The Physics of Discrimination

“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” 

Working as a fund consultant in higher education exposes one to the good, the bad, and the downright ugly, as it relates to donor relations and the establishment of privately endowed funds. It is also instructive, in that it enables those with critical eyes and liberated minds to recognize microcosmic trends indicative of stresses within society at large that explode and indict so many of the prevailing narratives of our epoch.

One such noticeable trend has been an uptick in donor requests to endow a certain variant of fund, one that we’ll call here “affinity funds.” Simply put, these are funds requiring that the beneficiaries of the fund proceeds be members of some specific racial, ethnic, religious, or gender group. While not unique in and of itself, what is unique is the demographic shift that has been occurring within the groups of individuals now seeking to endow affinity funds, the vehemence with which they express their preferences, and the frequency with which these endowment requests are being received.

Some background exposition is necessary. The institution is currently in the process of reevaluating its endowment policies. Top brass wants to ensure that funds are constitutionally consonant, in that newly accepted funds will not include preferences that could potentially be deemed discriminatory. (Now, in practice this will likely only be used as a pretext to reject the odd retrograde fund attempting to reserve funding for males/whites/over represented in higher education minority groups, but that is a discussion to be reserved for another post). This sea change comes after years of accepting privately endowed funds that explicitly preferred women and minority groups (URMs in higher ed speak) to the exclusion of nearly all other considerations.

However, as the institution is attempting to transition from accepting restrictive endowments into establishing endowments with broader terms, we are seeing an increase in donors attempting to endow funds specifically for males/whites/over represented in higher education minority groups (using coded language, of course), requesting infernally restrictive terms and opting to walk away from endowing funds with the institution altogether if the demands are not met. A number of coworkers are perplexed by these developments, but any blind man could see what is happening here.

Unfairness begets unfairness. Discrimination begets discrimination. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Confronted with a clear imbalance, humans will always seek to restore balance.

The reality in higher education is that there is almost no funding available to average, male, and non-URMIHE kids. Actually, funding for exceptional students of these descriptions is damn near non existent as well, as higher ed is shifting away from merit based awards to need based awards. These kids are just not sought after commodities in the higher ed market, as they fail to check off enough of the right boxes. Within the he present day catechism of diversity, these are the unholy. Within the context of the contrived “privileged versus oppressed” dialectic of the age, these students are privileged and must be hobbled in the name of equality.

What is taking place is obvious and infinitely rational. Donors identifying with these students are not blind to the ways in which the entrenched multi-cult zeitgeist works to (paradoxically) exclude certain groups in the name of diversity and to privilege “good” demographics over “bad” ones and are throwing all of their weight behind their endowments, in a bid to restore balance to a landscape that is completely off kilter as a result of government sponsored “positive” discrimination and a cultural climate that is increasingly hostile to groups that most often tend sit at the pinnacles of success.

It’s impossible to ignore that this trend has been manifesting itself within the larger society as well as people are becoming increasingly aware of the inconsistencies inherent within liberal narratives. Faced with the imposition of ironclad mandates of multiculturalism and diversity issued by cultural commissars, people have responded by digging in their heels and becoming increasingly nationalistic and tribalistic, a backlash that has been largely unanticipated and surprising in its furor to those most invested in propagating the multicultural/diversity/oppressed versus oppressor narratives. The social engineering overlords have inadvertently triggered an extreme reaction trending in the opposite direction, a corrective force antagonistic to the countervailing social doctrine of inclusive exclusion.

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