[Linux-aus] Special support for women
davidn at davidnewall.com
Tue Oct 29 23:21:44 EST 2013
(:-P (tongue in cheek)
Apparently we need special programmes to address an imbalance between
the sexes; in politics, employment, management and elsewhere, this is
widely accepted as appropriate. Linux Australia is not immune to this;
we give opportunities and support to females. This puts an elephant in
the corner: women gain opportunities at the expense of more capable (or
more needy) men. This undermines their credibility; it raises reasonable
doubts about their competence. Are they there from merit or merely to
make up the numbers?
Maggie Thatcher was never PM to improve numbers; she was destined to be
leader of UK; she earned the role. Affirmative action needed no part in
her glory. She was the best candidate. Yet I think she must have
struggled to overcome doubt. (Arguably she was better because of the
doubt, but that's for another day.)
I say merit is blind to sex; it shines from inner strength. I say
special programmes damage the interests they purport to serve. How can
someone be taken seriously if there was obligation to give a women the
place? We do them naught but disservice by gifting favours that are
intrinsically merited. We do naught but disservice by filling seats
with lesser competence.
We see ourselves as a meritocracy; for sake of honesty and transparency,
our special programmes for women should candidly admit patronage of
incompetence over political correctness. Let's cancel our "women in IT"
programmes and replace them with programmes that reward "incompetent
women in IT," or at least to widen eligibility to include hamsters and
fish. That way, competent women, of which we have plenty, can leave no
doubt that they won prestige merely on shining ability.
Chew, swallow, digest.
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