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SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

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The Cat-Tribe
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Founded: Jan 18, 2005
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:25 pm

DMistan wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:I tire of this nonsense. I never said that the racial impact of the test was irrelevant. It WAS the main issue.


How's that pWnage taste?


Um. What pWnage?

I've been saying the same thing all along. The idea that racial impact was the only thing considered by the City or the courts is not just untrue, but a vicious lie. Whether the test was an accurate measurement of qualifications WAS an issue.

How's that pWnage taste?
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

User avatar
The Cat-Tribe
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Founded: Jan 18, 2005
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:29 pm

Fine. Let's give this some fucking context. Sorry, but this will take more than one post. The following is from the 4-Justice dissent:

Firefighting is a profession in which the legacy of racial discrimination casts an especially long shadow. In extending Title VII to state and local government employers in 1972, Congress took note of a U. S. Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR) report finding racial discrimination in municipal employment even “more pervasive than in the private sector.” H. R. Rep. No. 92– 238, p. 17 (1971). According to the report, overt racism was partly to blame, but so too was a failure on the part of municipal employers to apply merit-based employment principles. In making hiring and promotion decisions, public employers often “rel[ied] on criteria unrelated to job performance,” including nepotism or political patronage. 118 Cong. Rec. 1817 (1972). Such flawed selection methods served to entrench preexisting racial hierarchies. The USCCR report singled out police and fire departments for having “[b]arriers to equal employment . . . greater . . . than in any other area of State or local government,” with African-Americans “hold[ing] almost no positions in the officer ranks.” Ibid. See also National Commission on Fire Prevention and Control, America Burning 5 (1973) (“Racial minorities are under-represented in the fire departments in nearly every community in which they live.”).

The city of New Haven (City) was no exception. In the early 1970’s, African-Americans and Hispanics composed 30 percent of New Haven’s population, but only 3.6 percent of the City’s 502 firefighters. The racial disparity in the officer ranks was even more pronounced: “[O]f the 107officers in the Department only one was black, and he held the lowest rank above private.” Firebird Soc. of New Haven, Inc. v. New Haven Bd. of Fire Comm’rs, 66 F. R. D. 457, 460 (Conn. 1975). Following a lawsuit and settlement agreement, see ibid., the City initiated efforts to increase minority representation in the New Haven Fire Department (Department). Those litigation-induced efforts produced some positive change. New Haven’s population includes a greater proportion of minorities today than it did in the 1970’s: Nearly 40 percent of the City’s residents are African-American and more than 20 percent are Hispanic. Among entry-level firefighters, minorities are still underrepresented, but not starkly so. As of 2003, African-Americans and Hispanics constituted 30 percent and 16 percent of the City’s firefighters, respectively. In supervisory positions, however, significant disparities remain. Overall, the senior officer ranks (captain and higher) are nine percent African-American and nine percent Hispanic. Only one of the Department’s 21 fire captains is African-American. See App. in No. 06–4996–cv (CA2), p. A1588 (hereinafter CA2 App.). It is against this backdrop of entrenched inequality that the promotion process at issue in this litigation should be assessed.

By order of its charter, New Haven must use competitive examinations to fill vacancies in fire officer and other civil-service positions. Such examinations, the City’s civil service rules specify, “shall be practical in nature, shall relate to matters which fairly measure the relative fitness and capacity of the applicants to discharge the duties of the position which they seek, and shall take into account character, training, experience, physical and mental fitness.” Id., at A331. The City may choose among a variety of testing methods, including written and oral exams and “[p]erformance tests to demonstrate skill and ability in performing actual work.” Id., at A332. New Haven, the record indicates, did not closely consider what sort of “practical” examination would “fairly measure the relative fitness and capacity of the applicants to discharge the duties” of a fire officer. Instead, the City simply adhered to the testing regime outlined in its two decades-old contract with the local firefighters’ union: a written exam, which would account for 60 percent of an applicant’s total score, and an oral exam, which would account for the remaining 40 percent. Id., at A1045. In soliciting bids from exam development companies, New Haven made clear that it would entertain only “proposals that include a written component that will be weighted at 60%, and an oral component that will be weighted at 40%.” Id., at A342. Chad Legel, a representative of the winning bidder, Industrial/Organizational Solutions, Inc. (IOS), testified during his deposition that the City never asked whether alternative methods might better measure the qualities of a successful fire officer, including leadership skills and command presence. See id., at A522 (“I was under contract and had responsibility only to create the oral interview and the written exam.”).

