"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Sunday, January 14, 2024

The Diversity Charade - Buildings Out Of Whack, Bad Doctors, And Planes That Won't Fly

The Wall Street Journal rightly noted that the Harvard Gay scandal was just the tip of the iceberg.  The university and many others like it were compromising quality for identity, willingly accepting students and teachers of inferior quality to meet diversity standards.  Harvard's problem was not that it went overboard to hire a president with a scanty academic record and limited management skills; but that it systematically downgraded its once prized standard of excellence for a show of progressive idealism. 

Worse than that, suggested the Journal, the rot and intellectual corruption goes far deeper.  Harvard has thrown in the towel concerning objective, rational inquiry and has endorsed the faux ethos of victimhood and in so doing granted automatic moral nobility to anyone with a grievance.  

Put together - affirmative action, identity politics, and a retreat from rationalism - Harvard stinks. 

While Harvard licks its wounds and tries to figure a way out of the mess it has created, avoid further negative reactions from press and public, the board of directors has no intention on backing away from its DEI (Diversity Equity Inclusion) agenda.  It is right now figuring out ways to continue its policies of intellectual compromise and to avoid sanction. 

Already the admissions office, stung by the Supreme Court rebuke of its prejudicial selection criteria, has already begun the shell game.  Race will no longer be a factor in admissions, but we encourage applicants to write about their experiences of inner city life and written with the sharp edge of oppression and marginalization clear and unmistakable. We still want ghetto students, Harvard claims, because their presence at the university will mitigate and dilute the culture of white supremacy encouraged by past administrations. 

Test scores, academic performance, moral rectitude, artistic talent, intellectual brilliance have little to do with resetting the racial compass in America.  Street creds trump country club creds, so bring on the bling. 

A telling meme is making the viral rounds on the web.  The CEO of Boeing, the company whose plane blew a gasket and a hole in the fuselage while in flight, promised in a letter of apology, to renew his efforts at insuring diversity, equity, and inclusion. 

More seriously top-tier law firms have indicated that they will no longer consider Harvard graduates.  Medical schools with far more at stake than Wall Street, will begin to look more carefully at their applicants.  It's one thing to confuse your torts, another thing to cut the wrong artery. 

Private firms have applauded the SCOTUS affirmative action decision and found it a long-awaited, convenient cover for the dismantling of their DEI departments.  For too long they have been hiring on the basis of race, shunting lesser-qualified personnel to less important jobs but giving them front room offices for greater visibility. 

In the Sixties when the civil rights movement was in its heyday, banks hired presentable black people, gave them do-nothing jobs and offices looking out glass street front windows.  They were there to be seen and nothing more.  For that the companies earned plaudits from progressive mayors and city councils, turned into tax easements. 

Before the SCOTUS decision when DEI was a top-drawer thing, the CEO of a large Washington non-profit focusing on international development, drew up a quota plan for racial diversity.  Since he only counted black faces, savvy managers hired talented, experienced, highly-credentialed Africans.  This enabled them to assemble a highly-qualified professional staff and check off the racial box instituted by the CEO.  When he realized what was happening, he said that the company needed inner city bodies, not PhD Kenyans, and so once again savvy managers hired from Anacostia and put them in the mail room. 

Who wants engineers who can't build straight bridges or buildings that will collapse? Doctors who don't know a gall bladder from a pleura?  Lawyers who can't tell this from that and turn the courtroom into a Barnum & Bailey trapeze act? No one gains from affirmative action and many are adversely affected or hurt by it. 


Black people hired on their merit are tarred with the affirmative action brush, looked at as shoo-ins because of their race not their ability, an attribution hard to shake. Those who are hired as affirmative action babies have a harder row go hoe.  They will always be looked at as damaged goods. 

Students admitted to four-year colleges on the basis of race fail after only a few semesters, drop out with little education and a mountain of debt.  Valuable academic resources are spent by these institutions for remedial education, funds which could have been used for more productive outcomes. 

The companies who hire less than qualified applicants for important positions, have to cover up, make do, shuffle and redeploy them to keep standards from falling too far.  Entire industries which share affirmative action hires and whose firms never respond honestly to inquiries about job performance suffer institution-wide. 

Not to mention the minor leagues of DEI - the handicapped, other-gendered, and mentally challenged. Under the aegis of affirmative action they too must be accommodated, fit in somewhere while their co-workers are told not to notice their incapacitation. 

The theory of 'Other Intelligences' was instituted in public schools a few decades ago.  A child might not be able to add 2+2, but she could certainly color between the lines and for that she should be applauded.  It made no difference that the skills necessary for survival in an increasingly competitive world were being downgraded or dismissed.  

Self-esteem was all that mattered; and as a result children who never learned to read, write, or reason were moved up without question through the grades only to graduate with nothing at all to mention. 

All of which is to say that the end of affirmative action and DEI charades is nigh. The American public, hammered, hectored, and intimidated by charges of racism have had enough, and will vote the rascals out in November.  

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