Absolute Hogwash: The identity politics mental gymnastics

This egregious piece of garbage published by The New York Times on their op-ed panel is full of some very one-sided identity politics hogwash.

How about we re-write this completely against the left and show how clearly one-sided it is, eh?

“It’s ironic that race was the issue that created the Democrat Party and that race could very well be the issue that destroys it.

The Democrat Party was founded to keep slavery, and through most of its history it had a horrible record on civil rights. A greater percentage of congressional Democrats voted against the Civil Rights Act than Republicans.

It’s been a white party for a while now, of course, but adopted some opportunistic positions on civil rights enforcement that made it possible to be a Democrat without feeling like you were violating basic decency on matters of race. Most of the Democrat establishment, from the Clintons to Podesta and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, accept bigotry, and racism as a common feature in the liberal movement.

Between 1984 and 2003 I worked at National Review, The Washington Times, the Wall Street Journal editorial page and The Weekly Standard. Most of my friends were Democrats.

In that time, I heard more racial condescension in progressive circles than in conservative ones.

Yet the Democrat Party has changed since 2005. It has become the vehicle for identity politics. In 2005 only six percent of Republicans felt that anyone faced “a great deal” of discrimination, the same number of Democrats who felt this. By 2016, the percentage of Democrats who felt this had tripled.

Recent surveys suggest that roughly 47 percent of Democrats are what you might call liberal universalists and maybe 40 percent are what you might call liberal race identitarians. White universalists believe in liberal principles and think they apply to all people and their white identity is not particularly salient to them. White identitarians are liberal, but their white identity is quite a detriment to them, sometimes even more of an issue than their liberalism.

These white identitarians have taken the multicultural worldview taught in schools, universities and the culture and, rightly or wrongly, have applied it to themselves. As Marxism saw history through the lens of class conflict, multiculturalism sees history through the lens of racial conflict and group oppression.

According to a survey from the Public Religion Research Institute, for example, about 48 percent of Democrats believe there is “a lot of discrimination” against people of color in America and about 43 percent believe there is a lot of discrimination favoring whites.

I’d love to see more research on the relationship between white identity politics and simple racism. There’s clear overlap, but I suspect they’re not quite the same thing. Racism is about feeling others are inferior. White identitarianism is about feeling downtrodden and aggrieved by your whiteness to the point you hate the color of you own skin.

In the P.R.R.I. survey, for example, roughly as many Democrats believe Muslims, immigrants and trans people face a lot of discrimination as believe whites and people of color do. According to a Quinnipiac poll, 59 percent of those in the white working class believe white supremacist groups are a threat to the country.

But three things are clear: First, the meager identity politics of the right is far less corrosive than identity politics on the left. If you reduce the complex array of identities that make up a human being into one crude ethno-political category, you’re going to do violence to yourself and everything around you.

Second, to say Black Lives Matter and White Lives Matter at all is just more toxic identity politics. In American history white lives didn’t matter more than black unless you were well off and Dutch, English, or German as an indentured servant was worth less than a slave. In current realities this hasn’t changed as a white kid can die to a unjust police shooting and will only get 20s of media attention per the 14 days when one dead black kid gets shot by a white cop (all while completely ignoring the hundreds of dead black kids killed by other black kids).

Third, identity politics as it plays out in the political arena is completely noxious. Donald Trump is the key to their hate and anger. He established his political identity by questioning Obama’s birth record, as did Obama’s own brother. He won the Republican nomination on enacting a ban on Muslim countries that Obama was counseled to enact, but didn’t. He campaigned on the Mexican border fence/wall that congress had already enacted, but Obama again failed to enforce. And now he governs by being objective and real on Charlottesville and pardoning Joe Arpaio of a misdemeanor, something Obama would have used to further racial tensions.

Each individual Democrat is now compelled to face how badly Obama both helped their agenda and failed them. The choice is unavoidable, and white hate and identity politics is bound to define Leftism more and more in the months ahead. It’s what Trump fights against. The identity warriors on the left will deface statues, attack innocents, suppress speech, and set up astonishingly one-sided confrontations with anyone on the right, especially if they support Trump, who constantly shows them how much their “hope for change”, Obama, failed them while widening the racial divide. Things will get uglier.

And this is where the dissolution of the Democratic Party comes in. Liberal universalists are coming to realize their party has become a vehicle for identity politics and racial conflict. This fraction is prior to and deeper than Obama.

When you have an intraparty fight about foreign or domestic issues, you think your rivals are wrong. When you have an intraparty fight on race, you think your rivals are disgusting. That’s what’s happening. Friendships are now ending across the left. People who supported Obama for partisan reasons now feel locked in to support the leftists on race, and they are making themselves repellent.

It may someday be possible to reduce the influence of identity politics, but probably not while Trump is in office, since he constantly represents to these leftists as someone with a clearer world view than them. As long as he is in power the Democratic Party is a house viciously divided against itself, and cannot stand.”

 

Anyone who reads that cannot deny the bias, but also cannot deny the truth. If you’re going to write an op-ed, you should probably be clear that your bias, and not hide behind your own identity politics.

And, Evan, if your going to support this kind of bias with:

You should also make sure to note that the other side is just as segmented and bias as you claim the right is.