The government just sent me a letter informing me that it is time, in the name of creating a race-blind society, to categorize all my employees by race, count them up, and report everyone's color to the government.
As an aside, I found this bit of privacy reassurance to employees to be pretty funny. This is suggested language for an employer to use when asking, "um, by the way, can you tell me what race you are?"**
"The employer is subject to certain governmental recordkeeping and reporting requirements for the administration of civil rights laws and regulations. In order to comply with these laws, the employer invites employees to voluntarily self-identify their race or ethnicity. Submission of this information is voluntary and refusal to provide it will not subject you to any adverse treatment. The information obtained will be kept confidential and may only be used in accordance with the provisions of applicable laws, executive orders, and regulations, including those that require the information to be summarized and reported to the federal government for civil rights enforcement. When reported, data will not identify any specific individual."
So the private data you share will only be used if Congress writes a law, the President issues an executive order, or a bureaucrat writes a rule saying they can use it. And this is comforting? Our President claims the right to assassinate Americans by executive order, for God sakes, and this paragraph makes people feel better about categorizing themselves with the government in ways that, in the past, have been used by numerous governments in a variety of pogroms.
** I do not allow my supervisors to even ask. We just do our best from our knowledge of all the employees. My vision of the relationship I have with my employees does not include inquiring about their race (or religion, or sexual orientation) in an official capacity. It also, does not encompass testing their bodily fluids, which is why I refuse to bid on management contracts that require drug testing of our employees.