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Affirmative Action

June 16, 1996

* Contrary to your assertion ("Blacks, Jews Take New Steps to Heal Divisions," June 10), the Anti-Defamation League does not and has never opposed affirmative action.

The ADL has always supported the original conception of affirmative action as calling for equality of opportunity, not equality of result. As such, we endorse special recruiting and educational efforts to ensure that victims of discrimination can have the training and tools necessary to compete in a merit-based process.

However, the ADL has consistently opposed quotas, racial preferences and the use of race as an absolute qualification for a position. Such policies fly in the face of our Constitution and its "equal protection of the laws."

There are those who do oppose affirmative action and the opening up of our society and its institutions. We have never been among them.

DAVID A. LEHRER

Regional Director

ADL, Los Angeles

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