Diversity, race as proxy, and religion as proxy
lesl at UDEL.EDU
Sun Mar 11 00:21:37 PST 2001
my experience around here is that pretty many faculty do attend their
church, although I do not ask. My basic concern for hiring blacks is
that they were discriinated against here; we were de jure segregated and
we have yet to live down that imagein the balck community. In a 17%
black state, the student bodyis five percent black , while the percent
at the hbc (formerly de jure black) is 50%.
"Volokh, Eugene" wrote:
> The argument is now shifting from a remedying discrimination
> rationale to a "diversity of experiences, outlooks, and ideas"
> rationale. We've of course discussed the latter point (though to be
> frank also the former point) extensively on the list; but my basic
> reaction is that I'll believe that people are really interested in
> "diversity of experiences, outlooks, and ideas" when they start giving
> preferences to devout Christians or other groups that certainly have
> their own diverse ideas, experiences, and attitudes, and that are
> certainly underrepresented on many faculties. See generally
> http://www.law.ucla.edu/faculty/volokh/diversit.htm (43 UCLA L. Rev.
> How many U Del faculty members are Christians who regularly go
> to church? Are they underrepresented compared to their fraction of
> the public at large (probably about 35-40% of the people in the normal
> faculty age groups)? Are you concerned that they might claim this
> underrepresentation means intentional discrimination or at least
> illegal disparate impact? Don't you want exposure to their "diverse
> points of view and diverse life experiences"? What affirmative steps
> is the university taking to make sure that they are included?
> Needless to say, I'm not encouraging religious preferences,
> whether in the name of diversity or not. I think this example shows
> that even the noble end of diversity of experiences, outlooks, and
> ideas doesn't justify the means of discrimination. But if I'm wrong,
> and the intellectual diversity rationale is compelling enough to trump
> the Equal Protection Clause, then it seems hard to see why the same
> wouldn't apply with regard to religious preferences as well as race
> preferences. (And, of course, the presence of race preferences
> without the presence of religious preferences would potentially make
> the policy unconstitutionally underinclusive with respect to the
> interest in intellectual diversity.)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Leslie Goldstein [SMTP:lesl at UDEL.EDU]
> Sent: Thursday, March 08, 2001 5:25 AM
> To: CONLAWPROF at listserv.ucla.edu
> Subject: Re: Affirmative action redux
> I might buy it if we were talking about a hisotirically black
> school state college that was 90% black and the white admits were
> slightly below mean or median but not out of line from plenty of
> blacks admitted. The arg would be that exposure to diverse point
> sof view and people form diverse life experiences is educational
> for the res t o f the student body. In other words , I find your
> point of view as to what "merits" college admission unjustifiably
> narrow. On hiring I might favor the white preference if it were
> in a majority-black country (say sub-saharan Africa) with a
> lenghty tradition of favoring blacks by ethnicity in govt. jobs.
> In other words, it all depends.
> "Volokh, Eugene" wrote:
> OK, let's say that someone was defending his
> practice of giving a preference to whites in hiring. "I'm
> disturbed by the assumption," he says, "that my employees
> are appointed EITHER on the white preference system OR on
> merit. Remember, most of the time there is no 'best person
> for the job'; there are several well qualified candidates,
> any one of whom would probably do fine. The other tests of
> qualifications are notoriously unreliable (ask anyone who's
> hired people whether they can confidently predict who can
> work out and who can't); so when I let in someone with
> marginally lower paper credentials because he's white, I'm
> not really compromising 'merit standards', so long as he's
> absolutely 'well qualified.'"
> I think that most people wouldn't buy this. They'd
> (1) The other tests of qualifications, even if they
> are imperfect, are fairly decent predictors, or else you
> wouldn't be using them for anyone.
> (2) Thus, when you depart from these tests in
> considering the applicant's race, you are indeed hiring
> someone who is less qualified -- even if only slightly less
> qualified -- because of the person's race.
> (3) You might be able to defend this decision to
> prefer people based on race even though they are somewhat
> less qualified, but you have to defend it on the merits, not
> by denying that you are indeed departing from merit
> principles and hiring the less qualified over the more
> (4) And if you think the other tests are flawed,
> you can fix them, but you can't keep using these flawed
> tests and at the same time use them as an excuse for race
> I'd say the same here.
> Judy Baer writes:
> I'm disturbed by an assumption I find (perhaps wrongly)
> lurking in these
> last posts: that one is appointed EITHER on affirmative
> action OR on merit.
> Remember, personnel experts tell us that of the time there
> is no "best
> person for the job;" there are several well qualified
> candidates, any one of
> whom would probably do fine (as well as a pool of minimally
> candidates, and some who are unqualified.) Remember, also,
> that to make aff.
> action and merit mutually exclusive is part of the reason we
> have this
> Judy Baer
> Texas A&M
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