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While I disagree with your post, I think you make a peculiar error to which I am responding (and it is this error that is the source of my disagreement), and my post will only make sense in the context of this thread. Furthermore, I too am advocating for constructive change, just of a different sort. By adherence to what I see as the spirit of your request (discussing constructive action) I hope I may justify a lack of adherence to to the letter of your request.

What kind of constructive action am I advocating? Nothing less than to continue the argument, in the most charitable and reasonable spirit we can attain. We are arguing about the most important of things: our moral aim. That is, "what is it we ought to do?" Should we promote diversity in computing? Tied up with this question of aims is the question of facts, namely: "Does promoting the politically correct notion of diversity mean the same as promoting the kind of diversity which will make computing as a profession more capable at achieving its ends?" Certainly, if there is a kind of diversity that brings the profession of computing closer to its ends (whatever those may be, and that too is in question) then I imagine that promoting such diversity is considered wise by all here.

What is primarily in debate is whether or not politically correct diversity (diversity of gender and race, primarily) is the same as effective diversity. If, like you seem to think, both kinds of diversity are the same, then doing what you suggest is in fact constructive. However, if politically correct diversity is orthogonal or (Ada Lovelace forbid) contrary to effective diversity, then your actions will be at best ineffective and at worst destructive. The whole point of this argument is that we want our profession to do what is constructive, and recognize that we need to sort out as a profession what in fact is constructive.

Hacker News is a great place to have this kind of discussion since a) you have willing and able participants, and b) the clear tree structure of posts helps considerably since well-formed arguments all tend to take such a structure. There are other sites for discussing what "can/should be done (or what you are already doing)" for a particular agenda.

The attitude you give off in your post is one of "deeds, not words", which in my experience is equivalent to an attitude of "words, not thoughts". You are dealing with a crowd which is perhaps best known acting upon those beliefs of which they have been rationally convinced. Do you not agree that it is better for people to hold and act upon beliefs of which they have been convinced by means of reason? If so, why then do you speak so glibly of "tak[ing] apart the logic, rhetoric, and nitpick[ing] every word" which is nothing less then the process of analytic reasoning? If not, why are you here?

P.S. Note that I have not actually taken a stance on the issue in question in this post.




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