The Corner

Culture

Woody Allen and Affirmative Action

Director Woody Allen at the premiere Magic in the Moonlight in New York City in 2014. (Lucas Jackson/Reuters)

In his recently published memoir, Woody Allen writes:

I’ve taken some criticism over the years that I didn’t use African-Americans in my movies. And while affirmative action can be a fine solution in many instances, it does not work when it comes to casting. I always cast the person who fits the part most believably in my mind’s eye.

He’s strictly meritocratic, in other words. As he has said elsewhere: “I cast only what’s right for the part. Race, friendship means nothing to me except who is right for the part.”

In light of Mr. Allen’s insistence that, nonetheless, “affirmative action can be a fine solution in many instances,” here is today’s multiple-choice question:

For which of the following positions is it least important to select the person who will do the best job?

(a) Medical personnel during a coronavirus pandemic;

(b) Policemen, firefighters, schoolteachers, and other public employment in which a lack of “diversity” is a frequent complaint;

(c) A position in your company that will affect its success and your paycheck;

(d) A job for which you are the most qualified and for which you have applied; or

(e) A minor role in a pretentious art-house movie that no one will see.

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