Letter to the Editor: Society’s obsession with diversity itself subtly racist
April 1, 2014 12:00 a.m.
In response to “Editorial: Crop of commencement speakers lacks diversity” in Opinion on March 10:
I am a 61-year-old white man, the sort that is often considered irrelevant and accused of being angered by the loss of privilege following social incursions of one or another previously oppressed groups. To allay any such considerations, I state for the record I have enough privilege to suit me, and no lack of money. I say what I say out of concern for our educational and other institutions.
I am old enough to remember when the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. stated that one day he hoped we would be judged by the content of our character, not the color of our skin. Our obsession with diversity has created a society in which the reverse of the reverend’s hopes have been achieved. We care less about an individual’s achievements, the new criteria being whether they are African American, Hispanic, LGBT, female, American Indian or some other protected group. I believe this obsession with diversity is actually subtly racist. It suggests that without special treatment by the great white father, no member of the protected classes could succeed. I don’t know about others, but I would feel greatly insulted. There’s two cents’ worth from an old white male.
Dr. Andrew Kindler
UC Berkeley alumnus