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Thread: EEA is it Racialist?

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    Gold Member Dave S's Avatar
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    Question EEA is it Racialist?

    Hi all,

    I was invited to a presentation yesteday on the "Employment Equity Act", as I am in a Management position. What I heard was very interesting.

    Basically, it is a system designed to allow equal opportunity for all South Africans, this is fantastic but I have one problem... If it is for ALL South Africans, why is its foundation based on a racialist slur, I mean, any policy that starts with discrimination cannot and will never be non-racist. The bases of the plan firstly looks at "Non-designated (white males)" and "Designated (any other)" groups of individuals... straight off the mark there is discrimination against white males. I ask any of you that know the policy a little better, is it racist or not?

    I have just had my insane rambling for the day.

    Have a great day all.

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    Site Caretaker Dave A's Avatar
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    Oh boy. Where to start?

    Maybe a blog entry I did over a year ago - The problem with BEE is the B. The principle also deals with the Employment Equity Act.


    The problem with BEE is the B. (27 April 2006 - Freedom Day)

    When South Africa made the transition into full democracy in 1994, it was accompanied by one of the best constitutions in the world. The strong foundation of this wonderful constitution was the concept of individual human rights.

    One of the cornerstones of these individual rights is the concept of equality. Now this is not the type of equality we see at the beginning of a game of Monopoly where everyone starts with the same amount of money and from the same point. In fact, thinking about it, even then someone has to start first.

    Equality is not about an equal start in life.

    We all have an unequal start to life and I’m sure there are very few that would suggest there is an acceptable “Monopoly game start” solution in the game of life. Fortunately, history shows us that where we start is not what determines where we finish. What really makes the difference is what we do with our lives, and it is here we need to try to make sure that the willing and able can find their opportunity to move forward.

    Of course we went into this new era of the rainbow nation fully aware that there were problems. Decades of apartheid had left their mark. Whole communities were starting from behind others and deserved a helping hand to catch up because the racism of apartheid had prejudiced their starting position in life.

    What was needed (and still is) was to bring the opportunity to improve their lot in life to these communities in line with those enjoyed by the advantaged communities. It was never going to be an overnight job. The resources simply weren’t there. We are also talking about massive socio-economic change – it takes time.

    Now it is easy to criticise whilst not putting forward solutions. So rather than just criticise the road we have taken, I would like to suggest an alternative.

    I think we started well.

    We focused on education. If we could only do one thing to improve people’s future, this is it. We tried to improve access to education for those whose parents simply did not have the means to send their children to “good schools”. We tried to improve access to education for adults who were willing to learn, but did not have the financial resources to access further education on their own.

    We focused on housing – moving people from shacks to brick and mortar houses.

    We focused on infrastructure – rolling out roads, water, electricity and telephones to communities that did not have.

    We sought to restore land to those who had been dispossessed.

    And then we got impatient.

    Instead of waiting for the inevitable fruits of these programs to start weaving their magic, for the cream to start rising to the top, we tried to force downstream objectives that I suggest would have come anyway.

    Instead of breaking down and eliminating racial prejudice, we started building a whole new set of rules for racial prejudice. Organisations were directed towards introducing racial criteria for staff selection. Instead of looking at people purely on an ability basis and disregarding their race (or gender), organisations were encouraged to prefer certain race groups over others as a priority over ability.

    This posed a problem in terms of the constitution, and the right to equality had to be adulterated. Racial discrimination was once again alive and well in South Africa.

    The day we went wrong is the moment we re-introduced entitlement based on race into our society. If we had simply stuck to a means test to establish who needed a helping hand, we would still be a model the world could look at in awe and admiration.
    A note: I recognise that each paragraph, perhaps even each sentence of this could easily fill a chapter in a book. Each point is the result of considerable analysis, but if I included it here this would be a book, not a short(ish) comment on our society.
    The trouble with opportunity is it normally comes dressed up as work.

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    Gold Member Dave S's Avatar
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    Hi Dave, I couldn't have said it better, or in a shorter space.

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    Email problem stephanfx's Avatar
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    I couldn't agree more, the whole concept of reverse racism is just too much

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    Silver Member Eugene's Avatar
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    I fully agree. I have just read throught the Draft Legal Charter that the government is proposing for all legal practisioners and boy ol boy, if you ever want some reverse racism in action, you should see this piece of proposed legislature!

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