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Proposals that African-Americans should be compensated for years of deprivation by being accorded special or "preferential" treatment in such areas as housing, employment, and education are continuing to provoke enormous debate throughout the United States.  Much of the controversy centers around the implied use of quota systems to implement such compensatory treatment.  For years, those concerned with achieving equality have believed that consideration of color must always be irrelevant lest it be used as an exclusionary device.  Yet, despite many laws which forbid discrimination on the basis of color, little real equality has resulted.  Should Americans now actively adopt the recognition of color as an instrument for reaching a fully equal society?