Monday, April 02, 2012
"Is Affirmative Action Still Necessary" Is NOT The Proper Question
With all due respect, Dr Watkins -
You are speaking to a "power relationship vacuum" yet you are forced to come to the meeting with your palm turned upward in the air, rather than to the side as a gesture as a handshake among equals.
The proper question is not "Is Affirmative Action Still Necessary".
The more accurate truth of today is "Are the HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT INSTITUTIONS that Black people matriculate through EFFECTIVE at delivering our people into the fold with the proper consciousness and preparation?"
It comes as no surprise, Dr Watkins that I am a critic of your antics. (I know that there are other authors that post content on your various media outlets).
What we have is a fundamental disrespect for the institutions of Black America. Those of you who seek short term advantage (congregational unity) at the expense of long term development advantage for our people are little troubled about what you do via the usurpation of our institutions.
You argue that the evidence of equality is the sight of more diversity within the ranks of corporations and governments.
I disagree with this as evidence.
You can't bring yourself to see that these corporations, for example are entities of power within themselves. Their mission is to deliver profit for the shareholders. I see more "brown skinned people" of Indian/Pakistani descent advancing into roles of power in the various customers that I engage with than there are "African-Americans". The rote claim that "skin color discrimination" is the source of the imbalance does not stand today.
My argument is that more "Black finalists" in the selection pool of "elite colleges", for example, will increase the odds that there will be more Blacks matriculating through to the businesses and law firms that pick from these exclusive sources.
I challenge those with the "Occupation spirit" to go after the lofty Wall Street brokerage and law firms that demand an Ivy League pedigree for their recruits, thus nullifying the advantage that these exclusive schools have.
Your Power Relationship Problem
Once again, Dr Watkins, you say "America had no problem taking away from minorities but it has a problem given back" (paraphrased).
If we look at the average "Mission Accomplished City" - the construction of a political power base has failed to retain or grow the girth of the economy in these places. We often hear that "blue collar jobs" that built up these cities have dried up. Yet when we focus on the type of jobs that are produced through these elite schools that you focus upon - the LOCAL SCHOOL SYSTEMS are failing to function as a feeder system.
We are prone to focus upon educational financing and/or disproportionate discipline.
We don't hear much about how the community of adults must be commissioned to provide the attention, funding and limits upon the student "specimens" - linking their success as the key to the community achieving its desired high standard of living.
You operate with a "social justice spirit" - demanding that America give "reparations on the cheap" - consider the history and hardship of the Negro candidate that comes before its admissions board and add value for the perceptions of oppression that he has suffered.
I make the case that Affirmative Action fails the PROPORTIONALITY FILTER.
It will only ever be focused on resources (schools and corporations) that cover but a small segment of the Black population - regardless of how prestigious it might seem.
It is the "Wide Middle" of Black America that benefits little from Affirmative Action.
Our community's fate would be improved more comprehensively with the addition of 100,000 Black graduates from mid-tier state schools (100K more than what we would have if there was not a new intensity of focus) who ultimately populate mid-level management and/or businesses within the Black community than we would if the elite schools graduated 10,000 new Black people with a pedigree that might lead them into the corporate CEOs office.
Back in 2008 I heard many Black parents planning to pattern their children's academic ascension based on "Obama". In truth it would be more wise if we merely focused on shifting the academic attainment of "the wide middle" - UP, two standard deviations this would have a far more comprehensive and enduring effect.
The main flaw of this plan is that it forgoes the external indictment that "Social Justice" relies on and expects this uplift to come from WITHIN THE INSTITUTIONS OF BLACK AMERICA.
Absent the respect and discipline encased within these institutions, Dr Watkins - this plan will never get off of the ground.
(You can do your part by not feeding us any more "Rick Santorum Called President Obama A 'Ninja'" stories on your blog.)