In his guest column in the June 16 edition of the Powell Tribune, Scott Clem argues that people should be judged by their “character,” rather than by the “color of …
In his guest column in the June 16 edition of the Powell Tribune, Scott Clem argues that people should be judged by their “character,” rather than by the “color of their skin, sexuality, or some other group identity.” I couldn’t agree more.
However, Mr. Clem also asserts that everyone in the U.S. has an equal opportunity to succeed. This makes me wonder what world Mr. Clem is living in! Was George Floyd judged by his character when he was murdered? Was Breonna Taylor? How about Matthew Shepard?
Mr. Clem would no doubt argue that Floyd, Taylor and Shepard were murdered by “wicked people,” that their deaths are not evidence of systemic prejudice in U.S. society. OK, so why did it take us until last week to guarantee equality in the workplace to LGBTQ Americans? Have they been judged by their characters in the past?
Were veterans of color after World War II judged by their characters when they were denied the housing and education benefits of the G.I. Bill? Were students in Detroit and other urban public schools judged by their characters throughout most of the 20th century when majority-Black schools received significantly less funding than majority-white schools, and the parents of these students were prohibited from moving to better-funded districts by restrictive covenants and real estate practices?
The list of examples of systemic discrimination could go on and on.
Mr. Clem is living in a dream world if he thinks that by saying that people should be judged by their characters, he can make it so.