Pursuant to New Haven’s specifications, IOS developed and administered the oral and written exams. The results showed significant racial disparities. On the lieutenant exam, the pass rate for African-American candidates was about one-half the rate for Caucasian candidates; the pass rate for Hispanic candidates was even lower. On the captain exam, both African-American and Hispanic candidates passed at about half the rate of their Caucasian counterparts. See App. 225–226. More striking still, although nearly half of the 77 lieutenant candidates were African-American or Hispanic, none would have been eligible for promotion to the eight positions then vacant. The highest scoring African-American candidate ranked13th; the top Hispanic candidate was 26th. As for the seven then-vacant captain positions, two Hispanic candidates would have been eligible, but no African-Americans. The highest scoring African-American candidate ranked 15th. See id., at 218–219.

These stark disparities, the Court acknowledges, sufficed to state a prima facie case under Title VII’s disparate-impact provision. See ante, at 27 (“The pass rates of minorities . . . f[e]ll well below the 80-percent standard set by the [Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)] to implement the disparate-impact provision of Title VII.”). New Haven thus had cause for concern about the prospect of Title VII litigation and liability. City officials referred the matter to the New Haven Civil Service Board (CSB), the entity responsible for certifying the results of employment exams.
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:34 pm

Between January and March 2004, the CSB held five public meetings to consider the proper course. At the first meeting, New Haven’s Corporation Counsel, Thomas Ude, described the legal standard governing Title VII disparate impact claims. Statistical imbalances alone, Ude correctly recognized, do not give rise to liability. Instead, presented with a disparity, an employer “has the opportunity and the burden of proving that the test is job-related and consistent with business necessity.” CA2 App. A724. A Title VII plaintiff may attempt to rebut an employer’s showing of job-relatedness and necessity by identifying alternative selection methods that would have been at least as valid but with “less of an adverse or disparate or discriminatory effect.” Ibid. See also id., at A738. Accordingly, the CSB Commissioners understood, their principal task was to decide whether they were confident about the reliability of the exams: Had the exams fairly measured the qualities of a successful fire officer despite their disparate results? Might an alternative examination process have identified the most qualified candidates without creating such significant racial imbalances?

Seeking a range of input on these questions, the CSB heard from test takers, the test designer, subject-matter experts, City officials, union leaders, and community members. Several candidates for promotion, who did not yet know their exam results, spoke at the CSB’s first two meetings. Some candidates favored certification. The exams, they emphasized, had closely tracked the assigned study materials. Having invested substantial time and money to prepare themselves for the test, they felt it would be unfair to scrap the results. See, e.g., id., at A772–A773, A785–A789.

Other firefighters had a different view. A number of the exam questions, they pointed out, were not germane to New Haven’s practices and procedures. See, e.g., id., at A774–A784. At least two candidates opposed to certification noted unequal access to study materials. Some individuals, they asserted, had the necessary books even before the syllabus was issued. Others had to invest substantial sums to purchase the materials and “wait a month and a half for some of the books because they were on back-order.” Id., at A858. These disparities, it was suggested, fell at least in part along racial lines. While many Caucasian applicants could obtain materials and assistance from relatives in the fire service, the overwhelming majority of minority applicants were “first generation firefighters” without such support networks. See id., at A857–A861, A886–A887.

