Chicago Police May Scrap Entrance Exam. Why? Not enough minorities pass.

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by madanthonywayne, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    The "race-based" discrimination she's denying there refers to the white candidates having their test results discarded. You know, the ones who filed the lawsuit? I.e., Ricci?

    Here's some fuller quotes:

    "the Court pretends that “[t]he City rejected the test results solely because the higher scoring candidates were white.” Ante, at 20. That pretension, essential to the Court’s disposition, ignores substantial evidence of multiple flaws in the tests New Haven used. The Court similarly fails to acknowledge thebetter tests used in other cities, which have yielded lessracially skewed outcomes."

    "New Haven, a city in whichAfrican-Americans and Hispanics account for nearly 60percent of the population, must today be served—as it wasin the days of undisguised discrimination—by a fire de-partment in which members of racial and ethnic minori-ties are rarely seen in command positions."

    "Firefighting is a profession in which thelegacy of racial discrimination casts an especially long shadow."

    "Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) report finding racialdiscrimination in municipal employment even “more pervasive than in the private sector.” H. R. Rep. No. 92– 238, p. 17 (1971). According to the report, overt racismwas partly to blame, but so too was a failure on the part of municipal employers to apply merit-based employment principles. In making hiring and promotion decisions, public employers often “rel[ied] on criteria unrelated to job performance,” including nepotism or political patronage. 118 Cong. Rec. 1817 (1972). Such flawed selection meth-ods served to entrench preexisting racial hierarchies. The USCCR report singled out police and fire departments for having “arriers to equal employment . . . greater . . . than in any other area of State or local government,” withAfrican-Americans “hold[ing] almost no positions in the officer ranks.”"

    "The city of New Haven (City) was no exception. In the early 1970’s, African-Americans and Hispanics composed 30 percent of New Haven’s population, but only 3.6 per-cent of the City’s 502 firefighters. The racial disparity inthe officer ranks was even more pronounced: “[O]f the 107officers in the Department only one was black, and he heldthe lowest rank above private.”"

    "Among entry-level firefighters, minorities are still underrepre-sented, but not starkly so. As of 2003, African-Americans and Hispanics constituted 30 percent and 16 percent of the City’s firefighters, respectively. In supervisory positions,however, significant disparities remain. Overall, the senior officer ranks (captain and higher) are nine percent African-American and nine percent Hispanic. Only one ofthe Department’s 21 fire captains is African-American.See App. in No. 06–4996–cv (CA2), p. A1588 (hereinafter CA2 App.). It is against this backdrop of entrenched inequality that the promotion process at issue in thislitigation should be assessed."

    "Dr. Christo-pher Hornick, an industrial/organizational psychology consultant with 25 years’ experience with police and fire-fighter testing, described the exam results as having“relatively high adverse impact.”"

    "Hornick downplayed the notion of “facial neu-trality.” It was more important, he advised the CSB, toconsider “the broader issue of how your procedures and your rules and the types of tests that you are using arecontributing to the adverse impact.”"

    "Janet Helms, a professor of counseling psychology atBoston College, observed that two-thirds of the incumbent fire officers who submitted job analyses to IOS during the exam design phase were Caucasian. Members of different racial groups, Helms told the CSB, sometimes do their jobs in different ways, “often because the experiences that are open to white male firefighters are not open to members of these other under-represented groups.” CA2 App. A1063–A1064. The heavy reliance on job analyses from whitefirefighters, she suggested, may thus have introduced an element of bias."

    "(“Upon close reading of the exams, thequestions themselves would appear to test a candidate’s ability to memorize textbooks but not necessarily to iden-tify solutions to real problems on the fire ground.”"

    "In codifying the Griggs and Albemarle instructions, Congress declared unambiguously that selection criteriaoperating to the disadvantage of minority group members can be retained only if justified by business necessity.5 In keeping with Congress’ design, employers who reject such criteria due to reasonable doubts about their reliability can hardly be held to have engaged in discrimination“because of” race."

    "Indeed, the sole basis for the Court’s peremptory ruling is the demonstrably false pretension that respondents showed “nothing more” than “a signifi-cant statistical disparity.”"

    "Applying what I view as the proper standard to therecord thus far made, I would hold that New Haven had ample cause to believe its selection process was flawed and not justified by business necessity."

    "Alerted to this stark disparity, the CSB heard expert and lay testimony, presented at public hear-ings, in an endeavor to ascertain whether the exams were fair and consistent with business necessity. Its investiga-tion revealed grave cause for concern about the exam process itself and the City’s failure to consider alternativeselection devices.
    Chief among the City’s problems was the very nature of the tests for promotion. In choosing to use written andoral exams with a 60/40 weighting, the City simply ad-hered to the union’s preference and apparently gave no consideration to whether the weighting was likely to identify the most qualified fire-officer candidates. There is strong reason to think it was not."

    "Given these unfavorable appraisals, it is unsurprising that most municipal employers do not evaluate their fire-officer candidates as New Haven does."

