Aren’t “diversity” and “caring” at odds?

Reports from the front suggest that life in the business world ain’t as much fun as it was. Hours are up, security is down, and managements are increasingly turning to various “management by terror” systems, such as employee evaluation programs that require some fixed percentage of employees in every department to be declared deadwood and axed every year.

There are no doubt a variety of causes for these trends, including globalism and better communications that put everyone in the world in immediate competition with everyone else in the world. One trend that seems likely to be a cause, although so far as I know it hasn’t been studied in this connection, is multiculturalism.

People can work together in organizations because of a complex of personal loyalties and connections and common goals and understandings that make them adopt the organization’s goals as their own and enjoy working with their colleagues to achieve them. They can also work together because their duties are laid out for them and they’re rewarded if they perform and punished if they don’t. Diversity, multiculturalism and the civil rights laws forbid workers to respond to each other differently because of age, sex, religion, social or cultural background, and what not else. In other words, they are forbidden to deal with each other as human beings with reference to the things people care about. Can there be any doubt which style of working together such a requirement supports and which it makes nearly impossible?

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