Thursday, March 25, 2021

Discrimination Today, Discrimination Tomorrow, Discrimination Forever?

Earlier this week, a quasi-crisis in the White House was averted when Illinois Democratic senator Tammy

Duckworth late Tuesday dropped a stern ultimatum she had made in the morning to White House senior officials: She no longer will withhold votes to confirm White nominees until Asian Americans are named to more high level positions in the Biden administration.

Early on Tuesday, Duckworth had tweeted "I am a no vote on the floor, on all non diversity nominees. You know, I will vote for racial minorities and I will vote for LGBTQ. But anybody else I'm not voting for."

"Senator Duckworth appreciates the Biden Administration's assurances that it will do much more to elevate AAPI voices and perspectives at the highest levels of government, including appointing an AAPI senior White House official to represent the community, secure the confirmation of AAPI appointments and advance policy proposals that are relevant and important to the community," Duckworth's communications director Ben Garmisa said in a statement Tuesday night.

"Accordingly, she will not stand in the way of President Biden's qualified nominees — which will include more AAPI leaders," he added.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday night in a statement, "The President has made it clear that his Administration will reflect the diversity of the country. That has always been, and remains our goal. The White House will add a senior level Asian American Pacific Islander liaison, who will ensure the community's voice is further represented and heard." 

This would have been bad enough if Duckworth had simply demanded more Asian-Americans. But she did not: instead it was "racial minorities" and "LGBTQ."  Straight white men and women need not apply. Neither should handicapped straight white individuals, an odd demand from an individual who in the Iraq war lost both her legs. Alas, bravery does not translate to common sense.

Fortunately, Duckworth backed down (or so it appears).  Nonetheless, before she did, two tweets were mostly accurate:

Actually, not definitionally racist. Duckworth never implied that she believed straight white individuals were inherently inferior, only that they should not be nominated because they are not "diverse."  Instead, she suggested that character, skill, integrity, and even the values brought to the position are irrelevant.

It at least appears President Biden did not capitulate. However, that freight train rolls on, and will roll on until someone inferring how individuals should be judged by how they come out of the womb is told to go suck an egg.  


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