Thursday, January 19, 2023

Diversity Thursdsay

Do I ever tire of DivThu? Yes, every Thursday I tire of it ... but we've been at it so long, why not?

Do I get tired of the topic? Well, sure. Heck, almost 13-years ago I tired of seeing higher education organizations - always claiming poverty - spending millions of dollars a year, especially at the service academies, doing nothing but promoting the division of young men and woman on the basis of race and ethnicity.

...but ... especially in the last few years, there has been a wonderfully blossoming of the understanding of this cancer in higher education that bleeds out in to the general culture.

That glimmer of hope and the fact that we seem to be getting traction is, really, why I keep going here.

To really start to turn to a 21st Century construct of race relations - something that is becoming more and more needed as we have many more mixed race citizens - we need leaders. Serious leaders with a record of success is the one thing that has been missing. Leaders who understand how to use power and influence to effect change through access to the levers of power. That is how the diversity industry got where they are today, and that is the only way you are going to excise them from their bastions.

We now have open advocates in the House of Representatives and the Senate ... but not yet the majority. They are growing in number and influence. What was once only whispered is now openly called out.

The Supreme Court - even at its slow pace - is really ahead of everyone in this area, as I believe we will see further proof soon with the upcoming ruling against Harvard and UNC almost a decade in the making.

To really take action to the next level towards a better, more unified nation, we need help in the Executive Branch. 

It won't take much, but it does take vision and courage. 

What do I mean by "much?" Simple. The best things usually are simple. We just need a leader willing to say, "No." Refusing to let there be any more discrimination and division based in immutable characteristics.

To do the right thing;

Governor Ron DeSantis can ask Florida public universities for information on their spending on critical race theory and “diversity, equity, and inclusion,” a federal judge ruled recently.


The requested data includes detailing how the campus programs involve CRT and DEI and the number of employees allocated to them, as previously reported by The Fix.

Follow. The. Money.

If you didn't already, look at the "13-years" link above. It was millions of dollars at USNA alone then, it has to be much more now. I would offer that those asking for metrics need to be careful, as was shown recently, the diversity industry will try to hide what they are doing. 

You have to look not just at the full time and part time nomenklatura, you need to look at "targeted recruiting," travel, and hosting expenses for racialist speakers, panels, and affinity group activities. That is where you are going to find the real expenditure of money. 

You also need to interview faculty under Chatham House rules. From PhD students to professors at civilian and military schools of higher education, I continue to almost daily get reports - most on background not for attribution or sharing - on what is going on. They are in some combination horrified at what is being done, disgusted with what they are participated in, and terrified that they will be seen as not "onboard" with this cult of division.

It's a racket - and a counterproductive one at that. Forget the morally reprehensible insistence that people self-segregate based on self-identified sectarian divisions, even ignore preferential treatment or punishment based on same ... no ... just look at the fact that as what Rod Dreher points out,  what even the well-meaning are doing is counterproductive;

Over the years, social scientists who have conducted careful reviews of the evidence base for diversity trainings have frequently come to discouraging conclusions. Though diversity trainings have been around in one form or another since at least the 1960s, few of them are ever subjected to rigorous evaluation, and those that are mostly appear to have little or no positive long-term effects. The lack of evidence is “disappointing,” wrote Elizabeth Levy Paluck of Princeton and her co-authors in a 2021 Annual Review of Psychology article, “considering the frequency with which calls for diversity training emerge in the wake of widely publicized instances of discriminatory conduct.”

Dr. Paluck’s team found just two large experimental studies in the previous decade that attempted to evaluate the effects of diversity trainings and met basic quality benchmarks. Other researchers have been similarly unimpressed. “We have been speaking to employers about this research for more than a decade,” wrote the sociologists Frank Dobbin and Alexandra Kalev in 2018, “with the message that diversity training is likely the most expensive, and least effective, diversity program around.” (To be fair, not all of these critiques apply as sharply to voluntary diversity trainings.)

If diversity trainings have no impact whatsoever, that would mean that perhaps billions of dollars are being wasted annually in the United States on these efforts. But there’s a darker possibility: Some diversity initiatives might actually worsen the D.E.I. climates of the organizations that pay for them.

That’s partly because any psychological intervention may turn out to do more harm than good. The late psychologist Scott Lilienfeld made this point in an influential 2007 article where he argued that certain interventions — including ones geared at fighting youth substance use, youth delinquency and PTSD — likely fell into that category. In the case of D.E.I., Dr. Dobbin and Dr. Kalev warn that diversity trainings that are mandatory, or that threaten dominant groups’ sense of belonging or make them feel blamed, may elicit negative backlash or exacerbate pre-existing biases.

Many popular contemporary D.E.I. approaches meet these criteria. They often seem geared more toward sparking a revolutionary re-understanding of race relations than solving organizations’ specific problems. And they often blame white people — or their culture — for harming people of color. For example, the activist Tema Okun’s work cites concepts like “objectivity” and “worship of the written word” as characteristics of “white supremacy culture.” Robin DiAngelo’s “white fragility” trainings are intentionally designed to make white participants uncomfortable. And microaggression trainings are based on an area of academic literature that claims, without quality evidence, that common utterances like “America is a melting pot” harm the mental health of people of color. Many of these trainings run counter to the views of most Americans — of any color — on race and equality. And they’re generating exactly the sort of backlash that research predicts.

If you think the worse of what we are seeing in academia isn't at the US Naval Academy, West Point, USAFA, or USCGA - well then you either have not been a loyal reader of DivThu for the last 18-years or so, or you live in willful disbelief.

If you don't think it isn't elbow-deep in to the military ... well ... I'm not sure how far it will take to get you our of your denial.

Again, we will have to wait for the right chief executive, but there is no reason the ground cannot be prepared by Congress.

If Republican really care to act instead of signal, then there are simple things to do. Like Governor DeSantis has done in Florida, they can effect change at our service academies. They need to ask ... no belay my last ... demand that the service academies answer the same question about funding. Be both broad and very specific on the request and audit the answer you get. Salaries, BA/NMP, collateral duty, travel, speakers, panels, consultants, seminars, affinity groups based on DEI's usually subject areas, all of it.

...and interview, in private, the active duty and civilian instructors who are there. 

No one said doing the right thing is easy.

Make sure and come back next week where we will be reviewing some of the nasty-bits in the "Academic Year 2021-22 Institutional Effectiveness Assessment Report" from the US Naval Academy.

Yes, it is about as bad as you think.

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