Since the my.hsj.org website is for high-school journalism, I presume the author is an immature teenager who wasn't alive for Clinton's impeachment, much less the Civil Rights movement. Here's her take on AA and my response:
Discrimination in Reverse
By Emily Fishman
These days however the United States is a drastically different place in terms of social and cultural acceptance and blindness to differences in race. Affirmative Action is an outdated program that continues to pander to and give minorities wildly exorbitant benefits regardless of merit and is blind to the changed attitudes of United States citizens.
People constantly hear that for race to cease to be an issue, it must be completely ignored, yet we in America still fund and support a policy that underscores the differences among people. African Americans and Native Americans appear to have total equality under the law in America—what Affirmative Action does is instill the idea that minorities are not actually just normal people, they are somehow inferior and thus need extra help to succeed and be on the same level as everyone else.
One of the most exasperating aspects of Affirmative Action is that it not only gives preferential treatment to minorities, but also gives the impression that it hinders the ability of those not affiliated with an Affirmative Action endorsed minority to achieve success. If someone is part of a Native American tribe, his chances of acceptance into an Ivy League institution are markedly higher than the white student in his class in terms of GPA and academic record; but because the Native American's ancestors were discriminated against several decades ago, the eighteen year old white student must pay.
If there's any affirmative action in admissions left--a doubtful proposition--it'll do what it's supposed to do. Namely, give the Native student a small boost to compensate for the many advantages the white student already has.
Your presumption that racial discrimination is gone just because it's against the law is naive and ridiculous. AA levels the playing field that's still badly tilted against minorities.
For more on the subject, see "Save the White Race!" Sticker and Affirmative-Action Bake Sale.