Why is "diversity" such a great or necessary thing?

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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    This isn't about "elevating" people above anyone else. It is about recognising that institutional prejudices exist and that these prejudices will continue to be perpetuated without some kind of external intervention. There is absolutely nothing unfair about taking action to correct inequality in society - the only people who would be upset by that is people who have an interest in that inequality being maintained.
    yes but you don't seem to appreciate that for each BEM individual that you positively discriminate against, you are negatively discriminating against a white or majority person - for instance, I am applying to university and I am one of two applicants - myself, and an indian individual. I have the more impressive resume, but the indian person is indian. there are hardly any indians at this university. should they sacrifice me, the theoretically better candidate, for the sake of "diversity"? this is what I'm driving at - to have "diversity" is to forget about merit in a lot of cases. it's a purely aesthetic and eye-pleasing state of affairs - not something that is done for a qualified reason. race doesn't matter, right? so why should I be put down because I'm white like that in my example? why on earth does this matter? if there aren't many indians at this university, so what? wouldn't this just mean that they aren't as interested as white people in applying? why isn't that okay? why can't they have free will? why do they have to be inserted into areas of society that otherwise are not concerned about? that's like the government is not approving of their lifestyle as a member of a certain race and is trying to make it look like that lifestyle doesn't exist by inserting them into "white" fields of life - that's just pointless and unreasonable

    Of course people are not all equal which is why there are plenty of types of discrimination that are acceptable. Universities discriminate on the basis of intelligence and model casting agencies discriminate on the basis of appearance, because these are qualities that are necessary to perform these jobs properly. The problem is when people are discriminated against because of traits that have absolutely no bearing on how effectively they can perform their jobs.
    so if I was absolutely covered head to toe in tattoos and piercings, because that was a part of my social and personal essence as a human being, should I be protected against discrimination if I wanted to become prime minister? this is where I don't tend to see much meaningful difference between biological and social traits - if I am an individual, I am defined by things beyond my own control - that's for either my race or my interests; I can't shape my own interests because if I could then I would literally choose to be interested in everything in the world to be happier with my existence. my interests might be good but they could also be bad - I could be a chauvinist who thought women were less than men - so again, would that be something I should be protected for in the sense that I can't choose not to be a chauvinist mentally? I can't shape my race either, but my race as a white person is "bad" because of our generation that perpetuates white guilt - should my whiteness be something protected from discrimination? so why should the BBC not hire me because of "diversity"? what is wrong with being white to the extent that the BBC would dismiss me because of it? why would you choose black people or indian (etc) people over a white person? "diversity"? pure cosmetics. it means nothing. these characteristics are meaningless. so why would the BBC promote other races over white people when we're all equal anyway? who cares about colours?

    Your problem is that you seem to be in denial that institutional prejudices exist. You seem to believe that human society is made up of completely rational actors who behave in a completely reasonable manner, and this simply isn't the case.
    this isn't something I see as a reality, this is something I prescribe. I prescribe to you, for instance, that you are a rational actor because I respect you and afford you dignity. if I don't accept that you are a rational actor, I am affording you disrespect. I don't care if you are *actually* rational - I have to treat you as such because you are a human being with your own rights, desires and feelings. I am not going to throw asside your humanity simply because you, like all human beings, aren't perfect. if discrimination exists, because of that flawed nature, then surely that is because we live in a flawed world amongst superficial remedies like these? if you have a government say "you can't discriminate against x class" doesn't that completely undermine my humanity (as I am flawed)? I am not harming anybody by discriminating against them, and I will to have my own autonomy, so why should the government tell me how to behave when it is non-coercive? what else should the government do? force me not to tell white lies? or to exercise more? we're all flawed, right? but these flaws don't harm others or deprive them of their nautral rights and liberties, so why should the government step in? it's the same case with discrimination - I am not physically harming or coercing anybody merely by not hiring them as an employer, so why should a government intervene? is that honestly the appropriate role of the state? to protect people from discrimination, as opposed to violence? what even is the social contract here if that was actually a part of the government's job?

