Dawkins is firmly in favour of equality of opportunity. He does not support the idea of selecting individuals on the basis of race or skin colour. In fact, he calls it out for what it is: racism.
I’ve spoken to many fair-minded and compassionate people who share his view. But few dare say so publicly – for understandable reasons. Who wants to risk losing their job, being misunderstood, ostracised and smeared as racist? Our institutions must be in a sorry state indeed if saying something so strikingly obvious to many carries such personal and professional risks.
I loved Dawkins’ unapologetic response when in the interview Freddie suggested he may be in the minority for expressing such a view: “Well then, I’m proud to be in a minority.”
So am I, if indeed it is a minority. And it is so good to hear someone in Dawkins’ position speak up on this issue, which has affected many of us personally. It’s an issue about which there has been no debate, and frankly a refusal to acknowledge and respond to concerns and arguments raised.
On my Substack, I’ve tried to highlight some of the costs that preferential treatment based on race can present for someone from a racial or ethnic minority background – how it can undermine human dignity and removes the right to equal treatment and fair competition with others without regard to race. In my view, this is totally unacceptable. A person’s or group’s dignity and rights as equal citizens should not be sacrificed and overridden in an attempt to achieve set proportions of racial characteristics in different settings. There is something wrong with that kind of ‘social justice’. And besides, racial discrimination simply cannot be the normal state of affairs in a liberal democratic society. The two are incompatible.
I truly hope that the tide is turning and more people from within our institutions will begin to voice concerns over this issue, and that those in positions of power will begin to listen.
There are better ways to address disadvantage and create a fairer society.
For now – thank you, Professor Dawkins.
This article first appeared on Amber Muhinyi’s Substack.