Read the passage carefully and answer the following questions:
The most well-understood dimension of racism involves taking actions that people of colour view as overtly prejudiced—policing black citizens much differently than whites, calling the police on a black bird-watcher in Central Park who is asking you to obey the law, calling somebody the N-word to show them who is boss. This is racism in the first degree. If officers anticipated that they would be held fully accountable for bad policing, they would do more good policing and we could begin healing the wounds they’ve inflicted on black people for centuries.
Then there is opposing or turning one’s back on anti-racism efforts, often justified by the demonization of the people courageously tackling racist behaviour. I call this racism in the second degree, akin to aiding and abetting.
The final, most pernicious category undergirds the everyday black experience. When employers, educational institutions, and governmental entities do not unwind practices that disadvantage people of colour in the competition with whites for economic and career mobility, that is fundamentally racist—not to mention cancerous to our economy and inconsistent with the American dream. For example, the majority of white executives operate as if there is a tension between increasing racial diversity and maintaining the excellence-based “meritocracies” that have made their organizations successful. After all, who in their right mind would argue against the concept of meritocracy?
Employers whose efforts to increase diversity lack the same analytical and executional rigour that is taken for granted in every other part of their business engage in practices that disadvantage black people in the competition for economic opportunity. By default, this behaviour protects white people’s positions of power.
We can increase the cost of this behaviour by calling on major employers to sign on to basic practices that demonstrate that black lives matter to them. Companies that sign on will be recognized and celebrated. Senior management teams that decline to take these basic steps will no longer be able to hide, and they will struggle to recruit and retain top talent of all colours who will prefer firms that have signed on. Then more people of colour will become economically mobile, organizations will become more diverse and competitive, and there will be a critical mass of black leaders whose institutional influence leads to more racially equitable behaviour. These leaders will also have the economic power to further elevate the cost of all other types of racist behaviour, in policing, criminal justice, housing, K-12 education, and health care—systems that for decades have been putting knees on the necks of our most vulnerable citizens and communities.
Third-degree racism can be deadly. For at least the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention mandated that in order to get tested, you had to go to a primary care doctor to get a prescription and then, in some areas, also get a referral to a specialist who could approve a test, because they were in limited supply. That process made it much harder for minorities to access tests because they are much less likely to have primary-care physicians. If the people who designed that process knew upfront that they would be exposed as racist, fired, and ostracized if their approach put minorities at a greater health risk than white people, they would have designed it differently and saved black lives. Just having a critical mass of minorities in decision-making roles regarding that test-qualification process would have also saved many lives.
Q. Which of the following cannot be inferred from the passage?
I. Employers who strive to improve racial diversity in their organizations do so because they understand that an excellence-based meritocracy system is flawed.
II. Perpetrators of third-degree racism are unwitting participants in a system designed to disadvantage black people.
III. Racism is categorized into different degrees based on the severity of the impact on the Black community.
IV. Institutional influence of black people is crucial to ensuring equitable outcomes for the Black community.