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The Diversity Mystique
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The Diversity Mystique
The ultimate hype of political correctness.
Richard Koss, other titles
AUTHOR'S E-MAIL ADDRESS
|AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (47)
904 North (Poetry) A tale in verse form about a middle-aged musician/writer down on his luck and recently divorced (again) who moves into a high rise apartment on the ninth floor, which happens to be the same suite a yo... [1,479 words]
A New Perspective (Essays) A different perspective on the 911 tragedy and its aftermath. [614 words]
Are We There Yet? (Essays) An essay I never thought I'd have to write followed by a question I never thought I would have to ask. [1,013 words]
Asleep At Last (Poetry) A man in a hospital bed is having difficulty falling asleep, but he soon will... [152 words]
Bad Boy (Short Stories) A true story about a bad boy growing up in 1950. Was he just mischievous? Would his behavior be considered bad today? [2,844 words]
Charlie And Mrs. Miller (Short Stories) A very short story about an old woman on her death bed whose last request is to see an old friend, much to the surprise of her daughters and granddaughters. [585 words]
Deja Vu (Poetry) In times like these, pacifists come out of the woodwork. This poem was written in anticipation of what we can expect from them. [106 words]
Empty Closets (Poetry) A poem which no doubt, is controversial. I'm sure many will consider it homophobic, (a stupid word) but if liberals are sincere in their belief that everyone is entitled to free speech and opinions, t... [223 words]
Family Genes Considered (Short Stories) A story that is unfortunately, much closer to the truth than not. Although the main character is fictional, the relatives described are quite real, which gives me reason to often ponder my own destin... [1,198 words]
Fatal Perception (Short Stories) An off-beat tale about an aging song writer who perceives he is being stalked by a strange little man. [2,959 words]
Goodbye America (Essays) An essay written by an aging writer who no longer understands the country in which he lives. [662 words]
Hooked (Short Stories) A short short story originally started as a poem, about a man's obsession with a special kind of woman. (Revised June 2001) [323 words] [Fantasy]
How To Fool Most Of The People Most Of The Time (Essays) An essay commenting on the recent election results. [1,530 words]
Know It? - I Wrote It (Short Stories) This is a funny, perhaps silly, outrageous story. I'm not sure of its exact origin, but I must forewarn you. I don't generally make use of extreme vulgarity or profanity in my writing, but in this c... [663 words]
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Madelaine (Short Stories) An eerie tale set in the modern day Pacific Northwest about a family's nightmarish encounter with a character from a legend with a darkside. [8,451 words]
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Muriel's Funeral (Short Stories) Imagine yourself dead and observing your own funeral What would you expect to see? You might be surprised. [736 words]
My Three Loves (Poetry) A poem about the three things in life that keep a man going. (At least from one man's perspective.) [101 words]
My Wife Is Missing (Poetry) A poem (well sort of a poem) which raises the question of who is most dear to us. [117 words] [Relationships]
Nostalgic On A Bridge To Nowhere (Poetry) A nostalgic view of the life of a man in his twilight years. [369 words]
Over A Hundred Years Later Nothing New About Progressives (Essays) An essay revealing the fact that progressives haven't progressed much in over a hundred years. [1,317 words]
Please Read My Poem - Again (Poetry) The inspiration for this poem came to me after reading several poems (good and bad) posted on Storymania, as well as their reviews. The poem is directed primarily at the very young, talented writers w... [195 words]
Raindrops (Short Stories) Ever think twice about shopping alone at night. You should - especially if you're a pretty woman. [1,469 words]
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Save The Planet – More Fiction Than Fact (Essays) An essay. [1,537 words]
Shirley's Angel (Short Stories) A Christmas story: In the final analysis, we may discover that we love someone because of their vulnerability, rather than in spite of it. [2,228 words]
Still Unsolved (Short Stories) A successful mystery writer returns to his old home town and recalls an unsolved mystery he never wrote about. [2,136 words]
Symbolism Over Substance – The Liberal Manifesto (Essays) A non-fiction essay about liberal ideology and its influence on today's U.S. and world culture. [1,229 words]
The Absolution Of Margaret (Short Stories) A story about life in the confessional booth of a Catholic church. [549 words]
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The Girl In The Taxi (Short Stories) A shy, young man has an erotic encounter with a strange girl. Is it real or just a dream? [1,493 words] [Erotic]
The Incurable Cynic (Poetry) A man reflects upon his life of cynicism. [143 words]
The Perfect Ending (Short Stories) A tale about a wanna-be writer trying to create a story with the perfect ending. With unsuspecting help from his wife, he succeds, but pays the ultimate price. [642 words]
