by Chris Black
The idea of identity politics originates in the cultural Marxism of the 20th century and to put it very simply, it makes for a sample of collectivism (as a political ideology) in its purest form. There are 2 basic philosophical doctrines in this world: collectivism and individualism (left and right of the political spectrum) and they are antithetic. Collectivism is a political philosophy and a moral stance, i.e. it’s an ideology that emphasizes the group and the interests of the group rather than of the individual.
Since groups are abstract concepts as they are composed strictly from individuals (you can’t touch a group, only a certain person from that group), collectivism is the opposite of individualism. On the other hand, individualism is the notion that the individual has inalienable rights which are fundamental and granted upon birth by the Creator ( as per the US Constitution) not by the state, i.e. they can’t be trampled on following that old adagio “for the greater good of the greater number”, which is the favorite slogan of the political left.
Inalienable rights means that the state cannot and shouldn’t grant rights; governments are instituted among men just to protect/secure these natural-God given-unalienable rights (as per the US Declaration of Independence). By contrast, all collectivist systems (Nazism, Socialism, Communism) embrace the contrary view, considering that individual rights are granted by the state. Which brings us to the notion of identity politics and cultural Marxism. In identity politics, the society is divided into distinct and antagonistic political classes, as identity politics is based on the notion that group based movements represent only the interests of that particular group rather than addressing issues which apply to all members of a given community. Hence, identity politics is another form of class warfare, as described in Marx’s Communist Manifesto, and it works by antagonizing different groups in the society: blacks against whites, gays against heterosexuals, women against men etc focusing on the rights of one particular group, claiming that the respective group deserves certain rights based on various theories, usually historical oppression or other forms of oppression(back to that in a moment).
Identity politics marks a steep departure from the classic view (or say ideal) that rights are universal, not particular, i.e. all humans are born with the same rights, which are not determined by one’s gender or race. Which bring us to how the political left in the US strangled itself with identity politics, thus allowing Donald Trump to win the 2016 election. The left in the United States means the Democratic party, which is totally dominated by identity politics. In their view, whites (particularly white males)are defined as oppressors of every other minority in the US. In US universities, there are entire fields dedicated to specializing in one’s chosen identity, as long as that particular identity is non male, non white or non heterosexual: we have women studies, black studies, and so on and so forth. Remember when Hillary Clinton called Trump supporters homophobic, racists, sexists, islamophobic etc. who belonged in the now famous basket of deplorables? Well, she was then speaking into the lingua franca of US academy, which is now incorporated into the Democratic world-view and I am talking about identity politics, yes indeed. While the political left is almost entirely focused on identity politics and warfare sociology, in the era of social media and instant communication (including alternative news sources, like this website), it quickly became obvious that it was the Democrats, not Trump the ones who racialized US politics.
Donald Trump was incessantly depicted as a racist, yet he never used the term “white people” nor he ever referred to “white people” as a voting bloc. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton openly appealed multiple times to non-white racial groups by name. She was mesmerized by the rhetoric of diversity, calling out explicitly to Latino, African Americans, LGBT and women voters at every speech, which was a strategic mistake.
Also, when you’re encouraging racial pride in all groups except for whites, which is the case with the left, you aren’t exactly proving that you’re not a racist. And with over 60% of American adults getting their news from social media, the likes of Twitter and Facebook (don’t forget to share the article), and with Donald Trump claiming that he has over 28 million followers on the respective platforms, which helped him win the primaries and the general elections for zero costs (I am talking about the social media following), this means that identity politics cannot work anymore in a world where political messages arrive directly/undistorted into one’s inbox/Facebook/Twitter feed, regardless of the respective individual’s race, color or creed.
Social media and the Internet are the great equalizer, the free market’s response to the ghettoized mainstream-corporate media, which during the elections (and non-stop since) presented (with rare exceptions) just one point of view. And that’s why the Left is now trying assiduously (together with tech giants like Google, YouTube and Facebook) to censor conservatives/dissenters on their platforms. But, if you ask me, they’re doomed to fail.
by Chris Black