniyan

Harvard and the illusion of merit

Allan Bakke, an engineer and former Marine Corps officer, applied to UC Davis Medical School twice — once in 1973 and once in 1974. Both times, he was denied. In the same special program to which he applied, a number of minority applicants with significantly lower test scores were admitted. As his interviewer for medical…

The tragedy of Kanye West

I was 12 years old, on my way to a wrestling tournament, when I first discovered Kanye West. I struggled to keep my earbuds in, but the sound still managed to flow into my ears over the roar of the bus engine. What was lost in the transmission of bass and beats that night I…

The price we’re willing to pay

Every moment happens twice: inside and outside, and they are two different histories. -Zadie Smith, White Teeth. Earlier this week, I found myself watching Brett Kavanaugh’s swearing-in ceremony. I watched as the congregation in the East Room sat silently in anticipation, as silence turned to applause when the current justices on the Supreme Court filed…
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