A representative of the Northeast Region of the International Association of Black Professional Firefighters, Donald Day, also spoke at the second meeting. Statistical disparities, he told the CSB, had been present in the Department’s previous promotional exams. On earlier tests, however, a few minority candidates had fared well enough to earn promotions. Id., at A828. See also App.218–219. Day contrasted New Haven’s experience with that of nearby Bridgeport, where minority firefighters held one-third of lieutenant and captain positions. Bridgeport, Day observed, had once used a testing process similar to New Haven’s, with a written exam accounting for 70 percent of an applicant’s score, an oral exam for 25 percent, and seniority for the remaining five percent. CA2 App. A830. Bridgeport recognized, however, that the oral component, more so than the written component, addressed the sort of “real-life scenarios” fire officers encounter on the job. Id., at A832. Accordingly, that city “changed the relative weights” to give primacy to the oral exam. Ibid. Since that time, Day reported, Bridgeport had seen minorities “fairly represented” in its exam results. Ibid.

The CSB’s third meeting featured IOS representative Legel, the leader of the team that had designed and administered the exams for New Haven. Several City officials also participated in the discussion. Legel described the exam development process in detail. The City, he recounted, had set the “parameters” for the exams, specifically, the requirement of written and oral components with a 60/40 weighting. Id., at A923, A974. For security reasons, Department officials had not been permitted to check the content of the questions prior to their administration. Instead, IOS retained a senior fire officer from Georgia to review the exams “for content and fidelity to the source material.” Id., at A936. Legel defended the exams as “facially neutral,” and stated that he “would stand by the[ir] validity.” Id., at A962. City officials did not dispute the neutrality of IOS’s work. But, they cautioned, even if individual exam questions had no intrinsic bias, the selection process as a whole may nevertheless have been deficient. The officials urged the CSB to consult with experts about the “larger picture.” Id., at A1012.

At its fourth meeting, CSB solicited the views of three individuals with testing-related expertise. Dr. Christopher Hornick, an industrial/organizational psychology consultant with 25 years’ experience with police and firefighter testing, described the exam results as having “relatively high adverse impact.” Id., at A1028. Most of the tests he had developed, Hornick stated, exhibited “significantly and dramatically less adverse impact.” Id., at A1029. Hornick downplayed the notion of “facial neutrality.” It was more important, he advised the CSB, to consider “the broader issue of how your procedures and your rules and the types of tests that you are using are contributing to the adverse impact.” Id., at A1038.

Specifically, Hornick questioned New Haven’s union prompted 60/40 written/oral examination structure, noting the availability of “different types of testing procedures that are much more valid in terms of identifying the best potential supervisors in [the] fire department.” Id., at A1032. He suggested, for example, “an assessment center process, which is essentially an opportunity for candidates. . . to demonstrate how they would address a particular problem as opposed to just verbally saying it or identifying the correct option on a written test.” Id., at A1039–A1040. Such selection processes, Hornick said, better “identif[y]the best possible people” and “demonstrate dramatically less adverse impacts.” Ibid. Hornick added:

“I’ve spoken to at least 10,000, maybe 15,000 firefighters in group settings in my consulting practice and I have never one time ever had anyone in the fire service say to me, ‘Well, the person who answers—gets the highest score on a written job knowledge, multiple-guess test makes the best company officer.’ We know that it’s not as valid as other procedures that exist.” Id., at A1033.


See also id., at A1042–A1043 (“I think a person’s leadership skills, their command presence, their interpersonal skills, their management skills, their tactical skills could have been identified and evaluated in a much more appropriate way.”).

Hornick described the written test itself as “reasonably good,” id., at A1041, but he criticized the decision not to allow Department officials to check the content. According to Hornick, this “inevitably” led to “test[ing] for processes and procedures that don’t necessarily match up into the department.” Id., at A1034–A1035. He preferred “experts from within the department who have signed confidentiality agreements . . . to make sure that the terminology and equipment that’s being identified from standardized reading sources apply to the department.” Id., at A1035.

Asked whether he thought the City should certify the results, Hornick hedged: “There is adverse impact in the test. That will be identified in any proceeding that you have. You will have industrial psychology experts, if it goes to court, on both sides. And it will not be a pretty or comfortable position for anyone to be in.” Id., at A1040– A1041. Perhaps, he suggested, New Haven might certify the results but immediately begin exploring “alternativeways to deal with these issues” in the future. Id., at A1041.

