I make a clear distinction between ‘equality’ and ‘equalising’ – the idea of equality, at least how I see it, derives from meritocracy. Judging people purely on nothing other than their ability relative to the situation. Equalising on the other hand is attempting to make everyone equal instead of treating people equal. Quotas, for example, create inequality by forcing employers to pick from a specific section of the applicants and thus not judging everyone on the same terms.
Libertarian philosopher John Locke put forward the idea of everyone being equal at birth because they come into the world knowing nothing (clean slate). This is ofcourse not the case, genes for example bring nature into the equation alongside nurture, but given free access to education at least any monetary inequalities are negated. Physical differences are harder to overcome although again, free healthcare is the obvious way to try and bring those worse off onto the playing field. Meritocratically if someone has no legs and is great at programming – he would get a programming job without any issue.
In attempts to help those in need generalisations are made and applied across a broad spectrum , this social application of the law of large numbers creates a sort of legislative segregation of people. As in it creates the mindset of sex/gender/race/religion when they shouldn’t factor in anyway. Ofcourse treating every case individually would be a bureaucratic nightmare – but with free knowledge and health, and in the future transhumanism, the situations wouldn’t have to be assessed, they would assess themselves.
Meritocracy: Equality by Proxy