Diversity fellowships: an exclusive club
A disturbing trend has emerged in the modern Diversity Movement, enabled by the establishment class in government, media, and the corporate world. It’s the emergence of “Diversity Fellowships,” which are ostensibly exclusive clubs from which only straight White males are excluded.
I first noticed this phenomenon when I saw a posting for a Major League Baseball Diversity Fellowship on a bulletin board at a local university in my hometown of Rochester, NY. Here’s a brief overview of the MLB Diversity Fellowship program (emphasis mine):
- Open to people of color and female candidates.
- Candidates must be recent graduates (2017 graduates to spring 2022 graduates) with either a bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree or related advanced degree.
- Recommended GPA of 3.0 or higher
- A passion for and knowledge of baseball is helpful but not required
However, it turns out that this blatantly discriminatory feel-good initiative isn’t confined to Major League Baseball. Here are just a few of the many “diversity” fellowships various organizations offer:
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra has apparently tried to finesse the exclusion of White males by using the following language (emphasis mine):
...a goal of welcoming up to three musicians who identify as Black, Latino, Indigenous or as a member of any group traditionally underrepresented in U.S. symphony orchestras.
The salient question is what defines a “group traditionally underrepresented in U.S. symphony orchestras”? One may assume that it includes any variety of the LGBTQIA+ categories. Certainly, an unrepresented group excludes straight White males.
The Newhouse Graduate Newspaper Fellowship for Minorities is an 18-month program that provides generous annual awards to minority students. Fellows receive full tuition scholarships, $1,400-per-month stipends, health insurance coverage, up to $1,500 to cover moving expenses to Syracuse, up to $800 for travel to professional conferences, and up to $1,000 for books, equipment, fees, and other academic expenses.
The National Diversity Internship Program (NDIP) provides professional development and enrichment opportunities through real-world experience. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) contracts a highly talented and diverse [non-White?] pool of interns to fulfill intermittent employment needs through NDIP.
These are just a few of many “diversity fellowships/internships” that institutions offer exclusively to racial minorities, women, and LGBT candidates. In other words, straight, White males need not apply. These programs must be challenged in court at every turn if equal opportunity has any chance in America.
Unfortunately, continuous incremental assaults have warped the Civil Rights Act of 1964. When the bill was being debated in 1964, Democrat Sen. Hubert H. Humphrey himself stood on the Senate floor during debate on the measure and declared, “‘I will start eating the pages’ of the law if anyone can find a clause that calls for quotas, preferences, or racial balance in jobs or education.”
Well, as the late sociologist Martin L. Gross once commented, if Humphrey were alive today, he’d have indigestion after seeing how this law has been abused in the “woke” 21st Century.
The worst offenders, ironically, are in the legal community. Here’s proof:
The Diversity and Inclusion Fellowship Program provides opportunities for lawyers in under-represented groups such as ethnically diverse lawyers, persons with disabilities, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, to actively participate within the Criminal Justice Section and prepare them to take on leadership roles within the Section.
In other words, straight, White, non-disabled males need not apply, which is a blatant violation of Title VII, which expressly prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin. Title VII applies to employers with 15 or more employees. One would assume that the leading organization representing the legal community in the U.S. would know this and steer clear of any impropriety in the programs it offers.
Diversity exclusivity now infects science writing fellowships. What could possibly go wrong? Well, for one thing, this generation of science writers will most likely inject their woke politics at every turn into a field that was largely objective in decades past. As evidence of where this trend is headed, look at the stated priorities of The National Association of Science Writers’ Diversity Committee regarding applications for their NASW Diversity Reporting Grant:
The National Association of Science Writers’ Diversity Committee is seeking to fund strong, high-impact story proposals, involving one or more freelance writers, that will focus on how a science, environment, or health-related issue is affecting marginalized communities.
We prioritize applications from people with diverse backgrounds, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, physical ability, nationality, age, socioeconomic status, and/or belief.
Several conservative civil rights organizations are fighting this trend but, unfortunately, most of the lawsuits only target academia. They must target other organizations, both public and private. The currently configured U.S. Supreme Court has signaled that it’s open to hearing these types of cases. Let’s not waste this opportunity.
Michael A. Bertolone, M.S. is a past Executive V.P. of the Monroe County (N.Y) Law Enforcement Association, and a freelance writer in Rochester, NY. His eBook The War on Equality: How Equity is Destroying Our Society is available on Amazon.