The two other witnesses made relatively brief appearances. Vincent Lewis, a specialist with the Department of Homeland Security and former fire officer in Michigan, believed the exams had generally tested relevant material, although he noted a relatively heavy emphasis on questions pertaining to being an “apparatus driver.” He suggested that this may have disadvantaged test takers “who had not had the training or had not had an opportunity to drive the apparatus.” Id., at A1051. He also urged the CSB to consider whether candidates had, in fact, enjoyed equal access to the study materials. Ibid. Cf. supra, at 7.

Janet Helms, a professor of counseling psychology at Boston College, observed that two-thirds of the incumbent fire officers who submitted job analyses to IOS during the exam design phase were Caucasian. Members of different racial groups, Helms told the CSB, sometimes do their jobs in different ways, “often because the experiences that are open to white male firefighters are not open to members of these other under-represented groups.” CA2 App. A1063–A1064. The heavy reliance on job analyses from white firefighters, she suggested, may thus have introduced an element of bias. Id., at A1063.

The CSB’s fifth and final meeting began with statements from City officials recommending against certification. Ude, New Haven’s counsel, repeated the applicable disparate-impact standard:
“[A] finding of adverse impact is the beginning, not
the end, of a review of testing procedures. Where a
procedure demonstrates adverse impact, you look to
how closely it is related to the job that you’re looking
to fill and you also look at whether there are other
ways to test for those qualities, those traits, those po
sitions that are equally valid with less adverse im
pact.” Id., at A1100–A1101.


New Haven, Ude and other officials asserted, would be vulnerable to Title VII liability under this standard. Even if the exams were “facially neutral,” significant doubts had been raised about whether they properly assessed the key attributes of a successful fire officer. Id., at A1103. See also id., at A1125 (“Upon close reading of the exams, the questions themselves would appear to test a candidate’s ability to memorize textbooks but not necessarily to identify solutions to real problems on the fire ground.”). Moreover, City officials reminded the CSB, Hornick and others had identified better, less discriminatory selection methods–such as assessment centers or exams with a more heavily weighted oral component. Id., at A1108–A1109, A1129–A1130.

After giving members of the public a final chance to weigh in, the CSB voted on certification, dividing 2 to 2.By rule, the result was non-certification. Voting no, Commissioner Webber stated, “I originally was going to vote to certify. . . . But I’ve heard enough testimony here to give me great doubts about the test itself and . . . some of the procedures. And I believe we can do better.” Id., at A1157. Commissioner Tirado likewise concluded that the “flawed” testing process counseled against certification. Id., at A1158. Chairman Segaloff and Commissioner Caplan voted to certify. According to Segaloff, the testimony had not “compelled [him] to say this exam was not job-related,” and he was unconvinced that alternative selection processes would be “less discriminatory.” Id., at A1159–A1160. Both Segalhoff and Caplan, however, urged the City to undertake civil service reform. Id., at A1150–A1154.

{In sum, to say the City considered only the racial impact of the tests and not whether the test measured qualifications is a LIE!!!]
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

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DMistan
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:35 pm

New Haven, Conn. (City), uses objective examinations to identify those firefighters best qualified for promotion. When the results of such an exam to fill vacant lieutenant and captain positions showed that white candidates had outperformed minority candidates, a rancorous public debate ensued. Confronted with arguments both for and against certifying the test results—and threats of a lawsuit eitherway—the City threw out the results based on the statistical racial disparity.
http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/ ... 7-1428.pdf

[in summation: pWnage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]
The Cat-Tribe wrote:It[the racial impact of the test] WAS the main issue.


