Thursday, September 16, 2010

Poor Judgment

Judge Nicholas Garaufis didn't do enough damage when he threw out the latest fire fighter test? Apparently not, since he has now embarked on a scheme to remedy the fact that-because of his actions-the city is short of firefighting manpower. And the plan adds a quota insult to injury, as the NY Post opines "It's official: Judge Nicholas Garaufis is America's new racial-quota king. The Brooklyn federal jurist, who apparently won't rest until the New York Fire Department meets his personally approved racial specifications, has offered the agency five possible options to hire a new class of firefighters. Yet all five, by Garaufis' own admission, "resemble racial quotas." Resemble? We'd say so. Garaufis says he'll allow the FDNY to create a pool of 2,500 applicants that mirrors the racial makeup of those who took the most recently outlawed test -- and then choose randomly."

All of this dangerous social engineering devolves from the politically correct mindset that demands equality of results-and if somehow the results lack enough diversity after a test is given then, ipso facto, the exam must have been biased. Enter Judge Garaufis: "Garaufis has already thrown out three entrance exams for firefighters. He suggests that he's bound by a federal law which states that any statistical discrepancy in the pass/fail rates between whites and minorities is automatic proof of discrimination. It's called "disparate impact" -- and it's nonsense on stilts."

Indeed it is-and the NY Daily News agrees, labeling the judge's action for what it is: "Brooklyn Federal Judge Nicholas Garaufis is about to burn the city, the Fire Department and thousands of qualified applicants who took the most recent FDNY exam in good faith. Garaufis is moving toward imposing racial hiring quotas as a way to rectify perceived discrimination in the department's testing regimen. To do so would be needlessly and horribly divisive, as well as logic-defying. On the one hand, Garaufis ruled the test invalid because some questions were badly drawn and minorities in general did not score as well as whites. Yet, he accepted the exam as a basis for hiring - while grafting the equivalent of quotas onto the results."

Garaufis should simply butt out-and leave the best firefighting contingent in the world alone so it can continue to do what it does best-save the lives of New Yorkers. It's bad enough when the mayor wants to use the department as a budget cutting pinata; but worse when a jurist, who wouldn't know how to put out a fire if his pants were inflamed, seeks to impose quota-based solutions where they will cause hardship and division within the ranks.

In fact, it is the judge's decision and not the test that will cause a, "disparate impact," on the morale of the city's firefighters and compromise their ability to do what they do better than anyone else-fight fire and protect the citizens of NYC. We'll give the Post the last word: "If the judge is so desperate to remake the FDNY in his own desired image, why doesn't he simply call Bloomberg and ask for the job of fire commissioner? Maybe because he'd be accountable?"