As reported, ASQ CEO William Troy still hasn’t done what nearly every politician, CEO and celebrity has , and denounced racism and white supremacism, this despite the awkward fact that one of ASQ’s own Section Chairs and Fellows wrote an article that may have inspired the Charlottesville neo-Nazi terrorist attack.

Nearly a decade and half ago, ASQ’s leadership did not lack such moral courage. in 2013, the President-Elect of ASQ from that time, Ken Case, openly called for an end to racism in an article published by ASQ Team and Workplace Excellence Forum. In that article, Case’s theory was described as, “Quality is embedded in every sphere of activity. People work within affined communities to pursue common goals for human betterment.” Case honed this idea further, describing a future goal where “racism is eliminated. Women are at last truly equal to men.”

This stands in stark contrast to the ASQ of 2017, where one ASQ Fellow quotes Hitler and Goebbels when arguing some people of color should be labeled as subhuman, and where another ASQ Fellow “mansplains” that the word “bitch” isn’t sexist. Whereas President Trump is being criticized for creating a “false equivalency” between neo-Nazis and counter protesters, Troy’s stance can only be summed up as “false ambivalence.”  I call it “institutionalized meh.”

Of course, it was easy for Case to call out racism and sexism as generic concepts in the context of quality and society at large; it’s another thing for an ASQ senior executive to discuss these things as infections rampant within the membership of ASQ itself, especially at the Fellow and Section Chair level. One wonders if Case would have been as reticent as Troy appears to be, though.

But regardless, it’s clear that Case’s view would unlikely ever be published now, in Troy’s ASQ, where he argues the organization has to be open to “ALL” (his caps, not mine) regardless of the “personal views of members,” even if those views involve running over people with cars or saying some Jews are “oven-ready.”


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    About Christopher Paris

    Christopher Paris is the founder and VP Operations of Oxebridge. He has over 30 years' experience implementing ISO 9001 and AS9100 systems, and is a vocal advocate for the development and use of standards from the point of view of actual users. He is the author of Surviving ISO 9001:2015. He reviews wines for the irreverent wine blog, Winepisser.