Edit:
TCT,
Who said anything about what the City or New Haven Civil Service Board considered after the results were in? Who are you accusing of lying? Look, I'm glad to see you reformulate your position to something based on fact, but you need to take the word LIE out.
Last edited by DMistan on Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:42 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:39 pm

DMistan wrote:New Haven, Conn. (City), uses objective examinations to identify those firefighters best qualified for promotion. When the results of such an exam to fill vacant lieutenant and captain positions showed that white candidates had outperformed minority candidates, a rancorous public debate ensued. Confronted with arguments both for and against certifying the test results—and threats of a lawsuit eitherway—the City threw out the results based on the statistical racial disparity.
http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/ ... 7-1428.pdf

[in summation: pWnage!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]
The Cat-Tribe wrote:It[the racial impact of the test] WAS the main issue.


Um, reading SCOTUS cases 101: Don't quote the headnote.

NOTE: Where it is feasible, a syllabus (headnote) will be released, as isbeing done in connection with this case, at the time the opinion is issued.The syllabus constitutes no part of the opinion of the Court but has beenprepared by the Reporter of Decisions for the convenience of the reader. See United States v. Detroit Timber & Lumber Co., 200 U. S. 321, 337.
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

User avatar
DMistan
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:42 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:*snip*


Repeat post:
TCT,
Who said anything about what the City or New Haven Civil Service Board considered after the results were in? Who are you accusing of lying? Look, I'm glad to see you reformulate your position to something based on fact, but you need to take the word LIE out.

EDIT: Who said anything about what the City or New Haven Civil Service Board considered after the results were in, in the rancorous public debates?
They did, in fact, discard the results because they considered "disparate impact." And that's the DEFENSE with which they went to court.
Last edited by DMistan on Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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DMistan
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:46 pm

JUSTICE KENNEDY delivered the opinion of the Court.
In the fire department of New Haven, Connecticut—asin emergency-service agencies throughout the Nation—firefighters prize their promotion to and within the officer ranks. An agency’s officers command respect within the department and in the whole community; and, of course, added responsibilities command increased salary and benefits. Aware of the intense competition for promotions, New Haven, like many cities, relies on objective examinations to identify the best qualified candidates.
In 2003, 118 New Haven firefighters took examinations to qualify for promotion to the rank of lieutenant or captain. Promotion examinations in New Haven (or City) were infrequent, so the stakes were high. The results would determine which firefighters would be considered for promotions during the next two years, and the order in which they would be considered. Many firefighters studied for months, at considerable personal and financial cost.
When the examination results showed that white candidates had outperformed minority candidates, the mayor and other local politicians opened a public debate that turned rancorous. Some firefighters argued the tests should be discarded because the results showed the tests to be discriminatory. They threatened a discrimination lawsuit if the City made promotions based on the tests.Other firefighters said the exams were neutral and fair.And they, in turn, threatened a discrimination lawsuit if the City, relying on the statistical racial disparity, ignored the test results and denied promotions to the candidates who had performed well. In the end the City took the side of those who protested the test results. It threw out the examinations.
Last edited by DMistan on Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:49 pm

DMistan wrote:Edit:
TCT,
Who said anything about what the City or New Haven Civil Service Board considered after the results were in? Who are you accusing of lying? Look, I'm glad to see you reformulate your position to something based on fact, but you need to take the word LIE out.


:palm: :palm:

You've gotten so caught up in trying to score some kind of "pwnage" that you've lost track of what we were arguing about. That fault is yours, not mine.

My position has been consistent throughout and I've repeated it numerous times. What exactly is your position?
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

User avatar
DMistan
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Founded: May 26, 2009
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:53 pm

At every stage of the job analyses, IOS, by deliberate choice, oversampled minority firefighters to ensure that the results—which IOS would use to develop the examinations—would not unintentionally favor white candidates.

...

B
The City’s contract with IOS contemplated that, after the examinations, IOS would prepare a technical report that described the examination processes and methodologies and analyzed the results. But in January 2004, rather than requesting the technical report, City officials, including the City’s counsel, Thomas Ude, convened a meeting with IOS Vice President Chad Legel. (Legel was the leader of the IOS team that developed and administered the tests.) Based on the test results, the City officials expressed concern that the tests had discriminated against minority candidates.

