About Jayson Blair's ethnicity: I found out on PBS's News Hour because while the news anchor was questioning the NYT's executive editor, Mr. Blair's Photo was inset in the upper left corner of the picture. But you have a point to question the relevancy of his "racial" background it should not matter and perhaps we can look forward to the day when it will not even enter our prodigies' minds.
But this will only happen if there are no perceived products of AA. As you know, in my tome of a post of Sat May 10, 2003 3:51 pm in this thread I have already made a suggestion as towards how this may be accomplished. Mr. Blair's ethnic background is relevant only because of AA not in spite of it. In that post I had made mention how perhaps such lapses exhibited by Mr. Blair will come back and sink their teeth into proponents of AA's buttocks. I am not alone.
Although many despair William Safire's rightist thoughts, in today's NYT he affords us a deeper insider's view at:
At which we find:
"The Times team investigating the lies of Jayson Blair -- grimly front-paged and spread over four inside pages of yesterday's paper -- found his phony interviews and faked articles "a low point in the 152-year history of the newspaper." The publisher called it "a huge black eye."
How could this happen at the most rigorously edited newspaper in the world? We had plenty of warning: his 50-plus corrections in less than four years as a reporter, his evasion of questions about his whereabouts, complaints from colleagues.
Apparently this 27-year-old was given too many second chances by editors eager for this ambitious black journalist to succeed. As he moved to more responsible assignments, some editors failed to pass along assessments of his past shortcomings while others felt the need to protect the confidentiality of his troubles. Result: the con artist gamed a system that celebrates diversity and opportunity...
...Then to the affirmative-action angle: See what happens, they taunt, when you treat a minority employee with kid gloves, promoting him when he deserves to be fired? Oh, we know your editors insist that "diversity" had nothing to do with it. But remember what Senator Dale Bumpers said about our impeachment of Clinton: "When you hear somebody say, `This is not about sex' -- it's about sex." This is about diversity backfiring..."
So now it is about AA. However if remedies had been taken to remove the race "thing" early enough (education is a good place to start) there would be no ammunition for these slurs and perhaps if this particular reporter was not allowed to "slide" early in his employment (as Mr., Safire has informed us) his laziness could have been corrected without fear of "legal action" against his employer. It would have been better for Mr. Blair had his colleagues actually treated him as if he were really "White" (This could be viewed as moderate "tough love"). In my eyes this reporter was not inferior but just lazy and AA attitudes proscribed the normal corrective features thereby ensuring the observed result; four years of wasted time, money, and Mr. Blair disgraced along with future potential ethnic reporters.
One can only imagine the anger of those like NYT columnist Bob Herbert. Mr. Herbert is a well-respected NYT newspaperman with over 30 years experience in broadcast and print journalism and also... is Black.