Soft Bigotry and Low Expectations at HHS

This is not exactly a higher-ed matter but, as you will see, it is so similar to typical higher-ed “diversity” doublethink that I thought PBC readers would enjoy it.

In the Federal Register on Friday, the Department of Health and Human Services published a notice soliciting nominations to its “Technical Review Panel on the Medical Trustees Reports.” The notice states in part:

When selecting members for this Technical Review Panel, HHS will give close attention to equitable geographic distribution and to minority and female representation so long as the effectiveness of the Panel is not impaired. Appointments shall be made without discrimination on the basis of age, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, HIV status, disability, and cultural, religious, or socioeconomic status.

Two points. First, of course, there is the obvious — though common in, especially, higher-ed job notices — contradiction in juxtapositioning a declaration that there will be “close attention to equitable . . . minority and female representation” with the promise that there will be no “discrimination on the basis of . . . race, ethnicity, [or] gender.” But second, don’t you just love the commitment to appointing plenty of women and minorities — “so long as the effectiveness of the Panel is not impaired”? I’m sure that the good folks at HHS would admonish us that it is racist and sexist to object that their striving for some politically correct level of “diversity” will inevitably encourage a lowering of standards, but apparently they themselves don’t really believe that.

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