Will Someone Please Explain Diversity to Me?
I'm old, and recently it seems that a lot of what is going on in the world, and most especially America, confuses me. No, I don't have Alzheimer's or senile dementia. It just confuses me that so many adults, especially politicians, can't see things clearly.
Take the newest huge liberal cause: diversity. When I was younger, we had affirmative action, which meant that minorities who were not as well-qualified as a white person for acceptance at a college, to be hired for a job, or to be promoted got all of this because of the color of their skin. Evidently that didn't work out as well as it should have, because now we have the major problem of diversity, or the lack thereof.
Central Washington University, who just won a prestigious award for diversity, defines it thus: individual differences (e.g., personality, learning styles, and life experiences) and group/social differences (e.g., race/ethnicity, class, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin , and ability as well as cultural, political, religious, and other affiliations).
A study I read said that only about 30% of America's companies have diversity departments. Who could possibly keep track of all of those things? If we want to be truly diverse, what about including physical differences: weight, height, vision, body shape, degree and type of disability, etc.? And what about intellectual differences? Why isn't anyone screaming about equal rights for all the people who could be included in one of those groups? Shouldn't Central Washington University include the items enumerated above in their definition?
Television isn't totally diverse. There is BET (Black Entertainment Television) and other channels to meet the needs of other groups. However, there isn't a WET (White Entertainment Television) channel. It simply wouldn't be permitted, because it wouldn't be inclusive or diverse. Almost all shows seem to have some blacks and at least one LGBT person, whether they fit into the plot or not. That is, of course, with the exception of Empire, where a white person is rarely seen. Maybe that's part of a reverse diversity plan, where stations that are not black or another minority have to have a percentage of their shows for only minorities.
The Academy Awards weren't diverse enough this year for Jesse Jackson. I always thought that the writers, cast, crew, etc. were picked for their ability to do a good job and earn money for the company producing the film. I wasn't aware until this year that we should have had quotas, or counted the number of people of each race who participated in the making of a film. Thanks for that, Jesse. I'll be sure to count all the people in every film I see from now on to make sure that proper percentages are represented. Maybe the races and ethnicities of the producers, directors, cast, and crew should be listed in the credits to ensure that we are going to see diverse films. Films are rated for violence, language, and sexual content. Maybe we should be working on a diversity score so you would know instantly whether or not the film you were seeing is appropriately diverse. And now, the Emmys aren't diverse enough, even though the two women nominated for best actress are both black.
Then, just when I thought I couldn't get any more confused, the government threw a big wrench into the whole mess. Jeannie DeAngelis recently wrote an article for American Thinker about "The Fundamental Transformation of America's Neighborhoods." Now we're all going to be forced to be diverse in our living arrangements as well. I wonder how that plan will work in Dearborn, Michigan, which is almost totally Muslim. Will Christians, who are a majority in this country, be forced to move to Dearborn? Or will the Muslims in Dearborn be forced to move to other cities or communities? Or is religion not considered in diversity planning?
Colin Flaherty, author of Don't Make the Black Kids Angry, recently did a podcast called "The White People are Coming." In it you hear a black woman complaining about some white people moving into her previously all black neighborhood. When that happens, for some reason, it's called "gentrification," not diversity.
You cannot force companies, communities, groups, neighborhoods, etc. to be diverse. It just doesn't work in the real world. Take the AFL/NFL for example. Both groups are primarily black. Why? Because obviously black players are superior to those of other races/ethnicities. Franchises want the best players for their teams because the fans want to see winning teams. If inferior players are hired for some arbitrary reason and the team consistently loses, the franchise will probably go out of business. Everybody loses.
Would you want yourself or a loved one cared for by a nurse who gained entrance to college over more qualified people and who was pushed through to meet some diversity quota? How about having your money handled by someone who was hired so the company could be more diverse but wasn't nearly as qualified as the person who wasn't hired? If your house is burning, do you want the best firefighters or the ones who were hired so there was more diversity? I bet you would want the best, even if they're all purple.
It's the same for where people choose to live. They look for an area that meets their needs and their budget. I live in a small house in a location of my choosing because it meets my needs and I can afford it. I have friends who have very large houses in affluent neighborhoods. They worked hard to achieve what they did. Why should someone who didn't feel "entitled" to live in the same type of house in the same neighborhood? The only way that can happen is if the government subsidizes most of the cost.
What happens to the people who don't get what they want because something is diverse enough already? Maybe diversity should be expanded to make sure minorities are diverse, so those less qualified have the same opportunities as those who have qualifications?
Diversity, from what I can see happening now, won't make us a better, stronger country. It will push more people into wanting to get something for nothing. When that happens, why should anybody try to achieve anything? People should achieve on their own merits, not on some arbitrary plan.
So I continue to be confused. If anyone can help clarify this whole mess for me, especially why it is necessary, leave a comment.
Claire Hawks is a gray-haired granny and retired from both her nursing and IT careers.