discrimination vs evaluation

Tibor Benke (benke@SFU.CA)
Mon, 6 Jun 1994 15:18:58 -0700

John O'Brien writes:

>I agree with Rick that there are unknown number of minorities and women
>who have been denied employment because of discrimination (that has never
>been argued).
>The main point I am trying to make is that discrimination against anyone
>(minority or white-male) is wrong, and not justifiable morally. Two wrongs
>do not make a right.
>The second point I am trying to make is that gender or skin color or age or
>religion or political party or ethnic background are not academic disciplines,
>and cannot be equated to academic specialties. That is like trying to compare
>apples and nuclear weapons under the category of a literal `food source.'

It seems to me that the unstated premise here is that there is some method
of objectively measuring potential candidates' "qualifications" such that
given a set of candidates, each element of the set can, at least, be
ordinally sequenced. Presumeably, this is done by seeing how closely each
candidate's CV, interview performance, guest presentation, etc. aproximates
some objective set of criteria. These criteria, in turn, are formulated by
the hireing organization based on its current requirements.

If hireing procedures were this easily formalizeable, we wouldn't need
hireing committees, a well trained bureuocrat could do the work.

Unfortunately, as everyone knows, things are not that cut and dry. If one
of the criteria happened to be: "Thorough grasp of the history and social
processes involved in race, gender, and class based opression, preferably
with an emic perspective" most white males would not even make the short
list - 'all other things being equal', as thay say.

>@> (*)%(^)%
>@> Tibor Benke /benke@sfu.ca (^)%(#)
>@> Graduate Student (MA program)
>@> Department of Sociology and Anthropology
>@> Simon Fraser University,
>@> Burnaby, B.C., Canada. V5A 1S6 >@>
>@> Nota Bene: The opinions herein expressed are merely my own ! >@>^^^^^^^^^^^^