Sunday, April 30, 2006


I'm doing some proofreading this afternoon, and after reviewing the key story in this newsletter, I have to get something off my chest:

I really, really dislike the use of the word "diverse" to mean "non-Caucasian" — or, more specifically, "not a white male."

I applaud efforts to create an ethnically, religiously, geographically, sexually diverse workforce, such as the company I'm reading for is making. But I want more than effort. I want honesty.

If you mean non-white, say non-white. If you mean female, say female. If you mean gay, say gay. Don't hide behind "diverse." Name the people you're talking about. Acknowledge them. See them. Include them.

Don't lump them all together under a single heading that means "not like me."


  • When I graduated from college and was looking for an apartment in Minneapolis, the woman at Apartment Search used "diverse" as a code for "bad neighborhood" (because they're not allowed to tell you straight-out that something is a "bad" neighborhood). My roommate and I were straight out of our liberal-arts education, and completely missed the code... "It's a diverse neighborhood? Wow, that sounds great! Sign us up!"

    By Blogger Ethelred, at 8:11 AM  

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