If a racist owns a business and is compelled, via affirmative action, to hire a minority, is this not a measure of control? For that matter, it could ruin his business if he can't put aside his prejudice and find a way to work with this employee that was forced upon him. If a non-racist owns a business and is compelled to hire a less qualified minority individual, is this, not only a measure of control, but also of oppression, since the lilklihood of this business' success depends directly on the ability of the workers? What exactly gives the government the right to ruin either man's business?
No. The racist goes into business knowing that he may be compelled to hire in this fashion, as does the second business man. They, of their own free will, entered into business and should have understood all that going into business might require of them.
As for the ruin of said businesses, the racist' business was ruined from the start. The second business, well, the scenario just doesn't match reality. It's not so simple as you make it sound. Businesses have to maintain a certain degree of diversity, but this does not mean less qualified candidates get the job. This just means that companies have extra incentive to hire and keep qualified minority candidates.
I know these examples may be considered extreme cases, but even in ordinary cases I don't see why any government should have the power to manage a man's livelihood. We in the west like to promote freedom, or is that just a lie? Without freedom is equality even possible? It seems to be that affirmative action is more about taking away freedom than relieving inequalities.
Every government manages every man's livelihood.
Equality is possible without freedom; we can be equally unfree. But freedom is not possible without equality. Resting on my previous arguments regarding the success of affirmative action at increasing equality, if the concern is freedom, affirmative action must be viewed as positive. Even if you think that affirmative action limits some economic freedoms of racist businessmen, the net gain to freedom obviously favors affirmative action.
Austin Texas has almost NO racial distinction unless from people not from here.
That's almost funny. Maybe you just don't see the racism, but my Hispanic friends in Austin would disagree with what you say. Now, Austin is a college town and, apparently, the town is generally open and accepting of minorities. But being better than, say, Natchez, Mississippi, doesn't mean that race is not an issue in Austin, Texas.
You keep pointing out disadvantages in relation to affirmative action. Isn't this a form of racism? Seeing people as disadvantaged because of their skin color is the same thing as considering them to be inferior. Affirmative action promotes this idea.
Hardly. Recognizing that certain segments of the population have, and continue to be, systematically treated by society as somehow less human than other portions of society does not mean you think said oppressed segment is less human that other portions of society. Affirmative action does not promote the idea that some people are less human, affirmative action recognizes that some people have been treated as less human and attempts to help ameliorate the problem.
It isn't the color of the skin itself that disadvantages people - its the way people are treated that disadvantages them, and one feature highlighted by bigots happens to be skin color.
I am about equality in the purest form. The purest form of equality comes down to who has earned it more.
I think there must be a typo here. People must earn their equality as humans? How? If you mean earn equality by fighting bigotry, well, I agree. But bigotry isn't some enemy force that can be routed and mopped up. Bigotry is an ever present hatred.
I am also a proponent of dedication determines results. If you do not acheive something, it is because you did not try hard enough. Race should have no bearing on this. You are never going to rid the world of ignorance. That is a given. We know this. We can work at it for 1000 years and it will still be there. But affirmative action, as demonstrated by your comments is proving to do nothing more than change the shape of that ignorance. It went from disgust to pity. Instead of inferior, they are disadvantaged. With affirmative action, a minority is placed in higher priority than Joe Blow White-guy because of the color of his skin. This is still racism and inequality. It is just a different form.
Again, I do not buy this argument. My comments do not demonstrate that affirmative action reshapes ignorance. If you look back at those comments, you will see that I argue the opposite is the case; and those arguments are as yet untouched in this thread.
It's not so complicated.
Segments of the population are disadvantaged due to historic hatred and current hatred.
Affirmative action increases diversity, and therefore shrinks hatred, and affirmative action also provides opportunities for segments of the population which generally have fewer opportunities than other segments of the population.
White people are not harmed by affirmative action, and in no way does affirmative action dehumanize white people. Before we call something racism, let's try to remember what racism actually looks like.
The reason for the final statement in relation to affirmative action and racism is simple. When a government feels the need to control the people in a moral way, it has admitted that the people are far to ignorant to control themselves or conduct themselves in a moral manner. Once this has been admitted, all is lost. We cannot control morality. All we can do is combat ignorance.
Not quite. The government only admits that some people are too ignorant to control/conduct themselves in a moral manner. This happens to be true. Some people are just hateful.
Show me one government that has never coerced it's citizens on some moral matter. Now think about how many government policies, aside from affirmative action, coerce people on some moral matter. Just look at the Constitution - free speech, free practice of religion. Are these not examples of moral coercion?
Again, I am not arguing the good intention of affirmative action. I am not even arguing the need for it at the time. What I AM arguing is the need for it today. No one alive today was alive during slavery. No one today knows about slavery save for stories in history books. The ignorance that exists today is from years of seclusion. Today, an African American is President Elect. Today, there are more female and minority executives than white male. Today, the "minority" out numbers the "majority" in most major cities.
No one today was alive during slavery. True. So what? Does this fact somehow erase the lingering damage of slavery? Hardly. Do you think that when all Holocaust survivors are dead that the Holocaust will somehow no longer have an impact on the Jewish community? No, we should know better.
Besides, the end of slavery wasn't the end of institutional racism in this nation. Institutional racism against African Americans continues to this very day.
An African American president does not erase the lingering damages of slavery, or the 150 years of abuse suffered by African Americans.
You mention executives - wonderful. But the number of executives does not change the fact that women and other minorities in the US earn less than white men in the US. Sexism and racism is still a problem - just ask some of those executives.
The issue isn't which group of people is largest. Minority-majority - irrelevant. Were the common English better off than their Norman conquerors? The English certainly held a majority.
We can no longer treat it like the 1950's. This is the year 2008. A lot has changed in half a century. Our ideals, regulations and government need to start reflecting this change. Even more so, it should be the driving force of this change.
Yes, much has changed and the government must keep pace with this change. Good news, though. Like so many other policies, the people who shaped affirmative action were pretty smart. Now, it's not perfect, but it has been effective and continues to be effective at increasing diversity and increasing opportunity for disadvantaged people in the US.