On November 7 Michigan voters chose to end affirmative action preferences based on race or gender in education, government jobs and government contracting. But something else may have ended as well: the national debate on affirmative action. This does not mean that affirmative action’s job is done. It does not mean that racial minorities are a declining part of the population — in fact, immigration and relatively high fertility rates among African Americans and Latinos ensure that just the opposite is true. It means that Americans may no longer feel collective responsibility to end racial and gender inequalities — and in particular disadvantage among blacks.