Tuesday, May 01, 2007

That's not what we meant by diversity

From the outside looking in, one would assume that college campuses are fairly diverse places. After all, white students, while they still appear in large numbers, are no longer the overbearing majority on the campuses. You can find both men and women in practically every classroom, and every major. And the number of international students grows every semester.

And yet, there are some saying that the issue of diversity hasn't really been corrected within the university system.

Yeah, we're a little confused, too. Apparently, the people who are having the issue believe that the initial reason to push for diversity was to correct racial injustices against African Americans. Now that the number of first- and second-generation black immigrants is growing, possibly even replacing some of the native African Americans from the schools, there are some who are complaining that diversity has failed.

Now, we were always of the perspective that diversity meant trying to bring together as many different perspectives as possible. That's why we would play games during our youth where GI Joe and the Transformers would team up, with assistance from the Masters of the Universe and My Little Pony to accomplish their goal. And the world would be a brighter place for it, especially when the wise Care Bear would impart to them their great message, and cause all of the toys to see the message in a new light. But now we can see that diversity means something far different and, perhaps, a little more sinister.

Apparently, to those who feel that American universities are failing to become more diverse, diversity only means that you accept more of their specific minority demographic in. The message that they seem to be driving home is that it only matters to black women if you open the door for more black women. The same holds true for Asian men, and German transsexuals. If you start allowing other minority groups in, possibly standing in the way of your own demographic, then diversity has failed, and you're simply helping to perpetuate racial injustices of past centuries.

Maybe we're a little off-base here, but, well, we've been known to eat tacos and bratwurst in the same day, polishing it off with a little beer before ending the night with some kung pao chicken. We may not actually have the best idea as to what diversity truly entails, but we're pretty sure that the more varied the perspectives and upbringing of a group, the higher the chances of intelligent discourse and conversation leading to new opinions. We never knew that diversity was a one-way street, only applying to specific groups trying to champion the cause.

Not that we're surprised. Racism tends to go the same direction. For proof of that, just ask the purple Smurfs. They know all about it.

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