Is Equality Good?

Is Equality a good thing in and of itself?

Trevor Phillips was on Radio 4 this morning. As head of the Commission for Racial Equality he has been the least irritating and least pinko-nutty in that position. Some times I even agree with him!

But today he gave an example saying that our great great grandchildren will still elect people to a House of Commons that is not gender balanced. Why is this a bad thing? As a believer in the ultimate equality, I can see no benefit to making the House of Commons equal in gender, race, religion or gender preference. Equality should mean that everyone has an equal chance given their own abilities, not that we should have an equal or proportional number of people from specific groups in all places.

If it is, as I suspect, that women are less likely to apply to be MPs, then it will either be that there are more men in the House of Commons or, through meddling, that less able women are getting seats to create some perverted form of 'balance'.

No, equality is mostly about leaving well alone.

If someone has an advantage in life because of their parent's wealth I say good luck to them. Sorry for the person on the sink estate, but if you want to improve your lot (and you must, surely) then you will probably have to work harder than someone whose parents can afford private tuition in the evening.

Should public schools be as good as private schools? Yes, but they're not going to be all the time we have ideologues saying to schools, you mustn't discriminate on ability. Grammar schools are the best tool for social mobility but they're gone in most places and that is the fault of the supposedly progressive left-wing.

Ideally everyone would have the same chances but that is not how society works when left to its own devices. The solution is to make everyone's access to education etc. as equal as possible. The answer is not to punish people for making a lot of money and the answer is not to make decisions based on some arbitrary feature (like gender) to try to ensure that perverted equality I mentioned earlier.

Now comment people!


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