Here’s a little known fact about human beings. They compete for resources, certainly, but also for higher positions in the social pecking order. That is, I could have made more money in the private sector – still could, in fact – but I prefer the social standing, such as it is, of a university professor.
Until recently – say fifty years ago – positions of both material and social privilege have been reserved for able-bodied heterosexual white males like me, in large measure because of the political privilege of able-bodied heterosexual white males like me. But the balance of political power has been shifting, and now, dammit, disabled lesbian black women are clamouring for a turn.
No skin off my ass, since I’m tenured and in the autumn of my career. But I do wish our administrators would be honest about the adoption of quota hiring being political rather than academic, and that they’d stop pretending that this purely cosmetic hiring is a metonym for perspectival diversity. If they were truly looking for perspectival diversity they’d be hiring a member of the Alt-Right, or a thrice-convicted pedophile. So what they’re looking for, quite clearly, are candidates who fit the cosmetic profile, yes, but also who fall within an acceptable range of orthodoxy.
I mean this not as a criticism. If I were on the hiring committee for Philosophy I’d make it clear that no Continentalist need apply. So I too would impose my own range of orthodoxy. So the problem with coming up with a short list, if and when the opportunity arises, is that there are precious few if any disabled lesbian black women Analytics to choose from.
Do university administrators know they’re being less than honest? I hope they do, since the alternative is to conclude that they’re too stupid to pee. Mind you, you know what they say. Those who can’t do teach, and those who can’t teach administrate.