    It's a simple fact of psychology that people are more likely to accept others who they share characteristics with into their groups - what this means is that institutional inequality is self-perpetuating. Male-dominated careers will continue to be male-dominated (and female-dominated careers will continue to be female-dominated) and the same goes for other characteristics such as skin colour. Why would you discriminate against an intelligent person just because they're black? Because humans are not rational computers and have unconscious biases - this even extends to people who wouldn't consciously consider them to be racist or sexist. You can deny this as much as you want but irrational prejudices exist in society and these prejudices will remain unless positive action is taken against them. As a result, somebody interested in meritocracy like yourself should strongly support these measures.
    you don't seem, too, to appreciate that governmental discrimination is so bad because everybody pays taxes so the state should be just if it is going to take our money for whatever causes it intends to pursue. if I was a tax payer but lived in a society where the government segregated me, how is that justice? so if the government forces me to be institutionally lower than MEB individuals, how is that right? society, that entity that perpetuates discrimination, isn't something I have to pay taxes towards, and people within it are not obligated to treat me completely morally. so there's a difference between social discrimination and state discrimination because the state is actually an authority and a coercive actor - it coerces me to yield to its policies and its will or else I will be punished regardless of my desires. in society, this doesn't happen. that's why I'm more likely to tolerate discrimination in *society*, but not from the government. don't you accept that the government should be more moral than society because the state has more power and hence more responsibility? I as an individual have little responsibility merely as a citizen, so if I discriminate, then I am not doing much to change other people's realities or entitlement-procurements. if a prime minister acts to be immoral (i.e. bad laws or corruption), it effects everybody because we're all paying for it as tax payers. you might say "we are all a social entity as a society, collectively, so we are all responsible for discrimination" - but like I said, discrimination isn't something that I am paying for - it is an immorality that is not forcing me to uphold or support it like the state does. if somebody is discriminated against, then as an individual, surely they have the right to sin? if the government says "no, you do not have the right to sin" then that's surely a totalitarian government because in that kind of state there is no such thing as a private life because your private life and your moral/immoral acts are part of the state's business. so this is why I am against discrimination from the state in this sense - because the social contract isn't a totalitarian~ one. by totalitarian, I do not necessarily mean dictatorship, I mean a state that concerns itself with every aspect of a person's life, whether fully or partially.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    You are completely misrepresenting the theory of evolution through natural selection, there is absolutely no evidence that women are genetically hardwired to be less able at STEM careers than men. It's an argument that isn't supported by evidence. Saying something "sounds like it would make a lot more sense" isn't a substitute for evidence and when the evidence isn't there, that suggests that it actually doesn't make a lot of sense. The evidence strongly suggests that these pressures are societal rather than evolutionary, as is demonstrated by the fact that women perform "typically male" jobs just as well as men, that initiatives to encourage women into these careers are working, that girls are much more likely to choose "typically male" subjects when they are in single-sex schools, etc.
    I never said they were less able at these things.I said that in general they have less interest in it.Women can do whatever they want.There is nothing stopping them.We have had two conservative women prime ministers now,yet parliment is dominated by men.Why? Because women find politics boring is why.If they wanted to they could enter politics and rise to the very top.Yet they dont because they find it less interesting.You can see the difference in everyday life.Women find things interesting that men are less likely to and vice versa.Take a man shopping and he will generally be bored shitless.Take a women shopping and they enjoy it much more.It works the other way too.More Men enjoy watching football than women do.As I say there are exceptions,but in general its true.I t shouldn't have to be said that men and women have different interests.It is obvious.Just like our bodies are different,our minds are also different.
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    (Original post by JRKinder)
    Funnily enough, I don't see any campaigns to get more men into childcare.
    You're not looking very hard then

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-37552056
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    Why is homogeneity such a good thing?
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    (Original post by WBZ144)
    Most people are biased in one way or another, probably everyone is. So in a country that is already diverse, I guess that it's seen as important that everyone is represented. When a certain groups receives little to no representation, that could be a factor for other groups holding a negative bias towards them, as other groups may see them as less human or being of less value. People who say that they don't see race/religion/sexuality/gender and so forth are either lying or are very naive, naive enough to believe themselves to be telling the truth.
    I am not saying that discrimination doesn't exist. I am saying that diversity is not a matter of appropriate government policy because we to the state as individuals, not classes or social groups. if we're individuals and nothing more, then we are all formally equal. if we're social groups, then we're unequal in its eyes beacuse we have different entitlements and rights (i.e. BEM individuals require more state elevation). the government's proper role shouldn't be to force people to be moral - the government's role should be to stop people from being harmed, robbed or otherwise coerced, because that is something that is beyond our power to control concerning our will to live happily and without our own means. if we are discriminated against, then we are not being forced and we are not being harmed. by that, let me compare it to relationships: if I am a nice , funnyguy and somebody doesn't want to be my friend or doesn't want to date me, should the government force them to for the sake of justice? "no", right? so why in the sense of employment and other matters of essentially private property (as companies, like homes, are privately owned entities)? why should it force me not to discriminate against people regarding employment but not in terms of relationships? we all have freedom of association or dissociation, right? because we are free human beings in a free country, right? so why this contradiction? because people need jobs? it's not about "jobs", it's usually about "good/better jobs" for more money. but nobody has the right to have more money, just like they don't have the right to have all the friends they desire.
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    Reason#1: People from different cultural backgrounds, who have had significantly different experiences in life, may well be able to bring very different and relatively unique ideas to a whole variety of problems when searching for a solution. If we were all the same, we would far more rarely be challenged in our thinking. That doesn't mean that all ideas are right or helpful, but some inevitably are, and whether or not they are, they provoke our thoughts and ensure that we don't get permanently stuck on some static, unhelpful worldview.

