The Instigator
beem0r
Pro (for)
Winning
28 Points
The Contender
Tatarize
Con (against)
Losing
22 Points

2a. Affirmative Action

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/2/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,383 times Debate No: 5603
Debate Rounds (1)
Comments (2)
Votes (8)

 

beem0r

Pro

Affirmative action can be defined as helping disadvantaged groups of people to gain education and jobs.

Now I know what most of you are thinking. You are probably thinking that this is some sort of 'reverse racism.' Forget these preconceived notions. That's one of my rules.

Now then, let me first address the most common argument against affirmative action. Affirmative action is viewed as some government-imposed anomaly that is not present in a free society. Fortunately, this is not further from the truth. An extremely large part of affirmative action takes place in the form of private entities giving out scholarships that target generally disadvantaged racial groups. Though my opponent will try to convince you otherwise, there is nothing wrong with this. A private entity should be able to give scholarships to anyone they want based on any criteria. Just as an employer should be able to hire anyone they want. However, this brings me to the other major part of affirmative action.

Many employers try to hire a larger portion of disadvantaged racial groups than one might expect. This is for many reasons, including diversity [or at least a guise of diversity]. There is nothing wrong with this. Employers should have the right to hire whoever they want, as long as they do not step on the rights guaranteed to us, the individuals. We don't have some fundamental right to be hired just because we're as educated and experienced as the guy they actually hired. The company can hire based on whatever reasons they want - they could hire us for having good education and experience, they could hire us because we're a guy they'd like to have a beer with, they could hire us because we're of a racial group that would increase diversity in the company, or whatever other reasons they want.

Trying to stop these things is ridiculous. Stoping affirmative action means limiting the rights of entities to make decisions that should be protected. A company should not be required to hire only the most educated and experienced candidates. They should have the power to choose who they hire. Specialized scholarships should be able to target whatever group they want, be it women, minorities, poor people, people with beards, or even majority groups like men or whites.

I am in support of affirmative action in the same sense that I am in favor of any entity doing anything that does not infringe on other people's rights. There is no need to abridge the freedoms of these entities. But perhaps my opponent can show us otherwise.
Tatarize

Con

http://en.wikipedia.org...
"The term affirmative action describes many policies aimed at a historically socio-politically non-dominant group (typically, minority men or women of all racial groups) intended to promote its access to education or employment. Motivation for affirmative action is a desire to redress negative effects of actual or perceived, past or current discrimination that is regarded as unfair by relevant legislative bodies. It also serves to encourage public institutions such as universities, hospitals and police forces to be more representative of the populations they serve."

My opponent wishes you to believe that affirmative action is not a warped kind of reverse racism because he know that that is exactly what it is and will certainly lead to his defeat. He then has the audacity to suggest that Affirmative Action is empowered businesses that wanted to add diversity to their workforce. What? Empowering? Affirmative action means that the less qualified person gets hired just because he or she is part of a minority group. That rather than allowing businesses to be left alone they require them to hire certain people because of the color of their skin. If that's not racism I don't know what is.

Private groups can and do give out scholarships to whomever they want. This isn't strictly speaking affirmative action as the government isn't forcing them to do it. If the KKK wants to give a full ride scholarship to some young white financially neglected male student they are well within their rights to do so. Just as another group could give out a scholarship for having large breasts. These are the actions of private groups with private money.

However, when my opponent suggests that "an employer should be able to hire anyone they want" he's striking at the heart of what he's suppose to advocate. Affirmative action suggests that if you have hired the most qualified workforce and that workforce has too many whites you need to hire a less qualified minority rather than somebody you want to hire. Affirmative action does exactly what he suggests it doesn't.

Employers are free to hire whomever they want. They can hire a large portion of disadvantaged racial groups. The law is pretty clear however that employers can't actually hire based on whatever reasons they want. State and federal law make it punishable to be biased in the selection of employees on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity. Affirmative action however, make it punishable to not be biased in favor of some employees based on race and gender. That if you lack enough diversity in your hiring practices the Feds won't be happy.

Stopping affirmative action means preventing the government from insisting you hire less qualified employees to make your workforce more diverse because of some sense of liberal guilt. It was attempted for a number of years and the end result wasn't any help for minorities. The only group it actually managed to help was white women.

The law is clear as to the criteria which can be used to make employment decisions. And, it should be like that! You shouldn't be allowed to hire a white guy because he's white, or pass on a guy because he has IBS and you don't want to deal with the medical insurance, or hire a guy because he has a family at the deficit of a single person. These considerations are outside the purview of what a business should know about us. However, affirmative action goes beyond this. It says that we need to hire people because they are a minority. That we need a workforce with at least X% of people of this race or Y% of this gender. It's an albatross around the neck of business forcing them to hire the less qualified because of the color of their skin.

Affirmative action is neither just nor acceptable. Companies are forbidden from hiring or firing based on criteria such as race or gender already and can be sued for such actions under the present laws. Going above and beyond this and demanding that they hire less qualified persons just to get a more diverse workforce is unneeded and unacceptable.
Debate Round No. 1
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Posted by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
Well then you're a moron. The quotas and other practices were a bit above and beyond but affirmative action is basically a color blindness to hiring practices that allows a company to be sued if they happen to only hire white men. My argument was a sham, equating the largess of quotas to the entire practice of making sure everybody gets a fair shake. While coddling the ideas of affirmative action I painted affirmative action as a very narrow and unjustified practice.

The good bits have become so ingrained in us that we see them as basic fairness. That we see something wrong with a company only hiring white men and having a policy of never hiring a minority when strictly speaking the government, by preventing such things, is taking affirmative action to insure racial fairness in a hope that the specter of racism dies with our father's generations.

Glad you fell for it, I'll happily pad my wins.
Posted by knick-knack 9 years ago
knick-knack
I don't like affirmative action.
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