No, I’m not going to get in the middle of the discussion between Andrea and Véronique about job prospects (or lack thereof) for moms. I will simply say, since you can’t resist asking me for my opinion anyway, that I believe we each make our own opportunities based on our own unique set of experiences and challenges. Also, I never expect anything from anyone, so it’s easier for me not to be disappointed when some things are harder than I thought.
That’s now why I’m writing now. I just noticed this news story about the prevalence of women in the public sector and I’m just delighted that some people are starting to question affirmative action. I have always been against the idea of giving any group of people preferential treatment based on their gender or race or anything not directly related to the job they’re applying for. I believe we each make our own opportunities based on our own unique set of experiences and challenges, and that’s that.
Véronique adds: Ah, yes, affirmative action. When I saw the front page I thought about the discussion on career prospects. I’m not too hot on affirmative action as a principle although my earlier comments may lead you to believe otherwise. I’m not saying that systemic injustices don’t exist or that wrongs shouldn’t be “righted”. On the other hand, I look at any state interference with suspicion, especially when it comes to picking winners. It’s not only that picking winners creates a whole new class of injustices in response to injustice but it also erodes our collective work ethic. Some people will never get ahead no matter how hard they work; other people will get ahead regardless of how little they work.by