The great irony of “anti-discrimination” laws is that they
usually harm those they are nominally meant to help.
This was illustrated perfectly by the news that British
women are actually less
likely to reach the top of major organisations than before.
The media expressed dutiful shock at this trend despite the
pile of “anti-discrimination” laws that is constantly being passed. Needless to
say, no one was allowed to suggest that the trend was not in spite of those
laws but because of those laws.
Instead the predictable response from the Establishment was
that more laws were needed!
In fact, private business has always been inclined to appoint
on the basis of merit when left to its own devices – enlightened self-interest
dictates that one hires the best – but has become increasingly wary of hiring people
who might launch expensive and vexatious law suits against their employers.
No one is allowed to admit it. It is not – yet – illegal to
tell the truth, but anyone who does is liable to have his words used against
him when some disgruntled employee or past employee seeks revenge in a civil
court or tribunal.
A Member of the European Parliament who, unlike most of the
breed, had practical experience of business dared to point out that, given
current legislation on maternity rights, no one
in their right mind would employ a woman in her fertile years if there was
any reasonable alternative.
Needless to say, there were squeals of outrage on all sides
– but it is the “anti-discrimination” laws favoured by the squealers, rather
than any imagined prejudice on the part of entrepreneurs, that makes his comments
worth a second thought.