Is not about numbers
It is about perspectives.
The presence and valuing of different views
The subconscious, automatic assumption that
The presence of divergent thought is inherently good
For all of us
Making us – and our institutions – stronger, smarter and more human(e).
If we have to talk about diversity
In terms of numbers, demographics, and boxes checked on the EEO form
We still don’t have it.
Diversity is about dismantling White Privilege
Aka hegemony, supremacy
That has gripped institutions for centuries.
We cannot afford to mistake as “diversity”
Schemes that live up to the letter but not the spirit of Affirmative Action plans
Dressing up White Privilege in a different cast of characters.
When an institution can be proud of it
Is when we don’t have to mention the word at all.
Not in our mission statements, nor our strategic plans.
It should be normal; the natural result of standard operating procedures.
But if standard operating procedures stifle debate
Or confuse one’s obligation to provide alternative perspectives
With insubordination, bullying, not knowing one’s place,
Or if the diversity resulting from strategic hiring practices yields sameness of thought,
Status quo, business as usual,
Then diversity has not been achieved
No matter how colorful the parade of skin tones might be.