For years the Left and Right have been locked in a tug-of-war over how best to ensure the equality promised in the Declaration of Independence. Recently, the entire argument took a turn for the absurd when liberals decided to junk the term equality in favor of equity, maintaining that equality of opportunity wasn’t enough — that truly leveling the playing field requires equality of outcome.
And what becomes of meritocracy — of rewarding individuals on the basis of ability and achievement — under this world view?
Alison Collins, Vice President of the San Francisco Board of Education, has an answer. Her solution is to dismiss meritocracy as racist. At a board meeting last October, Collins said, according to Hot Air’s John Sexton:
When we talk about merit, meritocracy and especially meritocracy based on standardized testing. I’m just going to say it, in this day and age we cannot mince words. Those are racist systems.
If you’re going to say that merit is, like, fair, it’s the antithesis of fair, and it’s the antithesis of just. And so, you can’t use equity. You can’t talk about social justice and then say you want to have a selective school that keeps certain kids out from the neighborhoods that you think are dangerous. That’s all kind of Trumpian language.
Collins’s goal is to scrap not only meritocracy but standardized testing itself. She is currently leading a push to implement a lottery system at Lowell High School, which is one of the oldest — and most prestigious — public schools in the country.
According to FaithWire, the school “is already diverse and fairly reflective of the district. Of the school’s 2,900 students, 51% are Asian, 18% are white, 12% are Latino, 6% are Filipino, and 2% are black. The district’s overall enrollment is, by comparison, 33% Asian, 28% Latino, 15% white, 6% black, and 4% Filipino. Black Americans make up 5.2% of the entire San Francisco population.”
In spite of that “the San Francisco Alliance of Black School Educators ‘wholeheartedly’ supports the effort to eliminate merit-based admissions.”
A vote on whether to proceed with the planned switch takes place on Feb. 9.