January 6, 2006

Diversity Doings at the U. of Washington

The UW faculty newspaper reports:

Starting this quarter, students will be able to work toward a minor in diversity at the UW. By taking one foundational course and a number of electives offered in a variety of departments, students in any major can earn a minor in this interdisciplinary program....

There are six foundation courses. This quarter, two of them -- Introduction to Women Studies (Women 200) and People of the USA (History 105) will be offered. Other foundation courses include: Introduction to American Ethnic Groups (AES 151), Religion, Identity and Cultural Pluralism (Anthropology 330), Introduction to Disability Studies (LSJ/CHID 332), and Racism and Minority Groups (Psychology 250). An additional history course and a communication course are being developed as foundation courses.

"The foundation course is to expose the student to the baseline issues with regard to diversity -- which is about the study of social categorization and power," Bonus said...

"I would expect students who earn this minor to get a basic knowledge of how to approach diversity," White said. "I also would expect students to be able -- with the minor on their transcript--to use that in their field. That's good in the workforce, wherever you are."

Sure, it is. What employer in the private sector wouldn't want to hire somebody who minored in diversity? The only thing you would have to worry about is losing out to a job applicant who majored in Diversity.

Seriously, rather than take all these classes in order to put "Minored in Diversity" on your resume, wouldn't it be faster and just as effective to merely write on your job application: "If I get the job, it's almost certain that I'll eventually sue you for discrimination"?

[Although judging by the ads appearing on this page, there are quite a few jobs available for Diversity majors with "diversity workshop trainers" and the like, firms hired by big companies to lecture their poor employees in order to show the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission they tolerate no Crimethink.]

[Anyway, please don't click on ads you have no interest in just to have Google send some pennies my way -- Google gets mad and can cancel my account. (How could they know you are aren't really interested? Of course they know. They're Google.) But, if you do see an ad for something that looks worth clicking on, please click on it.]

Meanwhile, the alumni magazine reports on how the university is subsidizing racial resentment:

James J. Hill, the “Empire Builder,” glowers from atop his pedestal outside More Hall. Across the street, Jaebadiah Gardner, ’05, a 22-year-old of African and Mexican descent, glowers back at him.

“He looks like a plantation owner,” Gardner says.

In fact, Hill was a Minnesotan and a devoted Unionist, and his Great Northern Railroad helped put Seattle on the map in the late 19th century. But he was also an old-fashioned, tight-fisted tycoon. His Northern Securities Company was an early target of Teddy Roosevelt’s trust-busting efforts, and his labor practices were typical of his time—pay immigrants the lowest possible rate for the most punishing work.

How benighted! Thank God things are different in the 21st Century! Oh, wait, I forgot, progressives are now in favor of importing uneducated foreigners "to do the jobs Americans just won't do." Never mind ...

The bronze bust looks to be about three times as large as an actual human head and shoulders, and the whole statue, pedestal included, is as tall as a person with a head that big would be. “He’s elevated,” Gardner says, strolling off down Stevens Way. “We’re being told to admire him.”

It’s not so much the presence of such statues on the UW campus that bothers Gardner. It’s their ubiquity, which, he feels, comes at the expense of more diverse artwork and contributes to a sense of invisibility among students of color.

Damn white guys just accomplished too much.

“It’s a struggle, going to class every day,” he says. “Nobody looks like you. You’re talking about European history. You’re talking, basically, about everything that’s not you.” Gardner is a builder, too, but not of empires. On the median that divides the walkway between Mary Gates Hall and Suzzallo Library, there’s a new public monument to diversity. It’s also a monument to the dedication of Gardner and his good friend Sumona Das Gupta, who spent more than a year getting the administration’s attention, getting a special design-build class created, getting the money, getting the site and getting the thing made.

Entitled “Blocked Out,” it, too, has a pedestal. But this one is unoccupied—a granite block with bare footprints carved on top. ... Under a nearby cedar tree, a plaque reads “BLOCKED OUT—Dedicated to those who are excluded from the house they were exploited to create.”...

Gardner recalls several of his friends from freshman year decamping for other schools after only a quarter or two. “I’m telling them, ‘Hang in there,’ ” he says, starting up the path between Drumheller Fountain and “Red Square.” “And they’re like, ‘No, man, you hang in there.’"

He stops in the middle of the square and gestures toward Suzzallo’s imposing fa├žade, with its 18 terra-cotta figures standing saint-like in their niches: Plato, Gutenberg, Shakespeare, Benjamin Franklin. “All men,” Gardner says. “Virtually all European. All people who have been canonized within academia. The style is very Gothic, which is cool, but when it’s everywhere… And this is what everybody sees when they come to campus for the first time. Every tour stops in front of Suzzallo —‘Here it is. What do you think?’ And I think, ‘I’m not in here. Or my family, or my friends.’ ”

Here's the full list of the 18 Dead White European Males whose statues in the University's "Red Square" are so oppressive to young Jaebadiah Gardner's self-esteem, along with their "eminence scores" in various arts and sciences (but not law or economics), as objectively calculated in Charles Murray's Human Accomplishment, on a scale where 100 is the greatest figure in the history of the field:

Moses (Murray doesn't rank Law or Religion)
Louis Pasteur
(Medicine 100, Combined Sciences 46)
Dante Alighieri (Western Literature 62)
Shakespeare (Western Literature 100)
Plato (Western Philosophy 87)
Benjamin Franklin (Technology 32, Physics 21, Western Literature 4)
Justinian I (Law)
Isaac Newton
(Combined Sciences 100, Physics 100, Mathematics 89)
Leonardo da Vinci (Western Art 61, Technology 58, Biology 34, Physics 13)
Galileo Galilei (Combined Sciences 89, Astronomy 100, Physics 83, Technology 18)
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (Western Literature 81, Biology 18)
Herodotus (Western Literature 15)
Adam Smith (Economics isn't ranked)
(Western Literature 54)
Johann Gutenberg (Technology 23)
Ludwig van Beethoven (Western Music 100)
Charles Darwin (Biology 100, Combined Sciences 37)
Hugo Grotius (Law)

If Jaebadiah Grant was less ignorant and more aware of the scale of these men's accomplishments, he'd probably be even more peeved by them.

Alumnus Anthony Williams wrote in a letter to the editor:

If nothing else, your article on the concrete block with footprints now adorning the UW campus certainly demonstrated the quality of art produced by a committee. ... While our so very earnest students are learning to design and place a concrete block, the extremely selective schools of science and technology in China and India are turning out hundreds of thousands of graduates, who probably never considered whether their campus was “welcoming” or not. Those institutions are selecting for excellence, not diversity. Tick, tick, tick, tick ...

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

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