Diary of a misEducated Black Man

The Doc Rok Special Edition; Whoopi or Beyonce?

So, one of my oldest friends in the world and avid blogger, the tremendously talented  (don’t believe me check him out at http://djdocrok.wordpress.com/) DJ Doc Rok dropped me a line today.

I got a topic of discussion for ya – Is discrimination the natural state of the human race? It would seem as long as you look back in human history, someone has always got the short end of the stick, whether the discrimination is based on race, social status, gender, orientation, etc.  Then there’s the more insidious studies that show that “good looking” people are more likely to get raises, be successful, and (just this morning I heard on the radio) more likely to be acquitted at trial. This sort of discrimination isn’t “institutionalized” in the way that Jim Crow, or anti-gay marriage laws, or Arizona state laws are, but at the same time its institutionalized through society, making it perhaps more pervasive and less likely to be subject to change.
What do you think?

Well Doc, lets first look at it through a scientific lens first.  Darwin would say of course, discrimination is the natural state of man, if it weren’t we’d still be apes.  Got it.  Scientifically it makes sense because  in order to survive and evolve we must discriminate against the weak.  In a modern context it turns ugly, literally.

Now lets say for instance, in your office downtown Doc.  You are looking for a receptionist.  Pretty standard need for an office.  You hire the pretty girl because it’s better business, is it not?  You have two evenly matched candidates, one’s Whoopi and ones Beyonce…to the left, to the left you go Whoopi.  Of course that’s discrimination, and it’s illegal if you can prove it.  But is it wrong?

If the better looking receptionist causes your clients to want to sign with you just because they’d rather look at her everyday than look at Whoopi down the street.  Its better business. As a business man are you wrong for making a better business decision?  Well, yes and no.  Your discriminating yes, but like the Neanderthals your doing whats best for you, your business, and your family. I can’t blame you, I’d do the same thing, except I’d hire her so I can look at her.

Somehow it always comes back to capitalism, which in my opinion is also a natural state of man.  Thats going to draw some strange looks from people I know.  But, if you can get past this overly idealistic thinking that before Europeans ruled the world, we all broke bread in a circle, got along and sang hymns, you’ll see what I’m getting at.  Man has always been about feeding him and his.  Man is a beast-like, warmongering animal.  Capitalism is the perfect fit for such a species.  You think cavemen got along with their neighbors, who competed for the same four wooly mammoths that happened to walk by one day a year when sun was highest in the sky.  I doubt it.  And when the mammoth was slaughtered, they bartered the meat and wool.   We havn’t evolved much from those days now that I think of it.

Capitalism forces us to be discriminatory.  It is highly pervasive throughout our society and vastly different from institutional racism which can also be tied to capitalism in another 10,000 words that I’m not writing.  I’m no socialist, but Stevie Wonder can see the flaws within our current system.  To be brutally honest, I can’t blame a guy for discriminitory business practices, as long as the goal is to make money, not hate.  Discrimination is what evolved our species.  However, for a pretty chick to get acquitted in court over an ugly one is just wrong.  Now that just makes me mad.

So in the end, discrimination isn’t necessarily a bad thing to have innate to our species.  The question more or less is, is the discrimination hate based, or business/evolution based?  Does it matter?  I dunno, I’m just a guy still waiting on my little chunk of the Nobel Peace prize.

Thanks for the topic Doc.  I love it, appreciate it, and encourage more of the same…from all three of my readers.

…check please…