Nonprofit organizations in a lawsuit against the fellows of Harvard College and the Harvard Law School Review received a lesson on civil action Friday, when U.S. District Judge Leo T. Sorokin of the District of Massachusetts dismissed their lawsuit challenging how race and gender are considered in student applications, faculty hiring and articles for publication.

The two plaintiffs—Faculty, Alumni and Students Opposed to Racial Preferences and the Coalition for Meritocracy at Universities—alleged that using race and gender-based affirmative-action policies when selecting students violates Titles VI and IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which govern discrimination. The October 2018 lawsuit claimed those policies meant white men were pulling the short straws, as more consideration went to women and minorities.

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