    "Testimony beforethe CSB also raised questions concerning unequal access to study materials, see id., at A857–A861, and the poten-tial bias introduced by relying principally on job analyses from nonminority fire officers to develop the exams,"

    "to study materials, see id., at A857–A861, and the poten-tial bias introduced by relying principally on job analyses from nonminority fire officers to develop the exams,"

    Isn't that what I've been doing? And why would those two options be exclusive anyway?

    As discussed in the quoted material from Ginsburg's dissent, there is an extreme racial disparity in the officer ranks in the New Haven fire department (this was a test for promotion to officer status). This is an elementary fact of the case, known to anyone who cares to learn the basics. No assumptions on my part are involved.

    It's applicable to the analogous situation I was using to illustrate why the test is unfair, and which you are so far entirely unable to address, responding instead with bizarre accusations of "hearsay." Weak evasion, I'd say.

    That sentence doesn't make sense. You appear to be confused about what constitutes a "conclusion." Or perhaps a "fact." Either way.

    Riiiiight. Perhaps you've heard of the phrase "magical thinking?"

    If so, you should be aware that it's generally considered a character flaw.

    Sure you wouldn't like to edit out that response and start over again?

    How do you know the test was difficult, or that the applicants were unqualified?

    "Better" here means "less racially biased." Are you no longer excluding that possibility?

    You say that, but I have yet to see you disclaim any of the elements there.

    So what?

    Not true. In the first place, the US Supreme Court is not a police agency that searches for evidence. In the second place, the Supreme Court wasn't even considering the question of whether the test was fair as such, but rather whether New Haven's designation of it as unfair was a violation of the rights of Ricci and his pals.

    Not the city of New Haven. Their doing the right thing here is what landed them in front of the Supreme Court, where they lost.

    Wait, weren't you just decrying as a strawman the idea that you presume black people are stupid without any real evidence?

    Right, Ricci won his lawsuit. What did you think was going to happen?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2010
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  3. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Well said. This nonsense that any test that all races don't pass at an equal rate is unfair is idiotic bullshit.

    IF these people would spend more time studying and less time making excuses for their failure they might pass the damned test.
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  5. Scaramouche Registered Member

    And as I said, that was the dissenting opinion of Ginsburg.

    Ok, blame me as well if you want. It makes this funnier.

    A racial disparity does not justify the two assertions you made:

    You're assuming none of the black firefighters had relatives, friends, or other associates involved in firefighting who might assist them.

    You're also assuming all the white firefighters had relatives, friends, or other associates involved in firefighting who might assist them.

    Especially when the facts show that the black firefighters simply failed. That's what is the blame here. Not any secret conspiracy.

    Hey, you can make shit up all day long about teaching at university, but you're still just making shit up.

    Not at all. I don't make shit up about teaching classes. I don't invent conspiracy theories about some secret hidden cabal of white firefighters rigging exams to keep the black man down. I stick with the facts: the US Supreme Court found the exams were fair, unbiased. That's the fact. That's my opinion.

    I'm just awesome like that.

    Not at all. I was pretty clear all the way along. My conclusion regarding the other tests was that more people passed. That's all. And that's a fact.

    I know they failed.

    Hey, that's your assertion, it's your job to support it.

    That's ok, I have yet to see you support your conspiracy theory.

    So grow the fuck up and stop whining about evil white man conspiracy theories.

    Actually the Supreme Court examines all evidence brought before it (including laws and precedents) and then makes a decision. That is specifically what they do.

    They're, mister university teacher.

    New Haven has reinstated the exam results and promoted a bunch of the New Haven 20.

    See, that's a straw man. I didn't say black people are stupid. I said those black firefighters need to be smarter.

    Actually I would have expected the decision to go the other way, specifically because our governments tend to cater to minorities as much as possible, at the expense of fairness and sense.
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  7. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    (Insert Title Here)

    Bitter, racist presumptuousness, to the one, and plain ignorance to the other.

    Ever pay attention to an American judicial nomination and confirmation fight? In a way, this demonstrates the reason. You'll often hear conservatives complain about liberal "activist" judges who "rule by judicial fiat" and "legislate from the bench". In this case, of course, we have a conservative majority that presumed in contravention of the facts, rejected legislative authority, and overturned forty-plus years of constitutional judicial precedent. Yet the conservatives aren't complaining about judicial activism or legislation from the bench because they got the racist outcome they wanted.

    It's an example of why one of the reasons I'm not a conservative is that I can't bring myself to be dishonest enough to satisfy the demands of such an outlook.
  8. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    The pendulum is now swinging the other way. Better get used to it or you'll be bitter and unhappy for the rest of your life.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

  9. Scaramouche Registered Member

    Dude, the US Supreme Court looked at the actual facts and handed down a decision. Another fact is that you disagree with them. Another fact is that you claim there are facts of which you are aware but they were not, or which they chose to ignore; but I don't see you supporting that assertion.

    Is claiming the judges are evil Conservatives, and Conservatives are evil racists, really all that's left?

    As for me, you have no idea what my beliefs or political leanings are. like most people, you form your opinions not based on facts, but on your perceptions.
  10. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    (Insert Title Here)

    Um ... duh.

    To be specific, I disagree with the 55.5% majority in this case.

