Affirmative Action and the CCRI

Dennis Putnam putnamd at ATLODBS1.HAYES.COM
Tue Jul 30 14:11:20 MDT 1996

> I'm not sure what is circular here, the aggragate average is not the same
> as every individual.  I agree that what makes a qualified individual
> depends in great part upon work ethic and perseverence, I continue this
> mode of reasoning by saying that AS POPULATIONS there is no difference
> between white and black, and therefore they should be proportionatly
> represented in the workforce of any employer.  As for your contention that
> "there is no individual that cannot be successful"  that is the ideal but
> unfortunatly it is not the case.  Too often, sometimes without a concious
> effort people judge the qualifications of one person to perform a task to
> be a function of the lightness of their skin (and hair).  Thus while it is
> possible for anyone to achieve success, the odds are stacked against
> blacks.  I argue that quotas provide a valid methodology to check to see
> if a firm's hiring practices are not stacked in favour of one race.

We have to agree to disagree. There are just too many blacks that have
acheived success without the help of Jackson, NCAA[L]CP, Clinton, etc. to
accept your premise.

> WHY? I would argue that quotas are in fact a living operalization of
> "equal protection under the law"

Re-read the convoluted statement you just wrote. You are arguing that
discrimination is 'equal protection under the law.' Can you not see the nonsense
of that postion.

> If a firm, with 1000 employees, in a city that is 50% black has a
> workforce that is 75% white what is the probablity that they have hired
> the best person in each hiring event?   You might agrue 100% because the
> market would punish them if they didn't.  I don't believe that the
> invisible hand of the market is that sensitive, I do know that a table of
> binomial probabilities is that sensitive.

You are looking for absolutes where none exist. You will never get 100%
compliance because everything we are talking about involves humans and
human nature. The market, if permitted (it is not permitted today because
of AA) will acheive better result. It is human nature to resist arbitrary
requirements like AA, whereas market forces create an incentive, and human
nature is to follow incentives.

> So you are claiming that when a firm like I have outlined above exists it
> is only because white people work harder?  Why do you not think that the
> black applicants work as hard as white applicants on average?

I claim no such thing. Why ask me about the work ethic of non-existant
whites vs. non-existant blacks in a non-existant town with a non-existant
firm? This is your straw horse, not mine, so only you know the answers and
you can adjust the hypothetical anyway you want to counter anything I say.

> I know that you are not, but I think you are aguing a postion that if a
> firm wants to discriminate they should be allowed to in the name of
> freedom.  I cannot support that positon legally or morally, a rare
> convergence of the law and morality

So if I understand what you are saying. Discrimination is immoral and illegal
so you cannot support it. AA is, by defnintion, discrimination and thus, by
your statement, immoral and illegal but you can support it. Yet, discrimination
is immoral and illegal so you cannot support it. While AA is, by definition,
discrimination and thus, by your statement, immoral and illegal but you support
it. But discrimination is immoral and illegal ...

I think I have it. Now I can see the light and support AA completely.</sarcasm>

> Still blind but desperately tring to understand

Trying to understand requires a change in the thought process. That is a
difficult thing to acheive. Liberalism is base on emotion and requires no
effort at all. Conservatism is based on thoughful evaluation of facts and
results. That is hard work and lots of effort.

Dennis Putnam, Manager
Technical Planning and Services
Hayes Microcomputer Products, Inc.

Opinions expressed are mine and should not be viewed as an official positon of
Hayes or its management.

"Our Founding Fathers did not create our civil liberties ... They safegarded
them." Tanya Mataksa, NRA-ILA Executive Director.

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