Obsession with Identity Politics Is Strangling the United States
A full generation (at least) has been thoroughly indoctrinated into the bizarre, racist, and malignant ideology of identity politics, creating a dangerous condition that harms our society in just about every way and makes young Americans vulnerable to totalitarian charlatans. I summarized my view strongly in that sentence because we all must decide to turn away from spiteful falsehood.
Progressives have promulgated the belief that we’re largely trapped by those (mostly superficial) conditions that are only truly relevant when casting for modeling shoots or reality TV shows — what we look like. They’ve also built barriers to the beliefs and behaviors that can make us more independent as individuals and families by slandering them as hallmarks of an oppressive culture that would require them to give up the core of who they are. The only hope, they insist, is if government by (mostly rich, mostly white) progressives can become so powerful as to stand against the shadowy forces of freedom and moral rectitude.
One can discern the scheme by observing that progressives malign the traditional norms that have made Western Civilization so successful as white-centric tools of subjugation while praising the very-white countries of Northern Europe for the extent to which they’ve given government a role dictating the terms of people’s lives. As Iranian-born Swede Nima Sanandaji points out, though, not only was much of the advance of those nations accomplished before their experiments with socialism (which experiments they are presently moderating), but the typical narrative pushes aside the most relevant factor:
A common misconception is that the Nordic countries became socially and economically successful by introducing universal welfare states funded by high taxes. In fact, their economic and social success had already materialized during a period when these countries combined a small public sector with free-market policies. The welfare state was introduced afterward. That the Nordic countries are so successful is due to an exceptional culture that emphasizes social cohesion, hard work, and individual responsibility.
This explains why people of Nordic heritage actually do much better than their peers in their home countries when they move to the freer United States.
This thesis applies also among “people of color.” Helen Raleigh notes that Americans of Asian heritage do significantly better, economically, than the whites who have supposedly rigged the system by skin color. She even offers a brief recap of history illustrating that Asians do not lack for racial grievances. Instead:
What contributed to Asian American’s impressive economic success? The same research credited three factors:
- Emphasis on education: “Educational attainment among Asian Americans is markedly higher than that of the U.S. population overall. Among those ages 25 and older, 49% hold at least a college degree, compared with 28% of the U.S. population overall.”
- Emphasis on marriage and family: “(Asian) newborns are less likely than all U.S. newborns to have an unmarried mother (16% vs. 41%); and their children are more likely than all U.S. children to be raised in a household with two married parents (80% vs. 63%).”
- Emphasis on work ethic: “Nearly seven-in-ten (69%) Asians say people can get ahead if they are willing to work hard.”
In short, we know what works, and it isn’t matter of race, and it doesn’t involve using government to redistribute wealth. Rather, the key to a successful life, family, and society is economic freedom in an environment of strong moral values of the sort that we associate with Western tradition. However, inasmuch as these are human truths, the accurate characterization would be that societies discover, rather than invent, them.
That is, they don’t belong to the white man or Western Civilization, and it takes a form of mental sickness to force a society to turn away from a fundamental truth that we all share in order to emphasize that which makes us different and either celebrate or malign it, depending on what we look like (or our political incentives). Making matters even more bizarre, the claim that these keys to success are uniquely white or Western is itself racist.