Sunday, May 10, 2015

Egalitarianism Ruins Everything

Malcolm Pollack:

Some time ago I commented on a tiny, emaciated female police officer I had seen in Prospect Park. Now we learn that a 33-year-old woman, Rebecca Wax, is to be made a New York City firefighter despite having failed the physical exam.
Fighting fires is not a political or ideological abstraction. Actual fires take place in actual physical buildings, and threaten actual physical property and actual human bodies. Extinguishing them, therefore, and rescuing the lives of those human bodies, requires the movement and control of actual physical resources and equipment, in great haste, under demanding and extremely adverse physical conditions. Many, if not most, of these physical resources are necessarily bulky and heavy. Moreover, firefighters must work as a team, in which every member’s life may depend, at any moment, on the physical ability of any other member. Therefore, as we read in the article linked above:
In the FST exam, probies must breathe through a mask attached to an air tank while carrying up to 50 pounds of gear.
They must climb six flights of stairs, stretch hose lines, raise ladders, perform tasks that simulate breaking doors and pulling down ceilings, and drag dummies through tunnels with no visibility.
They must complete the course in 17 minutes, 50 seconds or less.
Despite many attempts over the Fire Academy’s 18-week training course, Wax completed the test just once — but it took her more than 22 minutes, the source said.
In numerous tries, Wax struggled and was too slow. While fit probies finish with air left in their tanks, she had to stop when hers ran out, the source added.
“She’s in the best shape of her life, and it’s still not good enough,” he said.
But in she goes anyway. Forward!
This pattern of subordinating vitally important standards to the doctrinal absurdities of a secular religion that prohibits all discriminations — even those that are obviously necessary to our own survival — does not confine itself to the merely physical. Earlier this year our Sandinista mayor, Bill deBlasio, agreed to pay a settlement of $98,000,000 for having required aspiring firefighters to pass a test that proved too difficult for many black applicants. Nobody alleged that the test itself contained any race-specific content; it was simply that black applicants couldn’t pass it at the same rate that white applicants did. That this might represent an actually existing statistical disparity between blacks and whites in the cognitive abilities the test sought to measure is, of course, an unspeakable hypothesis, and so the “disparate impact” of the exam can only be proof of — you guessed it — racism. And so the standards will be lowered, and we New Yorkers will be $98m poorer, while our lives and property are put at greater risk.
Thank you, Mayor deBlasio. Thank you, idiotic secular Puritans.
Here is an article about all of this by Cornell statistician William Briggs. (As you read it, be sure to follow the link to this item by Fred Reed.)

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