The Price Of Freedom (2) (Short Stories) A short story. [396 words]
The Rhyme Of Eternal Triangles (Poetry) A poem that describes in a silly, funny way, the futility of wanting someone who doesn't want you. [223 words]
The Song That Failed (Short Stories) A somewhat dubious account of an amateur song writer's ill-fated chance at success. [156 words] [Humor]
The Waitress Fom Hell (Short Stories) The story of a patron's ongoing feud with an over-the-hill waitress. [750 words]
Think Before You Write (Essays) My observations, after reading the work of many aspiring young writers, prompted me to write this. It merely offers some common sense advice to any aspiring writer (including myself) and should not b... [988 words]
Tomorrow's Here (Poetry) The recent death of a friend inspired me to write a poem, which salutes this somewhat hapless, but likeable character. [114 words]
Victims (Poetry) A satirical poem that tells it like it is. The poem confronts a disturbing trend in our society - transferring blame to others instead of placing it squarely where it belongs. [255 words]
What A Pair (Ex-Husbands And Old Shoes) (Poetry) A symbolic poem comparing ex-husbands and old shoes. Some women divorce their husbands, expecting to find something better, only to realize eventually, that the grass is not always greener. [326 words]
What’S Wrong With Assimilation? (Essays) This essay was originally written in 2006 when the Senate was considering an Immigration reform bill, which of course, was not passed. [453 words]
While The Iron's Hot (Short Stories) The story of a woman, a victim of spousal abuse, and her solution to the problem. [774 words] [Relationships]
Wisdom - Lost With Tradition (Essays) An essay which compares the concept of traditional wisdom with the minds of today's intellectual elitists. [500 words]
The Diversity Mystique
I no longer get angry with people who insist on jamming political correctness down my throat. I’ve found ways to ignore them.
Now I just get nauseated listening to the network news readers and morning show primadonnas tormenting us with their buzz words like “surreal” and remember (during the days of the Bush/Gore campaigns) - “gravitas.” But of all the words, phrases, and clichés emerging from the bowels of politically correct vocabulary, I’m really tired of hearing about “diversity.”
Our country was often described as a “melting pot,” with obvious reference to the varying nationalities of its immigrants and their assimilation into a nation of people with common ideals, goals, and yes, even a common language.
Immigration laws were changed in the fifties and sixties and it became easier for foreigners to come here as long as they had a relative who was a citizen or they were able to claim refugee or political asylum status. Societal pressure to learn to speak, read, and write in English was gradually relaxed. In fact, just about every attempt to make English our national language was defeated and today, most states provide public services in both the English and Spanish formats.
As the civil rights legislation of the sixties began to grow teeth and the affirmative action
policies of the seventies opened doors even further, “assimilation” became an archaic societal goal and terms like “typical” American quickly disappeared from our vernacular. Political correctness, though not yet defined as such, began its manifestation through legislation, but most notably, through the media, and in the vocabulary and textbooks used in our public educational system.
United States immigrants were probably more assimilated in 1904 than they are today. In 1904, 37% of immigrants were here temporarily and eventually returned to their homeland. Today only 15% of our immigrants return to their place of origin. Instead of an American culture expanded through an assimilation of people, we now have people of diverse cultures and nationalities (hyphenated-Americans), living among us in a state of quasi-integration We make no demands of national allegiance from these people, and in fact, encourage them to maintain their cultural language and customs while living here.
Somehow, we are made to believe that it doesn’t get any better than this. The more diverse a country, an organization, a company, a political cabinet – the better it is for everybody. A majority of anything is BAD. Diversity is GOOD – something so desirable that political parties, television networks, corporations, universities, and governments virtually fall over themselves trying to achieve it.
The truth is that diversity guarantees nothing but diversity itself. Outside of that, the most likely result guaranteed by diversity is mediocrity. If you are interested in finding the best qualified candidate based upon the merits of education, past performance, and the potential for achievement, you probably won’t find that person if diversity is your primary objective. We have become intimidated, once again, through the magic of political correctness, into believing that diversity, by itself, is an attribute. Conversely, the absence of diversity within an organization, cabinet, or committee is more often than not, considered a sign that discrimination or insensitivity is at work.
