Blind means don’t see differences

Quote of the day:

Anti-racists collect statistics about race with a celerity and obsessional intrusiveness that would have put the apartheid regime to shame. The opposite of a racist is not an anti-racist but someone who does not think in racial categories at all. Theodore Dalrypmple

This also applies to gender, age and any other difference some people consider more important than our common humanity.

Those who regard all people as equal see them as people first and foremost, not as a member of a sub-group.

Positive discrimination can sometimes be a force for good but it is still discrimination which focusses on a difference.

Being blind to colour, gender,age or any other difference means you don’t see those things, you simply see the people inside because that is what really matters.

7 Responses to Blind means don’t see differences

  1. Andrei says:

    Positive discrimination can sometimes be a force for good but it is still discrimination which focusses on a difference.

    Nope – and particularly if you are the one discriminated against in order that favour maybe bestowed upon the favoured “minority”.

    The rest of the post is spot on though, we must always remember that we are all God’s children.

    It is also worth keeping in mind that the things we might value in this world, wealth, status and power will have no value whatsoever in the next and that the person we sneer might be in better standing with the Lord than we are despite their race, ugliness, poverty, lack of intellectual prowess or whatever it is that we hold in esteem


  2. David Winter says:

    The problem with facile notions of “colourblindness” like the quote (and John Ansell’s compaign) is precisely that they don’t allow you to see differences.Young Maori face about 30x the risk of developing rheumatic fever than do young pakeha, I think we should pay attention to that difference, don’t you?


  3. homepaddock says:

    But it’s not being Maori which increases the risk, it’s other factors eg poor housing, isn’t it?


  4. David Winter says:

    Differences in risk for some disease in Polynesian and Maori populations can be explained by genetic differences (diabetes, gastric cancer, gout…). Rheumatic fever is probably not one of those diseases, which was kind of my point: being colorrblind in the wat Dalrypmple suggests would allow you to gloss over what is a pretty shameful statistic – if you Maori suffer greatly increased risk of a disease associated with povery and poor housing then we ought to now about it.

    (BTW, I see the risk is more like 23x greater for Maori than Pakeha, I’d said 30x in the earlier comment which was off the top of my head, and should have looked it up)


  5. Paranormal says:

    But DW isn’t that the point. Shouldn’t we be focussing on the individual’s issues rather than race issues? By focussing on race we are both discriminating and potentially generalising in responding to the issue. By generalising resources are unwisely sprayed across sectors with little change in outcomes.


  6. Gravedodger says:

    Paranormal +1.
    Until Maori cast the grievance blanket aside and focus on things that will advance their race with aspiration , education and healthy lifestyles they are doomed and it is not my fault.

    If welfare is the answer it is a very dumb question

    Hence the many success stories of Maori who have escaped across the Tasman to make a creative achievement with their talents while those who remain here are trapped in the morass that is NZ welfare.


  7. David Winter says:

    It depends, of course, on exactly what it is you’re talking about. But the blanket “colourblind” attitude misses the point that we are not a perfectly egalitarian society, and people like me (a pakeha, middle class male) start from a position of privilege.

    As for particular interventions – sometimes targeting campaigns on cultural or ethnic groups is the most effective way to make things better. When that ‘s the case, we should do it.


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