Today, the Washington Post published an analysis of the fallout from Michigan voters approving Proposition 2, which will end all racial preferences in hiring and promoting employees, contracting, and entry into schools. The vote was decisive, fully 58% of voters agreed that affirmative action should be banned. But don't worry, my Friends on the Left! The government of the lawyers, by the lawyers and for the lawyers has rushed into the breech to save racism --Sorry! I meant equal opportunity for minorities.
I know that some folks might question my Politically Incorrect humor in that last sentence, so let me explain. I am a Conservative. I freely admit it. I am not a racist. I have no opinion, one way or the other regarding anyone's race, gender, or sexual orientation.
Of course, I expect the for same for me in return.
I believe that racism is not only wrong. It is stupid, stupid, stupid. It makes no sense personally, economically, or politically.
Therefore, I am steadfastly opposed to affirmative action in all its ways, shapes and forms.
Why? Because affirmative action is nothing less than racism and discrimination. It is wrong and stupid whether it is expressed against blacks and other minorities or against white males.
I happen to be in good company, since Michigan and California both agreed with what I wrote above. Indeed, they agree in overwhelming numbers.
Now, the Left, as is its wont, is trying to find ways around the Will of the People. The ACLU, no surprise, is wading in with litigation that will attempt to slow or reverse implementation of Proposition 2. Kary L. Moss, the executive director of the ACLU in Michigan describes a series of "both offensive and defensive lawsuits" to determine the bill's meaning for Michigan
Kwame Kilpatrick, the mayor of Detroit, is trying to limit city contracts to only those from within the city, which is 80% black. As much as he doesn't like what the voters want, though, his spokesman, Matt Allen, seems to think it's all a done deal: "As of December 22, there can be no more gender or race preferences."
According to the Washington Post, analysts believe that racism, and fear that whites are losing out in a state where the economy hasn't been quite as strong as elsewhere, was what tipped the balance in favor of Proposition 2. Linda Parker, Michigan's director of the Department of Civil Rights claimed that proponents "sold a bill of goods to Michigan voters, and played into the fears we have".
Look, here's the problem with what Ms. Parker said: she is playing upon the stereotype that anyone who's opposed to affirmative action (or anything promoted by the Left) is full of hate, fear, bigotry, and evil. Ms. Parker, in other words, is engaging in stereotyping in a racist and bigoted manner.
How dare I say that? Easily! I look into myself, and see the lie that Ms. Parker and all those Nanny Staters on the Left tell themselves and the undereducated.
In 1994, one of Newt Gingrich's advisers describe affirmative action as a form of sado-masochism in that you get to force someone who thinks you're a turkey to hire you anyway.
There is another way to look at affirmative action. Let's say that my great-grandfather was a known bank robber. It was an established fact that he robbed banks but he was never brought to justice. He died unpunished for his crimes and this was a great injustice. Therefore, we are going to put you in jail to make up for the injustice of my great-grandfather's life of crime. This will make me feel better, since I wouldn't have the guilt of my forebear's sins. And you will feel better since you are helping to correct the tragic injustices of the past.
And Liberals will feel better because they have found a whole new victim class to exploit and ensnare on their plantation of the Nanny State.
Repeating a theme which I will visit time and again in this blog, a truly free market would eliminate the effects of racism exposing the economic stupidity of bigotry.
Consider this thought experiment: You and I each own a business, selling widgets, say. We are competitors, each vying for a larger slice of the economic pie. I, for the purposes of this experiment, am bigoted against, say, purple people. I won't buy from them regardless of the price they offer, I won't sell to them regardless of how much they'd pay, I won't hire them regardless of how little they'd work for. You, on the other hand, only care about the green of the money. You'll buy from anyone who'll give you a good value for a good price. You'll sell to the highest bidder, regardless of color. And you'll hire the workers who give you the best return for your investments in their labor.
Now comes the crunch: Which one of us will still be in business ten, twenty, thirty years down the line? You, of course! You will out compete me at every turn. You will collect profits while I pile up debt.
So then, in a free market, what power did my bigotry bestow upon me? Absolutely nothing! That is the beauty of free markets. It equalizes everyone in terms of of opportunity, rather than the color of their skins or their gender, or... uhm, just about any other way the Left would like to divide us.
And what does affirmative action offer? Well, it offers hopelessness to their "favored" minorities, who are taught that they can not do for themselves without the Left's programs, it balkanizes us from each other in that we now become hyphenated Americans, and it cheats everyone because the incompetent are promoted beyond their abilities.
All of the above reasons are why affirmative action is stupid. Morally, it is every bit as reprehensible as the racism it seeks to remedy.
Bigotry, regardless of the motivations, is stupid and immoral. So let's put away our Race Colored Glasses!
Copyright Nov. 18th, 2006