    In the UK, for example, many immigrants from other backgrounds (not all, but many) are highly hard-working and intelligent individuals who can bring novel ideas to improve life, society and technology with them. There are also many highly hard-working, intelligent native Britons who can come up with equally brilliant ideas, but they may have fewer strengths in some areas where people of different cultural backgrounds have learnt and experienced more and developed greater strengths. And vice versa. For best effects, combine the two together Neither is bad by itself, but neither is it optimal.

    I can think of a whole lot of other reasons too; I'll come back and add those when I have more time.
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    (Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
    Why is homogeneity such a good thing?
    like I said in my opening post, homogeniety can be good because if we are all unitied by common good values like tolerance and a respect for other people and their equality, then diversity, causing a *lack* of those things, will make things worse. I am talking, specifically, with the case of religions there though vis-a-vis islam's active homophobia/intolerance. if I am talking about race, diversity is literally neither here nor there because race is meaningless. it makes things neither better nor worse. it is stupid, therefore, to *force* a society to be "more colourful"~ because it is coercive without a justifying cause. it's like forcing children to use differnet colour crayons in their colouring books to not offend the children whose favourite colours aren't being represented.
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    I don't believe it is. I absolutely despise diversity quotas, since they are so discriminatory, despite their intentions. It's hiring people on the merit of their race/sex, not on the merit of their ability. That is by definition racist/sexist. Therefore, they are accomplishing what they are trying to avoid. Deliberately diversifying groups/jobs/schools has good intentions, but is ultimately unfair and unnecessary. The first step to equality is realising that equality doesn't come from forcing quotas, but rather the treatment of specific individuals, and attempting to enforce diversity is a step backwards, as opposed as a step forwards.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    There is a difference. What you've got a problem with is the encouragement of multiculturalism and diversity in the first place and whilst I'd disagree with you there, this has little to do with diversity quotas. Diversity quotas are there because diversity exists and actual roles do not reflect said diversity, hence these quotas (or measures or whatever) are put in place to rectify the biases/discrimination that has caused that. These quotas are not there to influence societal demographics.
    If you've watched the BBC anytime recently, it over-represents ethnic minorities to a ridiculous degree, it tries to match the demographics of London rather than the UK collectively. This isn't a complaint about seeing ethnic minorities on the TV, it's not really an issue for me, but if you actually think that people who are non-White are not represented in the media or professional life, you must be psychotic.
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    (Original post by WBZ144)
    Most people are biased in one way or another, probably everyone is. So in a country that is already diverse, I guess that it's seen as important that everyone is represented. When a certain groups receives little to no representation, that could be a factor for other groups holding a negative bias towards them, as other groups may see them as less human or being of less value. People who say that they don't see race/religion/sexuality/gender and so forth are either lying or are very naive, naive enough to believe themselves to be telling the truth.
    The UK isn't diverse though. Major British cities are diverse, but the vast majority of this country is White British and I don't mind ether way as such, but actually if you look at any media outlet, White people are clearly underrepresented.
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    (Original post by zabveniye)
    Reason#1: People from different cultural backgrounds, who have had significantly different experiences in life, may well be able to bring very different and relatively unique ideas to a whole variety of problems when searching for a solution.
    example?
    also: if you are working at a company and the incentives within the structure of that institution are such that you are compelled to think of everything you can so that you can get money (or "more money"], why would they not think of ideas that BEMs would when they have the same education? if you're saying it's about different life experiences in the sense that they understand the ethnic community, how does that apply to, say, a bank? or a medical institution?how does knowledge of a muslim slum advance the cause of business here? I'm struggling to understand

    If we were all the same, we would far more rarely be challenged in our thinking. That doesn't mean that all ideas are right or helpful, but some inevitably are, and whether or not they are, they provoke our thoughts and ensure that we don't get permanently stuck on some static, unhelpful worldview.
    I didn't say "the same" - I used the word "diverse" in a particular context of social justice

    it's funny that you say that because in this society of positive discrimination and social justice we are kind of not allowed to have certain opinions, such as 'a will to not have totally open borders in europe'...so that point doesn't hold up because it's superficial. the kind of society that you're saying diversity advances is literally not the society we are currently living in which actually harbours diversity fairly actively

