a reply to: thinline
I think that you have to be careful about how you classify discriminatory policies. Obviously, one cannot run a school with a reasonable degree of
student safety in mind, if one of the janitorial staff happens to be a convicted paedophile. Technically speaking, preventing such people from working
around children, would be discrimination, if we cast as broad a net with the way we think about the word, as your OP seems to.
However, it must also be said, that although it is important to keep people who pose a danger to children, or other human beings for that matter,
away from potential targets of crime, and although it is sensible to prevent a five year old from gaining access to a drivers permit, as another
poster alluded to, there are types of discrimination enacted by governments which appear to be entirely unjustifiable.
And of course, there are also the sorts of discrimination which are expressed by individuals toward others, perhaps for reasons of faith, creed, or
colour of the skin. None of these are valid, all who carry the ability within themselves to hate or mistreat a person just because of what amounts to
differences between themselves and the objects of their dislike, are in fact backward knuckled daggers, no matter how intelligent they think
themselves to be, or indeed how intelligent they might otherwise appear.
So in summary, you have to be fully aware of context when making value judgements about terminology. Discrimination is not always a negative factor
in the life of a citizen, but the context in which the term is being used is CRUCIAL to understanding its validity. Arbitrary standards imposed by
government, which either ignore, or fly in the face of scientific understanding, for example, are often as much use as a chocolate teapot at a garden
party on the surface of the sun. Keeping genuinely dangerous individuals away from potential targets for their insanities on the other hand, is just
common sense. Hating on a person you never met over some perceived and apparently irreconcilable difference, is ignorance in motion, stupidity made
flesh and allowed to walk the world. Context is everything.