    Please note those.

    I don't know. Who's claiming that?

    I'm of the opinion that your beliefs and political leanings are expressed in your words, which I evaluate according to my opinion. And it is a fact that you are making insupportable assertions in order to support your opinion that the black firefighters were just inferior. And it is a fact that I consider such rhetoric racist.
  11. Scaramouche Registered Member

    Gotta love democracy.

    "presumed in contravention of the facts"

    "Yet the conservatives aren't complaining about judicial activism or legislation from the bench because they got the racist outcome they wanted."

    Feel free to rephrase or whatever suits you.

    Some guys failed a test. I said they were inferior to those who passed the test. How is that racist?

    PS: If you're wondering, I don't give a rat's arse about their race. What matters is they're whining bitches who failed and can't deal with it, and want to get the courts to give them a free pass.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2010
  12. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    (Insert Title Here)

    There is no guarantee that any one of those candidates would have been promoted. Simply passing the exam does not earn the promotion.

    I believe it's your obligation to establish how the sentence noted equals, "the judges are evil Conservatives, and Conservatives are evil racists".

    Black, inferior. Two plus two?

    You cannot demonstrate that the test was fair, especially with the designer of the test admitting that it was flawed in the ways it was.

    If you had better understanding of American constitutional law, you would recognize how important that fact is to the case.
  13. Scaramouche Registered Member

    Lucky a bunch of them got promoted then.

    Hey, you said it was a racist outcome. I don't know why you made the claim.

    If you want to equate the two things, black and inferior, that's your choice. To me, the fact that the failures were black has nothing to do with them failing. I think you really need to take a look at yourself and ask yourself why you equate the two things.

    The test was not the best test, the designers and the judges said that. But it was fair. Every one of the candidates was given the same test, and it did not in any way favour any particular group of those candidates.

    Apparently I get it about as much as the US Supreme Court does, because they didn't see any racism against those black guys either.
  14. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    I've followed the case in Connecticut since the very beginning and have not come across this before.

    Can you provide evidence to support that statement??
  15. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    For starters

    Please see #20 above.
  16. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Thank you. I came into the thread late and overlooked that post.
  17. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

    so if the majority of girls in my daughters class flunk a test that the majority of boys pass, there must be something wrong with the test?
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    That's a bit of a leap

    Not must, but may.
  19. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

    oh. well, don't they change tests for the sexes? I mean, they do sports. Women tee off from a different spot then men do.
  20. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Valued Senior Member

    (Insert Title Here)

    If it's something like personal hygiene, that might be a good idea.

    Math? Spelling? That's a harder case to make.

    I would note, though, that golf isn't necessarily the best analogy, since anyone can apply a "handicap" adjustment to their score. In theory, the women's tee is just another handicap adjustment designed to reflect expectations of par. Just like most of the golf courses around here have "pro" tees; the casual golfer is not obliged to use that tee in order to meet expectation of par.
  21. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

    so have they ever changed how much weight a male or female fireman had to carry? Or how fast a male or female cop had to run?
  22. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Those are your strawman assertions. I never made them. I asserted that white firefighters were substantially more likely to have family and friends in firefighter officer positions to help them out. Nothing you've said contradicts this.

    The question is whether the test was fair. Nobody is disputing the fact that the black applicants did not pass. The "simply" is precisely what's at issue here. And given that it took a split decision by the SCOTUS to decide that issue, it can hardly be considered unequivocable.

    I have taught university classes, and personally know many people who have done the same. Why you insist this is a pretence is puzzling.

    Nor I.

    It isn't secret or hidden. It's out in the open, sanctioned by a Supreme Court packed with right-wing ideologues.

    Your opinion is that this is a fact? Facts aren't the sort of thing that generally require the formulation of an opinion. Which begs the question of what you think you're talking about.

    It is indeed a fact, and so not a conclusion, or an opinion, or a hypothesis, or whatever. You did, however, venture a conclusion based on that fact, which was that the test was easier, and not that the candidates were more qualified. Which begs the question of how you eliminated the latter explanation; no reasoning is in evidence for your conclusion.

    No you haven't.

    No, "their" was the correct usage in that quote.

    I'm getting close to the point of concluding from your hostility about this topic and your poor comprehension and writing skills that this series of responses is a long-winded way of answering "no" to the question of whether you've ever taken university classes.

    And, by the way, I've years since moved on to a non-teaching career in the private sector.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2010
  23. Scaramouche Registered Member

    Nothing you've said supports your assertion in regards to this case.

    A dissenting voice doesn't change the fact that the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of the New Haven 20. The test was fair.

    Yeah, I'm sure you have. Really.

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    My opinions are only ever based on facts. If the fact is the sky is blue, then my opinion is the sky is blue. And the fact is the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of the New Haven 20.

    Actually it's a fact and an opinion and a conclusion.

    Actually we've been over this. If you have two tests, X and Y, and more people pass Y than X, the causes will be either that Y is easier than X, or the people taking test Y were better than those taking test X.

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    Apologies, I misread.

    Hey, I'm not the guy claiming evil right-wing conspiracies in the halls of justice.

    I'm sure.

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