Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Please read this article about "Diversity" in the Dallas Morning News. What do you think? And Why

Please read this article about "Diversity" in the Dallas Morning News. What do you think? And Why?
By Trey Garrison / Special Contributor When I made the hard decision to forgo buying a house in Dallas (and the easy decision to avoid the Potemkin village of DISD), I knew I was gonna get it. The thing is, I really wanted to live in Dallas, but we just couldn't do it. So we chose Plano. Once we pulled the trigger, the judgments came a-flyin'. Mainly it was from friends who are, well, urban yokels. You know the kind – hipper-than-thou provincialists, for whom where you reside in relation to a municipal taxing boundary defines you. (Fine, guys, you take the trendy bars and the home invasions; I'll take the bland corporate sports grill and the gated community. We'll split the teen heroin problem.) This was fine. Friends tease you like that. But then I started getting comments from readers at one of my other publications about "diversity," whatever that means. Apparently, in choosing a house in one of the top school districts in the country, in a suburb where the poverty rate is low and the median income is high, I was guilty of the high crime of white flight. My humbled, guilty reaction consisted of two words: "So what?" I mean, what the heck does diversity mean? Some of my new neighbors in Plano include people from Thailand, Armenia, India, Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Colombia and the Ukraine, but apparently that doesn't count. And when a school is 85 percent white, it's not diverse, but when it's 85 percent Hispanic, it is? I was scolded that my daughter, by being in a Plano school, would be sheltered from – nay, ill-equipped for – life in the real world. Well, yeah. Probably. The real world is a lot bigger than Dallas, bigger than (Sam Houston, forgive me) Texas, and bigger than the United States. The majority of the real world is dirty, violent, poor and absent indoor plumbing and two-ply toilet paper. More than half the world's people live on something like $1 a day. I don't think attending Woodrow Wilson High equips you any better for that kind of outdoorsy, back-to-nature lifestyle than Plano West, but I admit I don't know much about Woodrow's elective courses. I want a school that will prepare her for living in a professional, high-paying world so Daddy won't have to pound out columns in his dotage. I was also told, most oddly, that by subjecting my kid to suburban life and suburban schools, she'd get no exposure to people from other cultures. That's when it got silly. So I'd harrumph in my best Ted Baxter voice that's crazy – why, the lady who does her nails is Vietnamese, and our lawn guy is a Mexican from Costa Rica or Panama or someplace. Seriously, if the only exposure to other people your kid gets is when she's sitting in a place where you move about like cattle at the sound of a bell and have to ask permission to go to the bathroom (i.e. school), what kind of sheltered life are you giving your kid? It's weird. We've made "diversity" into some kind of totem, an end to itself, and we haven't even defined what it is. Do I learn more about a different perspective chatting with my Ukrainian neighbor (whom the census counts as white), or from a guy brought up five miles from me who happens to be black? And I'm not entirely sold that diversity is automatically good. Look, diversity is great when it comes to nightclubs, workplaces, cultural experiences, restaurants and all that. But I don't want diversity in my neighborhood. Now, put down the pitchfork. I don't mean the superficial diversity of skin color. I mean diversity of values. That's what I don't want in my neighborhood, or my neighborhood school. I want uniformly boring neighbors with uniformly boring, middle-class values who spend Saturdays working on their lawns and whose kids know to stay off mine. I want neighbors with Home Depot on speed dial. That's how I choose to live. Your mileage may vary. And isn't that diversity, too?
Politics - 6 Answers
Random Answers, Critics, Comments, Opinions :
1 :
I think they could benefit from some formal study on heterogeneity/homogeneity and some post-modern theory on identity.
2 :
Couldn't agree with the writer more.
3 :
That's a good article. I live in Texas too.
4 :
This is one of the things that concerns me. We are the United States of America, not the Diversified States of America. Dearborn Michigan has become the middle East of America. Garden Grove, Ca. is the Vietnam of America. What has happened to assimilation. "Press one for Spanish", "Your child needs to learn to speak Spanish". The first thing that units a country is a common language. The root word of "Diversity" is "Divide"
5 :
I too live in a big city. Not as big as Dallas but big enough. I had to move to the suburbs becasue my neighbor hood had become a war zone and going down hill quickly. I still own it as a rental and I am sure that your ex neighbors call you Mrs. Uncle Tom. They are shallow. You and your husband are hard working Americans and want the best for your childrenl. There is nothing wrong with that! Good Luck ! P.S. The meaning of diversity in my mind is people who want the same nice things and they they are all after the same honest goals. I don't care if your skin color is black, white, red, green, etc. I just don't want to live around loosers no matter what their skin color is. This country is too hung up on the color of your skin.
6 :
I think diversity is over rated. I says likes all act like humans for a change