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DMistan
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:57 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:My position has been consistent throughout and I've repeated it numerous times.

Then why do you keep changing it?


The Cat-Tribe wrote:What exactly is your position?


That the defendants argued that if they had certified the test results they would have been liable under Title VII. That was their defense. They did NOT go to court and say their hired hands had fucked up the tests.

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DMistan
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 6:59 pm

TCT's first position, when I entered the thread:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:Um. That last bit was quite necessary because of the utter lie that was in the statement to which I responded. The allegation WAS that the test didn't acurrately[sic] measure skills and knowledge required to assume leadership positions in fighting fires.


That's not, in the least, what this case is about. You've already admitted as much.

What then is your contention?

EDIT:Why don't you work on that for a while. It's Friday, I have things to do.
Last edited by DMistan on Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:01 pm

DMistan wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:My position has been consistent throughout and I've repeated it numerous times.

Then why do you keep changing it?


The Cat-Tribe wrote:What exactly is your position?


That the defendants argued that if they had certified the test results they would have been liable under Title VII. That was their defense. They did NOT go to court and say their hired hands had fucked up the tests.


For fuck's sake, you have really lost track of the plot. I never denied that the racial impact of the tests was relevant or that the defendants were concerned about Title VII liability. There is just more to it than that.

To repeat an earlier post: Read what I posted (emphasis added). Where did I lie or err?

The Cat-Tribe wrote:OK.

First, let me admit I haven't read this entire thread, just skimmed parts of it. I may get back to specific posts later.

Second, I now that almost none of you have or will read the actual SCOTUS decision, especially as it and the dissent combine to over 90 pages. Nonetheless, here a link to the pdf: http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/ ... 7-1428.pdf

Third, I have read the opinion and most of the back-and-forth on this thread is based on ignorance, ideology, and irrelevancies. The case was actually very complicated and the difference between the majority opinion and dissent was rather narrow. Both agreed that the whole problem could have been avoided if the City had used a better selection process. Both agreed this was different than either an affirmative action or a racial set-aside case. Both agreed that the actions taken by the City in not certifying the test results was subjectively in good faith, but nonetheless had a racial impact. Both agreed that the actions taken by the City could nonetheless have been justified by sufficient concern by the City that the tests were biased and they could have been liable for discrimination if they had just certified the tests. The majority held that the City needed to have "strong evidence" it would have been liable and, although the City had prima facie evidence that the test was biased, lacked such strong evidence. The dissent would have held that the City's actions were justified by "good cause" to believe it would be subject to disparate impact liability.

The facts of the case are complicated. There was a great deal of expert opinion that the test was not just facially biased, but fundamentally flawed.

I find the majority and the dissent both to be quite reasonable (with the exception of Justice Scalia and Alito's concurrences) and think the case may well have been correctly decided.


The Cat-Tribe wrote:
Grays Harbor wrote:
Free Soviets wrote:and therefore you want to make sure that any tests given to determine qualification actually measures qualifications. which means when a test comes up with a suspicious outcome that you know will open you up to lawsuits, it just makes sense to not use those results, right?


How so? The allegation was that the test may have had a racial bias, not that it didn't measure the skills and knowledge required to assume leadership positions in fighting fires.


Actually, there was a great deal of evidence provided to the City before its decision that questioned whether they tests actually measured relevant skills and knowledge.

Your ideological reaction ignores inconvenient facts.


The Cat-Tribe wrote:
Grays Harbor wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:Um. That last bit was quite necessary because of the utter lie that was in the statement to which I responded. The allegation WAS that the test didn't acurrately measure skills and knowledge required to assume leadership positions in fighting fires.


1.) you have no clue as to what my ideology may be. its a web forum.

2.) and my only "ideological reaction" is that those most qualified get the positions, regardless of racial makeup. I could give a crap about what their ethnic background is, when it comes to fighting fires we need those most capable to lead to be in those positions.


1) I've read more than a few of your posts. Unless you are consistently roleplaying, some of your opinions and paradigms become evident.