The truth about the diversity mystique is concealed by noble sounding, albeit empty rhetoric, just as the elitist authors of such rhetoric attempt to conceal their condescending attitudes, pretending they alone, are unique in their ability to respect, understand, and appreciate those who are most different from us.
In the seventies, the definition of minority categories was expanded to include economic status, gender, physical or mental disability, and sexual preference, giving an even broader meaning to the word, “diversity.”
I’ve always believed that everyone should be entitled to tolerance, acceptance, and respect . Today, in this era, influenced by members of a pop culture, that attitude is not good enough. We are told we should not only tolerate and respect the differences of others, we should also “celebrate” these differences. I’m sorry - I can handle tolerance, respect, and even acceptance for the most part, but I’ll pass on the celebration bit..
I send Chanukah cards to my Jewish friends and clients and they send me Christmas cards. I refuse to attend another bloody Bris and I don’t go to Temple - but you won’t see them at midnight Mass either. I wouldn’t want my son to drop an English literature course and take Spanish just because he has a friend named Julio. And it’s unlikely that you’ll see me anywhere remotely near a gay pride parade.
Diversity has become a symbol of the ultimate solution; a panacea to cleanse society of its social ills; a litmus test to weed out bigots and racists. It’s certainly an effective CYA maneuver. No matter how poorly someone performs or fails to live up to expectations, it’s unlikely their being chosen will fall under criticism, as long as their presence helps to establish or improve diversity.
Last week I had a year-end meeting with an old client named Roger. He proudly beamed that his company of twenty three people was now totally politically correct. He had recently hired two new employees - a Black man and a Caucasian lesbian.
The first thing I said was, “how did you find out she’s a lesbian?”
“She just blurted it out at our first interview. Said she didn’t want to work here under false pretenses and thought it best to be up front with it.”
“Was she the best candidate for the job?” I assumed there were several applicants.
“ I never got a chance to talk to them. Steve, our human resources guy, said we’d better hire her after that disclosure because if we didn’t, she might file some kind of a discrimination suit in the future.”
“That doesn’t sound like appropriate legal advice. Is Steve an attorney?”
“No. But anyway, we’ve got a chance for some government contracts and I know they’ll want us to show diversity in our hiring practices before they accept any bids.”
Roger then showed me a brochure of a an upcoming seminar for employers, management personnel, and other professionals. One of the highlighted topics was entitled, “DIVERSITY, a badge every American employer can be proud to wear.”
“You want to go to this with me, Dick?”
Glancing quickly at the date on the brochure, I replied, “Gee thanks Roger, but I’ll be in LasVegas on the 9th of February.”
After Roger left, I thought to myself. Maybe a February trip to Vegas is not such a bad idea, after all.
|READER'S REVIEWS (6)
DISCLAIMER: STORYMANIA DOES NOT PROVIDE AND IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR REVIEWS. ALL REVIEWS ARE PROVIDED BY NON-ASSOCIATED VISITORS, REGARDLESS OF THE WAY THEY CALL THEMSELVES.
