[Marxism] Affirmative Action

Mark Lause markalause at gmail.com
Sat Jun 21 22:11:23 MDT 2008


I've always defended affirmative action--and still do--but I've never
had illusions that it was going to do much.  And have evidently been
too close to its implimentation to maintain Joaquin's faith in it.
And I think that Shane's critical stance towards it hardly makes him "
a political opponent and ideological enemy of the Black Liberation
Movement."

Nixonian affirmative action aimed primarily at a public relations
exercise to get black and brown faces on institutions that generally
have little concern for black or brown peoples..  This includes
business, government agencies, universities, etc.  In higher
education, affirmative action usually ends up in hiring the child of
some African or Caribbean elite rather than an African-American.

At it's worse, btw, affirmative action becomes simply an excuse to not
fill a job.  The painful essays Louis has been posting about the
gutting of higher education have resulted.  It got to the point where
I work that the bosses tried to can a job search on affirmative action
here because we wanted to hire a black sociologist who actually had
two doctorates.   Indeed, all these decisions were made by a clique of
old white Republican guys....

People may say that that wasn't what it was set up to do, but if it
wasn't set up to do this, why are the mandates written to allow it,
eh?  You want something serious?  Start with correcting inequalities
at the input end, which would create real opportunities for many, many
more  It's set up the way it is because it's a government mandate, a
directive, not a transitional demand imposed and enforced by a mass
movement.

ML




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