[EDEQUITY Discussion]Opening Statement for Career Education

From: Amber Valeris DeWine (Your_Honor@mail.findlaw.com.criticalpath.net)
Date: Wed Aug 09 2000 - 10:04:50 EDT

I'm concerned about the apparent misuse of the word "segregation." When
I think of segregation I think of Governor George Wallace standing at the
schoolhouse doors refusing to allow little black children to go inside. I
think of black-only and white-only bathrooms, water fountains, etc. I
think of Jim Crow.

  Those little black children were "segregated." They did not CHOOSE not
to go to the white school, they were told that they were not permitted to.

  Black people did not CHOOSE to have their own bathrooms and water
fountains; they were told that they could not use the same bathrooms and
water fountains as white people.

  All the black people before Rosa Parks did not CHOOSE to give up their
seats to white people, they were told that they had to.

  Now let's compare this to women's situation and this constant use of the
very charged term "segregation." I know of no educational institution in
the United States that forces its students into majors or specific
curricula. If University X said "Women may only go into fields D, E, and F
whereas men can go into any field they want to" THAT would be segregation.

  Let's get one thing clear right now. Women are grown people who make
their own CHOICES in life. This is not SEGREGATION, this is freedom. This
is freedom of CHOICE. Our education, our CHOICE. Our career, our CHOICE.
Women choose certain majors more than men do, and men choose certain majors
more than women do. This is not a situation of the college conscripting
men or women into majors, it is a situation of being given freedom of
choice. It seems as if when there is any instance of men and women being
different in any way, the radical feminists seem to decry it as a form of
"oppression" or "segregation" instead of calling it what it is, DIFFERENCE.

  Why is difference necessarily a bad thing in the eyes of the feminists?
I once heard a very wise woman give the following saying: One of the most
beautiful things in the world is the vast field of stars set against the
dark night sky. But are the stars not there in the daytime? The stars are
always there, it's just when their light contrasts with the darkness of a
night sky that they are beautiful. If everything is all the same, it is
not beautiful. It's just plain.

  I celebrate the differences in all of us. I would not be happy if
everyone in the world were just like Amber Valeris DeWine (and I'm sure the
feminists would not be either). I would not even be happy if every man in
the world were exactly like Ethan Shawn Tower, my fiancee. Instead of
bemoaning our differences as "oppression" and "segregation" we should be
embracing them and celebrating them. Vive la diference!

  If a woman is unhappy with her choice, she has no one to blame but
herself, because it was she, no one else, who made the choice. Just like
if a man is unhappy with his choice he has no one to blame but himself.
because it was he, no one else, who made the choice. Stop trying to put
the blame on other people or some apocryphal "patriarchy." I am a firm
believer in taking responsibility for what you do and taking responsibility
for the choices you make.

Amber Valeris DeWine

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