S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Diversity vs. fear of "The Other" in governance

How different are political party attitudes about the idea of diversity in the workplace?  Historically, the Republican party has been a very long way from achieving diversity and inclusiveness. Republicans are living out fear of "the other" in their presidential campaign.  Compare the Republican lineup of "mostly white men," with the Democratic lineup, led in the polls by the first female having a real chance of getting elected.  Democrats in Washington have actually lived out "diversity and inclusion" in the Obama administration.

How diverse is the current Democratic administration led by President Obama?  The effort formally began with the establishment in the President's Office of Personnel Management of a Diversity and Inclusion in Government Council in 2011.  By 2013 Real Clear Politics wrote that the White House was very committed to a diverse cabinet.

How hard did the Democratic administration push for real inclusion up to 2015?  Yesterday, according to Juliet Elperin in the Washington Post, President "Obama has vastly changed the face of the federal bureaucracy."  Diversity initiatives are "baked in" at the cabinet level such as in the Energy Department and the Department of Veteran's Affairs, for example.

What happens when there is genuine commitment to diversity in the federal government workforce?  According to Chron/Small Business, there are some distinct advantages to having a diverse workforce.  There can be increases in productivity and creativity.  Our government's global focus demands a variety of language skills.  Additionally, a positive reputation for diversity enhances the possibility of attracting the best and brightest workers, who choose the government as their employer.

Why do so many Republicans believe that government cannot work?  We ended up with a deeply divided government in Washington, starting in 2013.  That year, the Lee and Low Blog, argued that the U. S. Congress lacked diversity, citing a number of unfortunate reasons.  Republicans took control of the legislative branch of government using gerrymandering, exclusionary voter ID laws, low voter turnout, inadequate campaign finance rules, along with racism and sexism.

What would have to happen for Republicans to elect the next POTUS?  It occurred to me that the Trump phenomenon currently manifesting in the Republican party indicates that achieving voter diversity is not one of their goals.  Contrast among their candidates is not high.  They have one African American, one female, and one Latino. 

What are their chances?  Not good in a general election.  There are far too many diverse voters, the "others" so feared by the Far Right.

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