Before we get started, please allow me to raise my right hand and publicly proclaim my undying love for the City of Elgin, Illinois. Their city council is one of the best, the police department is one of the best, I love Mayor Kaptain, there are an exceptional number of exceptional city staffers, and, unless you’ve been living under a rock, the city is clearly headed in a positive direction.
But just like it is with any reasonable long-term marriage, there comes a time when you have to tell your wife it’s not the pants that make her butt look big, it’s something else entirely. And the truth is, Elgin really needs to put the “diversity” fork down.
Please also note that I am a social liberal, not that it will matter to my adoring progressive throng who suddenly believe I’m evil incarnate.
So, let’s move on.
When I heard Elgin was offering employees “unconscious-bias” training as part of their continuing diversity initiative, I was a little confused. But then I thought, “Why not!” It might be kinda of fun to see what kind of unconscious bias they could impart unto their employees. I’ve always been a big fan of large-scale social experiments.
Wouldn’t it be fascinating to see if they could get white people to cross the street whenever they see another white person walking towards them? B. F. Skinner would be so proud!
But then a high-ranking Elgin official explained they weren’t trying to instill bias into staffers, they were trying to root out those staffers’ unconscious biases. And the sound you heard yesterday afternoon was me banging my head against the wall for a full five minutes.
First! There’s a reason they call them “unconscious” biases. It’s because they’re unconscious! So, short of some psychic trainers or months of Freudian analysis, I’m not quite sure how they plan on dragging those prejudices all the way up to the surface.
Second, like every other human being, these trainers have their own unconscious biases, which makes it impossible to sort out who’s biasing who. If I was told I had to endure unconscious bias training, I’d have a number of unconscious (and conscious) biases against the folks trying to uncover my unconscious bias.
Most of you already know I’ve been fighting for diversity and a level playing field for 12 long years, but this insipid initiative is even worse than a bad Stuart Smalley skit. Why not just have Elgin employees don heavy cardigan sweaters and look into a large mirror as they say, “I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it! I have no unconscious biases.”
Trust me! It would require a lot less time and effort and it would be much more effective, too.
Of course, this newest example of liberalism gone wild can be traced directly back to disgraced former U-46 School Board member, Traci Ellis, who never met a Caucasian she didn’t blame for something. She whispers into councilpersons Tish Powell’s and Corey Dixon’s ears, and they’re all too happy go along with her latest bizarre bigoted scheme.
To be fair, Dixon does it to a lesser degree, but since I expect a lot more from him, he’s become a much bigger disappointment.
Then, fearing Ellis’ small, but vocal posse of sycophantic middle-aged white women who can’t get over the fact they were born Caucasian, the entire City Council signs onto it, too. Then you get “unconscious bias” training which is just another bigoted byword for “We are going to make you understand just how much you white people suck, whether you like it or not!”
Cause we all know the majority of Elgin employees are, indeed, white.
Look, I’m the first one to point out that I prefer my honorary Mexican heritage and there’s nothing white folks can’t screw up. And I’ve been behind every other Elgin diversity drive, particularly the controversial EPD Puerto Rico recruiting trip. But the conscious bias here is, you get regular folks, with their occasionally strange predilections, to start thinking there’s really something wrong with them and then they only dig in further.
And that always does far more harm than good. It’s exactly this kind of rampant reverse liberal bigotry that made Donald Trump president.
The other huge problem Elgin has here is the Hawthorne Effect, a well-known and widely accepted psychological phenomenon that stipulates individuals always modify their behavior in response to their awareness of being observed.
Put more simply, the trainees will tell the trainers exactly what they want to hear just to get them off their backs and get back to work.
As always, I spoke with an Elgin official who convinced me there is some value to this training. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t leave that conversation convinced that 90 percent of unconscious bias trainees would walk out of it thinking, “That’s 90 minutes of my life I’ll never get back,” while the other 10 percent might actually get something out of it.
There’s certainly something to be said for tackling a problem in smaller increments, but I still firmly believe this is just another case of abject liberal bullshit.
Aside from being a gargantuan waste of time, on the basis of that source, I’d generally be OK with the training, because I have no illusions as to Elgin’s “perfection.” But whenever anything involves our terrible trio – Ellis/Powell/Dixon – it always reeks of the same ulterior motives they love to regularly ascribe to white folks.
Ain’t it funny how their thoughts on diversity never seem to include that plurality of Elgin Hispanics?
And when you do carefully examine our trio’s motives, you will inevitably come to the conclusion that they’re even whiter than I am.