A ripple of horror ran through the excruciatingly PC-compliant government of Baltimore County, Maryland last week after President Trump’s Justice Department filed a suit against the county for racial discrimination in the police department. Council member Wade Kach (R) [Email him] professed to be “rather shocked” and called for further investigation. Julian Jones (D), [Email him] the only black on the council, was “taken aback.”
How could such nice, well-meaning people have allowed such a terrible thing as “discrimination” to happen on their watch?
Case after case across the U.S. has shown that any test more rigorous than a coin toss will produce the following result:
But our legal system has adopted an iron-bound rule that, if a protected minority is underrepresented by more than 20% relative to the local population, that datum alone is ipso facto proof of discrimination, regardless of the purity of the motives of the employer. (See Steve Sailer’s Questioning Ricci: Time To Abandon The EEOC's Four-Fifths Rule, written over ten years ago now.)
The unfortunate business or municipal government that fails to meet this statistical standard must bear the legal burden of proving its own innocence against the infinite prosecutorial resources of the federal government.
In Baltimore County, the demographic mix reported from 2010 census data was as follows:
According to Governing Magazine, as of four years ago, 11.5 percent of county police officers were black, 1.4 percent were “Hispanic,” and 85.5 percent were white. [Where Police Don't Mirror Communities and Why It Matters, by Mike Maciag, Governing.com, August 28, 2015]
Notice that the census numbers do not exactly match the chart above. County demography is a moving target, and under present management is likely to become even more mobile [Baltimore County Council passes income tax increase, cellphone tax, by Kate Amara, WBAL, May 23, 2019]. County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Jr., a Leftist out of Central Casting, emitted the following highly original remark, as reported in the Baltimore Sun:
A law enforcement agency should look like the community it serves. As I have said repeatedly since taking office, I am committed to increasing diversity in the county’s Police Department.
Such requirements are obviously wicked and racist, because only white people obsess over such trivialities. After all, why would a policeman need to be able to read, reason, or speak intelligibly? What could possibly go wrong when a correct percentage of the police “look like” the community they are serving? For the answer, see Ann Coulter's Would It Kill You To Hire More Black Cops? (Yes), and Pretty White Australian Girls' Lives Matter, about the death of Justine Damond.
Fortunately for the underrepresented, the county police department has already abandoned the offending test. Mr. Olszewski [Email him] did not specify when the test was discontinued, but he insists that it is a thing of the past, like Robert E. Lee Park. Gone. Never to be seen again.
But the implacable litigators in the DOJ have apparently not been mollified by such assurances. They are pushing for a judge to rule against the county, presumably to arrive at a federally supervised consent decree.
Moving quickly to burnish the county’s image, Mr. Olszewski has announced the creation of a brand-new bureaucratic post, Chief Diversity Officer, with a $115,000 salary. The administrative genius named to the post is Troy Williams, “who most recently worked as a financial adviser in the private sector.” [Democrats Bromwell and Lafferty leaving General Assembly to join Olszewski administration, by Pamela Wood and Alison Knezevich, Baltimore Sun, August 19, 2019]. Graduating with a B.A. in Business Administration from Howard University, he went on to earn a Master’s degree in Adult Education from Coppin State University, a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law, and a Master’s in Public Administration from American University. [County Bio]
It is inconceivable that such a highly credentialed individual will be able to carry out his duties without the support of a large office staff. The recent income tax increase (the first such in 30 years) and the new tax on cellphones may help to support this worthy administrative initiative.
If you believe the hype from the Social Justice Warriors, the Trump administration is attempting to dismantle the disparate impact regime [Why Trump's Effort to Eliminate Disparate Impact Rules Is a Terrible Idea, by Sarah Hinger, ACLU Racial Justice Program, January 9, 2019]. Yet here comes his Justice Department pressing a disparate impact case against Baltimore County.
Is Mr. Trump playing multidimensional chess? Perhaps he knows that Congressional action will be required to stop the insanity, since the Supreme Court ruled in Griggs v. Duke Power Company that even seemingly neutral tests violate Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act if they result in disproportionately few black hires.
That decision was way back in 1971, and it has spawned a whole industry of litigation. In 2009, the high court smacked down a group of qualified test-takers in Ricci v. Stefano, affirming that in the eyes of five out of nine justices, unequal outcomes are inherently illegal [The Dead End of “Disparate Impact”, by Amy L. Wax, National Affairs, Summer 2012].
The president may also be aware that the public is largely oblivious to this issue, because the Main Stream Media has been happy to remain silent about it as long as the permanent State was quietly working toward the abolition of all objective standards of hiring and promotion. In the view of the New York Times, the system is working just fine [The Latest Front Against Civil Rights | The law of “disparate impact” isn’t broken. There’s no need for Donald Trump to rewrite it, Editorial Board, January 4, 2019].
Could it be that Mr. Trump is giving the left a taste of its own medicine in order to stimulate thought and arouse opposition? Will this lawsuit persuade the Baltimore County Executive that the whole disparate impact regime is a sham?
Will pigs fly?
This latest act in the pathetic farce of American “democracy” should remind us that the Ship of State remains on autopilot, following a fantasy chart that bears no resemblance to the waters it is sailing.
On the 25th anniversary of the publication of The Bell Curve, public policy proceeds as if the differences in black and white test scores were a deep mystery explicable only as a subtle conspiracy by evil white men.
The Bell Curve, p. 279
But don’t worry. There is always more money for “Chief Diversity Officers.”
Soon no one will be allowed to mention such awkward, hateful data at all, and no one will know. And everyone will join hands and sing “Kumbaya” together and be as one.
Barton Cockey, MD [Email him] is a 9th-generation Marylander and an author and lecturer. He has a lifelong interest in the history and traditions of our country and has co-authored a number of books including the illustrated history Baltimore County, Historical Reflections and Favorite Scenes.