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Affirmative action & Racism in heaven
Affirmative action can be at times be a form of reverse racism, when the original intention of the scheme has been “lost along the way”.
Affirmative actions are designed with well meaning objectives because they support the disadvantaged with the opportunities for studies, or equip them with the skills for business and employment, that they would otherwise have difficulty obtaining. Secondly, affirmative actions also allow the minorities to break into “exclusive” enclaves that would not normally employ them, even when they have the skills and qualifications.
True affirmative actions do not mean forcing under-qualified minorities onto employers, or deliberately passing such students even when they fail examinations.
However, some substandard or under-qualified people have from time to time slipped through the net because those managing the affirmative action programmes have been operating with a misguided understanding of the programme intentions.
Additionally, when someone enjoying the support of affirmative actions does not pull his/her weight to fulfil the trust accorded and output expected, this person is then enjoying privileges on a (reverse) racial basis – basically bludging on a racial ticket.
Similarly, when a dominant but economically disadvantaged group uses its military/political dominance to extract economic and other advantages without accountability or legislated governance, or on the basis of ethnicity as (has)is happening in some South-East Asian countries, then it’s officially sanctioned racism.
In such cases, affirmative actions are only for the majority rather than the minority or disadvantaged – one sees scions of powerful ministers or tycoons sweeping up all the scholarships while the poor of the minority have only a snowflake chance in hell of sniffing any of these scholarships.
Racism in heaven
Man is a group animal like the canines. It would have a leader and a pack. Hence there is never equality – some are leaders, some are followers. This doesn’t mean that it’s racism. It’s just the nature of pack animals, to which we humans belong.
Also, according to Chinese (Taoist) beliefs, though the universe is “one”, it has a duality nature, consisting of two completely different and opposing elements, which are interdependent and coexisting in a state of flux.
On this issue, using that belief, I tend to support your second preference but with an additional factor – our relative positions of non-equality are as a consequence of the constantly state of continuous flux, as each “exerts” and “withdraws”. There may be brief moments of total equality, but this is transient as the flux continues. Thus, in general one would always be more equal than the other, but the situation will change.
The timeframe for changeover of dominance/leadership may be immediate or long term, very very long term. In world affairs, we have witnessed or read about the waxing and waning of the might of nations. In nature we see day giving way to night, and vice versa. The 4 seasons are in reality two, growth and dormancy, each taking its turn to be dominant.
China was at one time the mightiest nation on earth, but then it became the sick man of Asia. Now it is slowly getting up from its sick bed. The Roman Empire was another such example. The British Empire has a similar fate of diminishing power. A former remote British colony is today the mightiest nation in this world. The change continues. Some would try to maintain the status quo, but they may only succeed at most in delaying the unstoppable continuous flux.
What about racism in heaven? I don’t believe in God or heaven too, though I live by the Buddhist/Taoist creed and any other similar code of living (like charity, tolerance and compassion as practiced in Christianity, Taoism and Buddhism).
The Buddhist concept of kamma is not very different from Chinese beliefs in “reap what you harvest”, so religiously, racism would bring bad kamma on the racist, and this could be in the present or next or other future life/lives.