Color Blindness is Bunk
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The big news at Ford Motor Company these days is not so much those tires they're going to put on their cars and trucks but rather which colors will make the decision. Last summer, Ford was named the 30th "best company for minorities" in the country by Fortune magazine, and if the class action lawsuit filed against it in February has merit, that's probably true.

But the corollary of being the best company for minorities seems to be that it's one of the worst for aging white males — a minority group that lacks the privileges others usually get. The lawsuit, filed by older white male executives, claims the company fired them to make room for more fashionable faces. "Consideration of race and gender in employment decisions to benefit minorities and females and to disadvantage white males is standard operating procedure" at the company, according to the complaint.

As evidence, the complaint cites statements of several Ford executives. Some of the remarks are openly anti-white, such as the videotaped speech of Ford CEO Jacques Nasser to one of the sessions in corporate brainwashing known as a "diversity training seminar." "I do not like the sea of white faces in the audience," Mr. Nasser preached, "and FoMoCo [cute corporate jargon for the company] must ensure that in the future, the company reflects the broad spectrum of Ford's customers."

It would be fun to speculate on what would happen to a Fortune 500 CEO who said he disliked seeing so many black faces in the audience. Professional ruin would probably be the least of the consequences, but for bosses who dislike seeing too many whites, there's no problem.

Mr. Nasser's anti-white bigotry is not unique, however. Richard Parry-Jones, Ford's vice-president for product development and quality, says, "We are trapped in a mono-cultural environment that is dominated by old white males." "We need to change. We need more employees who are reflective of our consumer base." The head of Ford Credit, Don Winkler, says, "We went to headhunters who didn't find us 51-year-old white males." In other words, some minorities get blacklisted.

The quotes, none of which seems to be denied by Ford or the gentlemen who uttered them, have several interesting implications. Not the least is that they pretty much blow the big lie of "color blindness" out of the water. The whole rationale for fighting "discrimination" ever since the sit-ins at Southern lunch counters has been to do away with racial prejudice as a basis of admissions to schools and hiring and promotion in business. Affirmative action, mandated by government policy, is one blatant violation of that concept. But what Ford has done has been to internalize the new bigotry all by itself, without government help.

If that's becoming standard practice at large companies, then whites may not have much future in them, and abolishing affirmative action by legislation or court decision won't help. What the "civil rights revolution" turns out to mean in reality as opposed to rhetoric and theory is not that no race dominates others, but that one race (namely whites) gets dominated by a new racial supremacy.

Yet another implication is that, judging from the remarks of Mr. Nasser and Mr. Parry-Jones, Ford's push for diversity is driven not so much by ideology as by business itself — they think Ford needs to "reflect the broad spectrum" of its customers and to have employees "more reflective of its consumer base."  This may well be sheer moonshine, designed to make them sound like good businessmen rather than a couple of sap-headed do-gooders out to wreck their own company. Then again, it may well be what they teach in business schools these days. Whichever it is, it's hard to believe that anyone considering buying a Ford car or truck much cares what race or gender the executives are.

But whatever the economic merits of giving the bounce to loyal and experienced white executives and hiring and promoting new ones just because of their color and sex, what the Ford practice may also reveal is the marriage of Economic Man with the totalitarianism politely called "political correctness."  What Ford may be saying is that racial and sexual discrimination against white males now pays.

That's not true, of course, but if not only Ford but also enough other corpo-crats come to believe it — and organization men can make themselves believe just about anything — it's one more indication that white males are going to face more than a few serious problems in the looming future. Not only will they lose their country to the flood of Third World immigrants their government refuses to control, but also they'll lose their jobs as their own businessmen convince themselves their employees are no longer worth keeping.

Samuel Francis is a nationally syndicated columnist.



June 04, 2001

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