    In the UK, for example, many immigrants from other backgrounds (not all, but many) are highly hard-working and intelligent individuals who can bring novel ideas to improve life, society and technology with them.
    see, this is the thing - how far are you suggesting this is the case? also, surely if they're from an ethnic community outside of the mainstream, surely this will mean that they will be less likely to understand the concerns and expectations of the majority of their customers and consumers in their market (pretty much "normal white people"] - so you are trying to generalise in a good way but forgetting that this generalisation of immigrants can also be done in a bad way like I've suggested^...

    There are also many highly hard-working, intelligent native Britons who can come up with equally brilliant ideas, but they may have fewer strengths in some areas where people of different cultural backgrounds have learnt and experienced more and developed greater strengths. And vice versa. For best effects, combine the two together Neither is bad by itself, but neither is it optimal.
    surely if that was true, why wouldn't employers hire BEMs? surely they'd be acting irrationally to neglect necessary candidates for their companies? but if we live in a market oriented society where companies must act rationally to survive or else they will fail, how *would* a company be intentionally negatively discriminatory? it might have something to do with language barriers, cultural barriers that might actually have a substantial impact on that company; if they, for instance, didn't understand the customs of the mainstream society, they might be less capable of fitting into the company for the sake of fluidity and harmony, as opposed to being sand in the gears
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    Diversity for diversity's sake is relatively pointless. However, it is important for us to work for equity of opportunity in society, and that goes beyond the legal context (Equality Act, 2010 etc.) and into the broader context of our values and beliefs. For example, by law, it is illegal for a company to explicitly accept more men than women - on those grounds - into a job in the field of computing, yet the vast majority of people working in computing are men. It's not that women are barred from these jobs, but that many women don't seem themselves working in them.

    Why? Because they don't see many other women working in the field. When thinking of a computer programmer, you think of a man, because that's the predominant stereotype which you have seen and ingrained into your view of the world. Companies want the best people, and the best people are female as well as male, so it makes sense that they want to remove the unseen barrier which stops women from applying; that extrapolates to presenting themselves as more diverse, because by doing so they show potential female applicants that they too could work in that company and in that field.

    Examples like this are found everywhere. Oxford University have, in all of their videos on specific courses, at least one woman and at least one man. It's not necessarily that they're trying to be fully politically correct, rather that they're trying to show applicants that, regardless of their gender, the course could be right for them. It's about changing ingrained and subconscious views - very few people are explicitly sexist and more, and it's the more subtle - often unintentional - elements of sexism that need to be changed.

    The same is true for showing diversity in race, disability, religion, etc.; if you show people other people with whom they can identify, they have an affinity towards you. If 'you' happen to be a for-profit company, then 'you' can get those people to buy from you, thereby increasing your profits. It then becomes good business sense to increase diversity, and more objective than just a moral/societal obligation.
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    (Original post by MemeworksStudios)
    The UK isn't diverse though. Major British cities are diverse, but the vast majority of this country is White and I don't mind ether way as such, but actually if you look at any media outside, White people are clearly underrepresented.
    I may have misunderstood your comment but are you saying that White people are underrepresented in the media?

    If so then I disagree, and will tell you why.
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    (Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
    Why is homogeneity such a good thing?
    An homogeneous nation has a shared history, culture and set of values.

    That is why, for example, Hungary wants to remain one. We think they should emulate us and take in Muslim immigrants so as to become "diverse."

    Amazingly they disagree with over 98% voting against...
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    (Original post by WBZ144)
    I may have misunderstood your comment but are you saying that White people are underrepresented in the media?

