Authors Nathan D. Martin and Kenneth I. Spenner show that Duke's legacies underperform as freshmen, are less likely to pursue challenging disciplines including pre-med or engineering and, generally, are less likely to pursue further study. Even the fact that their grades improve measurably during the sophomore year and remain improved is itself an argument for the inherent unfairness of legacy admissions. Why should the children of privilege get a leg up? But that question is hardly the end of the matter.
The Times can't bring itself to really bang on the hypocrisy of it all, but still it's a fair-minded piece. I think it also highlights the fact that this idea that AA is some sort of flagrant violation of the great American meritocracy is bull. I have no sympathy for people who think AA is a sin against the American dream.
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