"I am amazed that noone has reviewed, or at least commented on this yet. I'm only going to touch on two things as this could turn into a massive debate. Firstly, of course we must celebrate the cultures of others, not necessarily participate, but certainly celebrate the fact that they exist. Tolerance is NOT enough. Tolerating something implies a basic dislike of it, but allowing it nonetheless. Nobody is juvenile enough to suggest that you must read the Koran because you work with Muslims, or anything of the sort, let alone go to mass if you are Jewish or visit the temple if you are not etc. And you know that. This really was a rather puerile comment to make. Secondly, I was absolutely dumstruck at your comments regarding "assimilation" and no effort being made to assimilate immigrants into American society. Have you any idea whatsoever how nazi that idea is? Fine, no need to be politically correct, I'm not. But you are using political correctness and the fact that it is unchic at the moment to camouflage your obvious bigotry. Irish people now speak English due to assimilation. The holocaust was due to assimilation, or rather, destruction in order to eradicate those that would not be assimilated. Sure, immigrants come to your country. So what. They are NOT Americans. And all this stuff about the authors of such rhetoric being the only ones able to understand etc "those most different from us". "Those most different from us"?? My God, Richard, where do you think racism breeds? In just such comments. Yes, we are different. No, we do not always understand each other. Yes, this is OK. No, assimilation into the culture of the nation you live in an "allegiance" to that nation are not an answer. No answer is necessary. I'm sorry Richard, but at a guess I'd say that you are a middle aged/ageing man (I'm not about o get all personal or anything) and your ideals and comments stink of it. While believing in your own righteousness, you are sheltered in your Americanism, and out of touch with today's ideals. You want assimilation? Then...get with it! Please do not teach your children such things...please. Read any manifesto of any right wing party and you will find most of your above arguments. I don't think you are really a racist. I do think you are ignorant. I do think you are out of touch. Like I said I'm not one for political correctness. But you seem to have confused a thin-skinned dictionary of euphemisms and frightened hiring techniques with out and out racism. Which you do display. My last question. Why not speak another language in America. Why should English, and not French, German, Spanish, Sioux, Cree, Chinese be the first language. In a Country like yours, which, except for the Native Americans are ALL immigrants in some way, why do you need a single "first" language at all...outside of pure practicality. So that the white elite can stay that way. So that you remain in control. It is very, very easy to speak like you do from your position. White, Christian, middle class (I’d say). Just like those in power. " -- James, Dublin, Ireland.
"James, your comments only reinforce my disgust with the "liberal," politically correct,thinking of so many arrogant and stupid people like yourself. First of all, like a true liberal, you did not address your critique to the theme of my essay, which was, the ridiculous and illogical extremes to which political correctness has taken us. Instead, you used this review privelege to expound on your corny, clicheted, views drenched in liberalism, to aggrandize yourself, and make everyone aware that you are so elite and intellectual in your thinking, unlike an elder, washed up, out of it, bigot like myself. You make up your own definitions of English words, and pre-judge me as an individual without ever having met me. You are the epitomy of hypocrisy, but this is also true of most liberals. I doubt if you ever had a real job and probably are on the dole or a school teacher, which is pretty much the same thing. You live in a country that has been fucked up economically and politically for years and I suppose you blame elite white English people for that as well. I could suggest you "get a life" but you probably won't live long enough for it to matter." -- Richard.
"Richard, You did good. There is no way to argue with a liberal because they can't debate facts and logic. Jim from Dublin, like many Western nationals, whose own countries are screwed up from socialism and out of control immigration, like to stick their noses in our business and tell us we should be like them. Our founding fathers wrote the Constitution in English and that is our basic language. Prior to the last two decades, immigrants coming to this country were expected to assimilate and learn to speak English. This country's liberal elite who think diversity is the answer to everyone's prayers, have tried to change that. You're right, diversity is a politically correct myth that actually inhibits the achievement of excellence. " -- Uncle Sam.
"James, pearls before swine! How could you every think you can bring light into a dark room with no outlet, light switch and a powerful wind og ignorance ready to blow out any lit candle or match.... but at least you tried...." -- Liberal .
"Liberal asshole once again haunts my domain. Please learn to write and spell before you post you convoluted comments and logic. You have no fucking clue about the realities of life and like a lonely leftist without a job and not much of a life, you fall back on some Marxist essay you once read to reinforce what you perceive to be intellectual and progressive thinking. You will die and noone will care or remember you, which equates to no loss at all. You probably still live with your parents, that is, if you know who they are. " -- Richard.
"I have had many arguments with liberals who share the views of James from Dublin. Typically, they are naive, small minded people who have deluded themselves with an elitist sense of understanding and knowledge. They all read the same Marxist and socialist drivel and are drawn to this ideology because they have most likely failed at every capitalistic or entrepreneurial endeavor, including holding a real job. As usual, they attack without understanding or listening because they are incapable of objective thought. Saying that you can read most of your arguments in any right wing manifesto prompts me to ask where his arguments come from. Also, his comment that having a common language only serves practicality, is probably the best reason for it. It's common sense, so he obviously could never accept this reasoning. A belief in God and common sense are concepts totally repulsive to liberals like James from Dublin. The biggest inconsistency within the liberal philosphy is this: "How can you profess to love all mankind without a belief in God and a love for Him?" " -- A conservative scholar.
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© 2001 Richard Koss
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