It’s easy to understand why so many colleges want to increase their share of faculty members who are underrepresented minorities: research suggests that cultural diversity means diversity of thought and experience -- boons to any intellectual enterprise -- and both minority and white students benefit from learning from professors who look like them, and those who don’t.
No support is offered for either claim, and there exists no uncontested or decisive support for either. (I noted this in my CHE column last week.) And there is no evidence that even if these claims were true that they are the primary reason universities are trying to increase the representation of underrepresented minorities on their faculties. Some are acting for justified reasons of compensatory justice, some are acting for craven reasons of self-interest (fear of legislatures or students or alumni demanding to see results), and some probably are acting because they've been successfully brainwashed by endless repetition of the quoted claims, the facts be damned.