2) You are AVOIDING THE MAIN POINT I MADE. Your assumption that the City or minority firefighters were concerned about race and not qualifications is FALSE. The dispute was whether the tests actually measured objective qualifications or whether they were racially biased. Even the conservative SCOTUS majority recognized that it was not unreasonable to think the tests were biased.
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

User avatar
DMistan
Chargé d'Affaires
 
Posts: 416
Founded: May 26, 2009
Ex-Nation

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby DMistan » Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:06 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:For fuck's sake, you have really lost track of the plot.

:rofl:
You're funny. Have a good Friday Night.

The Cat-Tribe wrote:I never denied that the racial impact of the tests was relevant or that the defendants were concerned about Title VII liability.

Then, state plainly, what did the defense argue?
http://www.ctemploymentlawblog.com/uplo ... ciusdc.pdf
Defendants argue that “the decision not to certify [the
test] results was mandated by anti-discrimination federal, state
and local laws.” Def. Mem. in Support of Mot. for Summary
Judgment [Doc. # 52] at 4. Alternatively, they argue that they
had a good faith belief that Title VII mandated non-certification
of the examinations, and they cannot be liable under Title VII
for attempting to comply with that very statute. Defendants
additionally argue that plaintiffs lack standing to bring their
Equal Protection claim, or, if they do have standing, the claim
lacks merit because all firefighters were treated the same,
regardless of race, as no one was promoted as a result of the
contested exams.


The Cat-Tribe wrote: There is just more to it than that.

ROLL THE EYES
:roll:

The Cat-Tribe wrote:To repeat an earlier post: Read what I posted (emphasis added). Where did I lie or err?

We did this once before.

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Mystic Skeptic
Attaché
 
Posts: 70
Founded: Oct 26, 2007
Ex-Nation

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby Mystic Skeptic » Fri Jul 03, 2009 7:48 pm

World Vision wrote:To be black is to start off at a disadvantage, therefore all tests are invalid that do not take that into account.


What a very offensive thing to say about blacks.

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Tahar Joblis
Powerbroker
 
Posts: 9231
Founded: Antiquity
Civil Rights Lovefest

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby Tahar Joblis » Fri Jul 03, 2009 8:50 pm

I will take a moment to note two things.

One, this is a 5-4 decision. Always be suspicious of 5-4 decisions, as they have been decided by the narrowest of margins.

Two, Justice Souter, whom Sotomayor is replacing, was in the dissent here. In other words, the justice she is replacing agrees with her decision.

EDIT: Oh, and third, there's no such things as "reverse bias."
Last edited by Tahar Joblis on Fri Jul 03, 2009 8:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Greed and Death
Post Czar
 
Posts: 49254
Founded: Mar 20, 2008
Compulsory Consumerist State

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby Greed and Death » Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:16 pm

Tahar Joblis wrote:
EDIT: Oh, and third, there's no such things as "reverse bias."

Yeah there is.
The term originates from electrical currents where their is forward bias and reverse bias.
Forward Bias when used to apply to people refers to a system that makes it easier for one group to succeed, comes from a situation in an electrical circuit where the set up increases the conductivity.
Reverse Bias comes from a situation in people were one group is made to have a more difficult time, this comes from a condition in a circuit where the set up increases resistance.

When used by itself bias can refer to either or both. Most of the uses of just the term bias are closer to the definition of reverse bias then to forward bias.
"Trying to solve the healthcare problem by mandating people buy insurance is like trying to solve the homeless problem by mandating people buy a house."(paraphrase from debate with Hilary Clinton)
Barack Obama

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Tahar Joblis
Powerbroker
 
Posts: 9231
Founded: Antiquity
Civil Rights Lovefest

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby Tahar Joblis » Tue Jul 07, 2009 2:47 pm

greed and death wrote:
Tahar Joblis wrote:
EDIT: Oh, and third, there's no such things as "reverse bias."

