Intersectionality

identity-795260_640If you are going to understand and navigate the complexities of oppression, victimhood, and political status hierarchies, you need to understand the concept of “intersectionality.”

The conventional categories of identity politics are race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, class, age, etc.  In each of these categories, some identities are privileged while others are discriminated against.  But a particular individual exists within multiple categories and thus holds multiple identities.  Each identity has its own place on the spectrum of privilege or discrimination hierarchies.  They “intersect,” and so a person’s “intersectionality”–that is, the particular combination of identities–defines his or her position on the socio-political hierarchy.

A black man who is heterosexual and middle class is oppressed because of his race, but his sexual orientation and social class are privileged.  A white woman who is lesbian and working class is privileged for being white, but her sex, sexual orientation, and social class make her oppressed.  A black, transgendered, lesbian, working class woman is more oppressed.

With intersectionality, you may be privileged, but you have areas in which you are oppressed.  Or if you are oppressed, intersectionality helps you to see that there are people even more oppressed than you are.

Intersectionality theory offers a complex calculus for calibrating how oppressed a person is, and thus who has the highest moral high ground within a group of leftists.  This explains a lot, as I get into after the jump.

 

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And now the conservative Generation Z

9091132233_9f8928fbbd_zForget Millennials.  A new generation is coming of age:  Generation-Z.

It’s being heralded as the most conservative generation since 1945.

One reason, according to Charlie Peters, a member of that generation in Great Britain, is their love of freedom.  Not long ago, that impulse led young people to embrace the causes of the Left.  But now the Left is associated with suppressing freedom.

Now that Generation-Zs are entering the university, they are chafing against the Leftist establishment’s rejection of free speech.  These young people, Peters observes, grew up on the internet and social media where people can hold any position and say whatever they want.  So when they come to the university with its speech codes and taboo ideas, they don’t like it.  So they are becoming conservatives. [Read more…]

What’s been missing at the Democratic convention

What’s been missing at the Democratic National Convention?

(1)  American flags.  The first night, there were Palestinian flags on the convention floor.  Outside, Bernie Sander’s socialist followers flew the red banner with the hammer and sickle of the Soviet flag.  But no Old Glory.  Not until an article in the Daily Caller pointed out the absence of the American flag, in stark contrast with the Republican convention where the stars and stripes were everywhere.  Whereupon the Democrats brought in some.

(2)  References to terrorism.  Fact-checkers confirmed that none of the 61 speakers on the first day of the convention mentioned the words terror, terrorism, terrorist, Islamic, or ISIS.  There was scant mention Tuesday, but Wednesday’s emphasis on foreign policy did include talk about terrorism.

What else has been missing?

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Are Christians responsible for the Orlando shooting?

The left is blaming Christians for the Orlando attack on gays and lesbians, while defending Islam.  Even though the attacker himself said that he acted in the name of Islam.  David French explores this odd pattern of accusation and defense. [Read more…]

Back to protests, riots, and May Day demonstrations

Protesters, mostly Hispanics, rioted at a Donald Trump campaign event in Orange County last weekend.  They tried to block the candidate from getting to the stage, forcing hm to climb a fence.  He quipped, “It felt like I was crossing the border.”  In Sacramento, protesters burned the American flag and flew the Mexican flag.  Latino activists promise more of the same if Trump gets the Republican nomination.

You would think they would realize that such behavior confirms Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and that they are only getting him more votes.

But all of this seems to be part of a leftist revival, a back-to-the-seventies kind of activism.  Thus, yesterday, May 1, the international socialist holiday, was marked in the United States and throughout the world by huge May Day demonstrations. [Read more…]

Leftists go from frightening to frightened

When someone chalked “vote for Trump” messages on the sidewalk, students at Emory University protested, saying seeing these words made them feel “frightened.”  The administration, playing the role of in loco helicopteris parentis, held their hands, offering counseling and promising to investigate who committed this brazen act of democracy.

Similarly, in Scripps College in California, someone wrote “Trump 2016” on a whiteboard, leading to charges of “racism” and the claim that the campaign slogan was an act of “violence.”  This is all of a piece with university students demanding “safe spaces” where they will be protected from any words or ideas that they find disturbing.

Leftists used to project a menacing swagger.  The old Marxists made posters of themselves as brawny workers with hammers and sickles and openly talked about “liquidating the bourgeoisie” (that is, exterminating the middle class).  In my day, the “new left” college radicals stencilled a clenched fist on sidewalks and whiteboards.  They taunted their opponents with “up against the wall, ************!” (referring to the use of a firing squad).

But now these “post-Marxist” leftists–who substitute race, gender, and sexual identity for the old left’s concern for economic justice and class struggle–are so timorous, so fragile, so easily frightened by opposition, that it’s hard to take them seriously. [Read more…]