The US is a multiethnic society and one of key issues in our society during many centuries was discrimination: on race, origin, skin color, gender, religion etc. Discrimination is incompatible with Constitutional statements on human rights and equality. Thus, a number of policies have emerged in the society and within organizations, in particular, aimed at addressing discrimination (Werther & Davis, 1996). Policies of affirmative actions were designed in order to ensure equal employment opportunities for all US citizens (Faundez, 1994). However, some of these policies have gradually transformed into their opposites.
For example, the idea of “reverse discrimination” is an artificial form of discrimination against the dominant group aimed at compensating the social inequalities (Faundez, 1994). Activists of feminist movement have developed and promoted the criteria of comparable worth, which state that wages in the “women’s” jobs should be equaled with “men’s” jobs, which are traditionally better paid for (Ebert & Griffin & Starke, 2003). Although the very idea of affirmative action is reasonable and is quite consistent with my moral philosophy, the extreme forms of it result in new forms of discrimination. The key idea of moral philosophy that I have chosen is based on the idea that freedom of an individual has its boundaries where it affects the freedom of other individuals. Such phenomena as reverse discrimination and criteria of comparable worth are not likely to reduce discrimination, but will rather boost it because dominant groups will be protecting their rights, too.
Currently affirmative action is banned in several states (Klarsfeld, 2010), and it is likely that it will be banned everywhere in US in some time. The idea of affirmative action has transformed into milder and more reasonable measures such as anti-discrimination legislation of pre-employment testing and higher tolerance to representatives of the minority groups (Klarsfeld, 2010). It can be stated that the idea of affirmative action was at certain extent effective. However, I believe that discrimination issues should be addresses by mass media, cultural production, by country leaders and other famous people. In this case, people’s tolerance will be affected quicker and more effectively than in case of numerous legal actions against possible discrimination attempts.
Ebert, R.J. & Griffin, R.W. & Starke, F. (2003). Business Essentials. Pearson Education Canada.
Faundez, J. (1994). Affirmative action: international perspectives. International Labour Organization.
Klarsfeld, A. (2010). International Handbook on Diversity Management at Work: Country Perspectives on Diversity and Equal Treatment. Edward Elgar Publishing.
Werther, W. & Davis, K. (1996). Human resources and personnel management. McGraw-Hill.