After the Vietnam War, when I was finally able to look for a job I wanted, I began interviewing at all high-tech companies in my hometown, Atlanta. Some of those companies sent me to other locations for interviews, on their nickel, some of them multiple times at short notice. I took their tests and aced them. But no job offers. I interviewed for more than a year.
Fortunately, I was working in two other jobs and scheduling my interviews around those two jobs. One job was direct sales in advertising; I sold ads on direct commission, no salary or benefits and I paid my own expenses. The second job was selling men’s clothing with a salary and commission. This second job I was fortunate to get first, because I had no clothing suitable for the first job interviews or my desired job in high tech. The owner of the men’s clothing store was my Sunday school teacher years before in my pre-teens. Thanks Ham! (He may be reading this.)
Finally, one of the companies where I really wanted to work called and gave me a plane ticket for an interview at one of their facilities outside Philadelphia. I had to be there at a specific time and date. I went for the interview and was hired on the spot, but I had to report to work in no more than 3 days, and my salary was $13,000, which was less than half of what I was making in the advertising job alone. But, I took the job. It was the job I wanted at a good company. So, I flew back to Atlanta, got my things and drove to the plant in Avondale, Pennsylvania. I reported to work a day ahead of schedule and found a place to live through one of my new colleagues there.
All was going well at my new job. Within months, I got a couple of salary increases. Then my colleague said he needed to move his family into the place I was renting from him. So, I found an apartment. Things continued to go well at work. It was the summer of 1976, hot and humid. I was swimming in the pool at the apartment complex and began chatting with a lady there, who as it turned out lived in the apartment below mine. We got to know each other better and discovered that we both worked at the same company in the same location. Small world. It turned out that she was the H.R. manager at the company. I worked in the lab. She thought she had met everyone at the plant. But we had not met. I told her that I had started about 6 months prior.
I have already left out a lot of detail, and this is getting long, so I will get right to the point. The company had flown me to be interviewed and to be hired and to report to work while the H.R. manager was on her two-week vacation. I did not know that.
I also did not know that affirmative action laws in place at the time meant that those companies which I had spent more than a year interviewing were unable to hire me and unable to tell me that. They had federally enforced hiring quotas to hire only minorities and women.
You see, I am a white man.
Groupings and affirmative action programs are collectivist (Marxist/socialist) programs, fantasies really. They are double-edged swords. Theoretically, all those companies I interviewed found someone to hire who was not a white man. We will never know.
I know that I was harmed in the process, and those employers probably were harmed, and the U.S. Constitution was infringed because we were not treated equally under the law as the Constitution requires. They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions and I know it to be true.
Recently, the collectivist, so-called “progressive,” social justice, Democrats are going after white men again, calling us entitled, racists or worse. Who else is being harmed in this process? At what cost? Who is being helped? At what cost? Is it worth it?
I think it is virtue signalling. If employers were allowed to hire the best person for the job, it is a safe assumption that their business would grown faster or be more profitable and then there would be more jobs.