View Full Version : Affirmative Action
July 26th, 2006, 01:46 AM
I'd like to hear what you think about this. Do you agree with it or not? I grew up in apartheid South Africa. I was 13 when this country became democratic. Now, because I am caucasian and viewed at as part of the so called apartheid regime I struggle to get promotions in my company. Previously disadvantaged groups are given preference even if I am better qualified etc. Now I don't question that the wrongs of the past ( which I had absolutely nothing to do with ) must be corrected, but why should I suffer for something I did not create or support, I was just a kid.
It seems to be that affirmative action is just apartheid reversed or a new legal way of racism. Any comments?
July 26th, 2006, 03:18 AM
Yeah, that seems to be cropping up everywhere. My dad told me they get bitched at because they don't hire enough women at work (he's an engineering prof.) but they can't even FIND women who want the jobs! There really aren't that many women who are qualified or who want to be engineering profs. So the bureaucrats just bitch about it.
I'm sure a bunch of Americans will wander by and tell stories about quotas on hiring or enrolling black or hispanic people. Same crap deal everywhere. Bleh.
I say hire the guy who can do best. If one group can't do the job as well then the problem is deeper and hiring unqualified people will just make everything suck more. You are 100% correct methinks.
I suppose you could have interesting cases where people in different groups are equally qualified or the qualification necessary is so low that you can easily train them. In cases like that it may be useful to intentionally hire with "diversity" in mind. The only real reason I can see for that though, is to get people comfortable with different things (ie. people of all colours selling things in your store).
August 31st, 2006, 05:33 PM
I think affirmative action is one of those topics that are used as wedge to divide and further alienate different groups from each other. The arguments for it always get stuck in the past rather than focusing of actually fixing the problems of honest-to-god discrimination.
I'm more familiar with affirmative action policies in relation to college admission and I feel that the criteria used should have less to do with skin color and more to do with equality of opportunity. Money, the abundance or lack of it, has more to do with the type of school that a child goes to and the amount of opportunities that said child will have access to.
If we are going to try to right the wrongs of discrimination with legislation why not begin with economic status as the factor considered?
August 31st, 2006, 11:50 PM
That's how college works here. You get in based on grades and if you need money there are ways to get some. We lack any form of race-based quotas. If poor people are suffering in educatino though, you have to start a lot earlier if you want to give them a chance. Lots of them have problems in elementary school already. Eliminating poverty would be a hard thing to do though. :(
September 3rd, 2006, 12:32 AM
Of course eliminating poverty is difficult, if it wern't we wouldn't even know the word.
The point I was trying to make was that money can buy a better education and that economics and not race should be criteria for affirmitive action. I agree that we need to begin sooner to improve public education across the board. But, since public education (at least in america) is a system in which those in inner cities or poor rural areas don't have the same quality of education as those who live in areas with higher property taxes it isn't a crazy idea to try and even out this obvious disadvantage at college admission. Studies have shown that students who recieve affirmative action have higher rates of sucess in college. Grades measure past preformance and not potential. If a student doesn't want to succeed no one will be writing thier term papers for them, it is up to them to suceed or fail on their own once admitted. But when a student isn't given the same opportunities to succeed growing up how can we pretend that it is an even playing field when it comes to college admission?
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