    If so then I disagree, and will tell you why.
    I am saying that. I want to make clear, I am not arguing for quotas to get White people into the media, I have pride, maturity and frankly I don't care enough, but anyone who thinks that the media or big business is racist against ethnic minorities is a delusional moron.
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    (Original post by sleepysnooze)
    I am not saying that discrimination doesn't exist. I am saying that diversity is not a matter of appropriate government policy because we to the state as individuals, not classes or social groups. if we're individuals and nothing more, then we are all formally equal. if we're social groups, then we're unequal in its eyes beacuse we have different entitlements and rights (i.e. BEM individuals require more state elevation). the government's proper role shouldn't be to force people to be moral - the government's role should be to stop people from being harmed, robbed or otherwise coerced, because that is something that is beyond our power to control concerning our will to live happily and without our own means. if we are discriminated against, then we are not being forced and we are not being harmed. by that, let me compare it to relationships: if I am a nice , funnyguy and somebody doesn't want to be my friend or doesn't want to date me, should the government force them to for the sake of justice? "no", right? so why in the sense of employment and other matters of essentially private property (as companies, like homes, are privately owned entities)? why should it force me not to discriminate against people regarding employment but not in terms of relationships? we all have freedom of association or dissociation, right? because we are free human beings in a free country, right? so why this contradiction? because people need jobs? it's not about "jobs", it's usually about "good/better jobs" for more money. but nobody has the right to have more money, just like they don't have the right to have all the friends they desire.
    Relationships aren't recognised as a human right, not in this country or anywhere. We get to choose to do whatever we want in our private lives but in issues affecting the public we do not. So if you opt not to date certain races (for an example), that is your personal choice because no one is entitled to be in a relationship with anyone or be their friend. On the other hand, if you are the owner of a company then you have opened your services to the public and it is no longer a matter of your how you handle your own personal affairs. So if someone works hard for the opportunity to obtain the skills for a job that will afford him/her a certain lifestyle, then in a society where everyone has equal rights, that person should not be rejected on the basis of a characteristic which has nothing to do with his/her ability to get the job done.

    If that no longer becomes the case then a society cannot claim to afford everyone equal rights irrespective of their gender/race/religion/sexuality etc. It cannot claim to be a meritocracy either, if certain people are destined to remain at the bottom from birth due to one of these characteristics. Besides, it could be that the employer simply holds prejudicial views towards a certain group, making him/her believe that they are unable to do a good job regardless of their qualifications and skills, whereas hiring them and realising that they are competent could change their mindset and break the cycle.
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    (Original post by MemeworksStudios)
    I am saying that. I want to make clear, I am not arguing for quotas to get White people into the media, I have pride, maturity and frankly I don't care enough, but anyone who thinks that the media or big business is racist against ethnic minorities is a delusional moron.
    That doesn't seem to be an issue with big businesses and I think that the UK media generally does a good job with representation, I just don't understand why some people are against it.

    Hollywood is a different story, on the other hand but that's a separate matter.
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    (Original post by WBZ144)
    Relationships aren't recognised as a human right, not in this country or anywhere. We get to choose to do whatever we want in our private lives but in issues affecting the public we do not. So if you opt not to date certain races (for an example), that is your personal choice because no one is entitled to be in a relationship with anyone or be their friend. On the other hand, if you are the owner of a company then you have opened your services to the public and it is no longer a matter of your how you handle your own personal affairs. So if someone works hard for the opportunity to obtain the skills for a job that will afford him/her a certain lifestyle, then in a society where everyone has equal rights, that person should not be rejected on the basis of a characteristic which has nothing to do with his/her ability to get the job done.
    a private company is just that - private. it's part of the private sector, not public. so it isn't socially responsible. only the government is socially responsible. education, too, isn't a natural right - it is a state privilege. and it is purely a means to an end, not an entitlement

    If that no longer becomes the case then a society cannot claim to afford everyone equal rights irrespective of their gender/race/religion/sexuality etc. It cannot claim to be a meritocracy either, if certain people are destined to remain at the bottom from birth due to one of these characteristics.
    racial (positive) discrimination is literally the opposite of meritocracy though - at least if there is any discrimination in the private sector, it's not prevalant and deliberate like from the government

    Besides, it could be that the employer simply holds prejudicial views towards a certain group, making him/her believe that they are unable to do a good job regardless of their qualifications and skills, whereas hiring them and realising that they are competent could change their mindset and break the cycle.
    then why would you need a government telling people who to hire when they could learn this lesson themselves via liberty and not coercion...?
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    (Original post by WBZ144)
    That doesn't seem to be an issue with big businesses and I think that the UK media generally does a good job with representation, I just don't understand why some people are against it.
    I have no issue with ethnic minorities being represented, it's damn petty so take such an issue with that, but positive quotas if anything seems patronising.

    (Original post by WBZ144)
    Hollywood is a different story, on the other hand but that's a separate matter.
    I have mixed feelings on this, Black people are very well represented in Hollywood in terms of numbers, but it always seems to be a White lead and a Black side kick who gets killed at the end.
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    (Original post by PQ)
    You're not looking very hard then

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-37552056
    Yes I know about teaching, but I said childcare (or any other profession that is massively dominated by females). Teaching does typically have a majority of women, but a large number of men do still go into it so teaching isn't necessarily seen as a 'woman's job' only like some other industries are.
 
 
 
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