General Question

walterallenhaxton's avatar

Should all antidescrimination laws be repealed immediately?

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19 Answers

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

interesting article, and I only skimmed it, but some of what I read makes sense. Repealing laws has its consequences, so people should step lightly in that direction. Dsicrimination in and of itself isn’t wrong, it’s discrimination for the wrong reasons, i.e. no black folks in the movie theatres back in the 50’s etc.

Interesting question, I’ll have to check back when I am not in a hurry to get to work.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra I do have some problems with the government discriminating. The cops have to. The courts have to. I don’t think that they have to with respect to government employment or access to government services.
If a business discriminates against potential customers it should live with the economic consequences.

ragingloli's avatar

should slavery be reinstated?

Harp's avatar

If the reasoning presented in the article were carried to its logical conclusion, it would be irrational for me to ever give a job to a black male. I don’t want a criminal in my employ, and black males are statistically more likely to commit a crime than a white or a female, therefore reason (and, according to the author, justice) would dictate that a black male should be the last person I’d want to hire.

Now imagine that this were the guiding principle according to which the whole society operated, and I think any rational person will see where that would lead. It would perpetuate—reinforce, even—the very same causal factors that create such differences in the first place. It would be like an Indian Brahman saying that it’s right not to have anything to do with an “Untouchable” because they’re poor and disease-ridden and uneducated…which is, of course, what keeps them in that condition.

Social policy has to be formulated with its eye on the future. Government often has to take us by the nose and lead us (sometimes kicking and screaming) into a better way of relating to each other. Had it not done so in the past, we’d still have slavery, segregation and no voting rights in the South, all justified on the same kind of “rational” grounds used by the author of this article.

augustlan's avatar

I could not have said that better than @Harp, so I will just applaud his answer.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

the article isn’t loading for me and I believe that this is the universe’s way of preserving this thread from my ‘irrational’ disgust at the assumptions drawn in the piece and your implications so let’s just leave it at that…and with what @peyton_farquhar said

marinelife's avatar

I am sure I have long maxed on my GAs for Harp. Very wise answer.

No, they should not. How could you read about the incident in Huntingdon Valley PA and think that they should?

CMaz's avatar

Yes, but not today. Maybe tomorrow.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@harp I don’t know where you got that in the article. I read every word of it and that would be a lack of descrimination. When you are going to employ a person they will offer far more information about themselves than you have available about the on the street. You would have to add that to your evaluative criteria. If you skipped over it and treated a man looking for work that way you would be failing to discriminate and be treating people with prejudice.
Prejudice is the opposite of discrimination.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@augustlan Why. Harp is turning discrimination into prejudice and it is the opposite of that. Discrimination is based on knowledge and prejudice is based on willful ignorance.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@ragingloli My posting of this question is part of my resistance to that. Slaves are created from men who lack critical thinking skills. Denying them the ability to discriminate in their thinking makes them more pliable. Discrimination and prejudice are very different things.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@Marina Did you read all of it? They could not handle all of those kids. Should they have let them be hurt because they did not have the people to watch them? What one person says does not make it club policy.

This is what you missed. “He also said invitations to two other day care centers, neither of which contained minority children, had previously been withdrawn.”

They were already turning large groups of kids away.
It was the fact of a lot of kids at once that determined club policy. Not color.

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir It is loading now. Are you being prejudiced or do you have a reason for not looking at it? I will accept your discrimination but not your prejudice.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@walterallenhaxton too tired now, maybe tomorrow

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Thank You. I am getting ready for bed too.

marinelife's avatar

@walterallenhaxton I don’t buy it. And neither does anyone else. If you had ever experienced Northeast Philly, you would not buy it either.

Harp's avatar

@walterallenhaxton Consider this example from the article:

“because these things tend to occur together, in the absence of having some more detailed information about a prospective passenger, the driver is correct to use the passenger’s race, sex, and age as factors in his decision. He is correct to conclude that picking up a young black man in his cab (as opposed to picking up someone else) will increase the probability that he will be a victim of assault or other criminal conduct. The rational cab driver knows this, and acts accordingly, avoiding fares that he thinks are high risk, based on those characteristics he is able to observe about his prospective passengers.”

“Prejudice” doesn’t have to involve a visceral dislike for this or that group. If you think that an individual is more (or less) likely to have a certain character or level of ability because he belongs to a certain demographic category, that is a prejudice, a pre-judging.

There may very well be statistics that indicate that there is a correlation between number of criminal convictions and a particular race. Acknowledging such a correlation doesn’t in itself constitute prejudice; this is useful information for diagnosing problems within society at large. But as soon as you look at an individual and feel that because of his race you know something about his propensities based on this correlation, that’s prejudice. There may be some subtle semantic difference between thinking “that guy is black, so there’s a good chance he’s a criminal” and thinking “I don’t like blacks because they’re a bunch of criminals”, but if both ways of thinking result in the black guy not getting the ride, then the result is the same. And it’s the result that counts on a societal level.

Going back to my employment example, you say that I can get a lot more information on which to base my decision, but until I get that information, the black guy starts off under the assumption that he’s more likely than a white guy to be a criminal. I’d then have to look for some evidence to the contrary to ease my fears. What questions would I ask this black man in front of me to determine whether he’s criminally inclined? I mean, all black male criminals have a first crime, right? So maybe this guy just hasn’t gotten started yet and is a ticking time bomb. Do I go by whether he’s “well-spoken” or has a “ghetto” inflection to his speech? What does that really tell me? No matter what I learn about him, the correlation between race and crime is still there, isn’t it?

walterallenhaxton's avatar

@Harp You control the environment of your workplace. You do it in a way to provide security for yourself and your employees. Your employees have an incentive to not act in a criminal manner. You are also a business man. The nature of your job is to take risks. You will make mistakes in who you hire. That is guaranteed. I think employers hire on the basis of they think/hope that the person can do the job and they like this particular employee the most. They can examine their paperwork for the first reason. The second on is subjective as are almost all decisions to buy something. Race is not really all that important. Of course if a person acts like a gang-banger then he will be a lot less likly to get the job. I hire anyone who says that they will work.

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