Yeah there is.
The term originates from electrical currents where their is forward bias and reverse bias.
Forward Bias when used to apply to people refers to a system that makes it easier for one group to succeed, comes from a situation in an electrical circuit where the set up increases the conductivity.
Reverse Bias comes from a situation in people were one group is made to have a more difficult time, this comes from a condition in a circuit where the set up increases resistance.

When used by itself bias can refer to either or both. Most of the uses of just the term bias are closer to the definition of reverse bias then to forward bias.

A poor metaphor that completely fails the smell test.

Why it is called "reverse bias" in the OP is, AFAIK, part of the traditional method of (for whatever reason) distinguishing between discrimination against white people and discrimination against nonwhite people.

In this particular situation, the legal test used by the fire department was that of forward bias in any case, as you define it; the "merit test" used was invalidated because doing so would have rendered it easier for black firefighters to be promoted; in any event, in a competitive scenario, the two are inextricably coupled. Anything that makes it easier for one group to succeed will mean another group has greater difficulty succeeding, and vice versa.

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Greed and Death
Post Czar
 
Posts: 49254
Founded: Mar 20, 2008
Compulsory Consumerist State

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby Greed and Death » Tue Jul 07, 2009 4:05 pm

Tahar Joblis wrote:
greed and death wrote:
Tahar Joblis wrote:
EDIT: Oh, and third, there's no such things as "reverse bias."

Yeah there is.
The term originates from electrical currents where their is forward bias and reverse bias.
Forward Bias when used to apply to people refers to a system that makes it easier for one group to succeed, comes from a situation in an electrical circuit where the set up increases the conductivity.
Reverse Bias comes from a situation in people were one group is made to have a more difficult time, this comes from a condition in a circuit where the set up increases resistance.

When used by itself bias can refer to either or both. Most of the uses of just the term bias are closer to the definition of reverse bias then to forward bias.

A poor metaphor that completely fails the smell test.

Why it is called "reverse bias" in the OP is, AFAIK, part of the traditional method of (for whatever reason) distinguishing between discrimination against white people and discrimination against nonwhite people.


Because people are idiots and don't think about whats coming out of their mouth. In 50 years the majority of the population will think the electrical terms originated from Civil rights law suits, if they know the electrical terms at all.
"Trying to solve the healthcare problem by mandating people buy insurance is like trying to solve the homeless problem by mandating people buy a house."(paraphrase from debate with Hilary Clinton)
Barack Obama

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The Scandinvans
Senator
 
Posts: 4893
Founded: Oct 09, 2004
Capitalizt

Re: SCOTUS rules for white firefighters in reverse bias case

Postby The Scandinvans » Tue Jul 07, 2009 4:08 pm

Tiesabre wrote:I think it should be taken into account to is how racism plays nowadays.

As a black person I can tell you it isn't in your face. White people know to call a black person a 'fucking nigger' tends to be a death warrant or at least condemnation by your peers. Same goes for Latinos, Native Americans and other non-white races.

So the racism is hidden, harder to spot and less obvious to even those being treated unfairly. A bank denies a black businessman a loan, but if you look at their records they only accent 1 in 20 black applicants whereas they accept 10 in 20 white applicants. When spotted the bank will claim it never noticed and doesn't believe in such practices, whereas they were well aware.

Haven't you ever wondered why when a black person or other minority gets power, they surround themselves with their race. Because if they don't, the white man sure isn't.
And what might be the previous cerdit or employment history of the individuals?

To assume racism without looking at the histories of all the individuals would be stupid would it not?
We are the Glorious Empire of the Scandinvans. Surrender or be destroyed. Your civilization has ended, your time is over. Your people will be assimilated into our Empire. Your technological distinctiveness shall be added to our own. Your culture shall be supplanted by our own. And your lands will be made into our lands.

"For five thousand years has our Empire endured. In war and peace we have thrived. Against overwhelming odds we evolved. No matter what we face we have always survived and grown. We shall always be triumphant." -Emperor Godfrey II

Hope for a brighter tomorrow - fight the fight, find the cure

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