Social Justice Burger, 86 the Logic:

All Marxist Patty, Reverse Racism Sauce, Served on a White Privilege Bun

First, read the thought bubble in this image.

Foreword:

What am I doing exactly? And what the hell is this picture all about?

This picture popped up on my facebook feed over a month ago. A lot of people have probably heard someone say something similar to the thought expressed in the photo, or maybe you’ve seen some ludicrous headline or video that made you gag a bit, or heard reference to the structuralist definition of “racism” (racism = power + prejudice) that is taunted ad nauseam by regressive academics, and so-called “journalists” who work at places like MTV and Buzzfeed. So maybe you’ve seen or heard something to this effect before, and thought “That’s not right” but weren’t sure from which angle to approach in refuting it. So that’s the first item on the agenda of this essay; offer my perspective on why this idea is nonsense. I am writing this (what has turned into a much longer paper than I first imagined) because I want to pay full service to my criticism of these warped ideas that are being propagated about racism and identity in the western world. I hope you enjoy my writing and will share some interest in the topics I bring up; genuine, informed, polite discussion (it need not be all three, mind you, but shoot for 2/3 at least) is always appreciated. Also note, if you genuinely subscribe to the ideology this paper will discuss*, I don’t expect to change your perspective. I would rather offer those who are uninformed, curious, and/or perplexed about “Social Justice Theory” and the agents who are peddling it, an informed criticism that they can compare with their own understanding of these concepts. With that said, let’s get into it.

*NB: I refer to such ideology generally and at different turns as “Social Justice ideology/theory” “SJW thought” “collectivism,” the pejorative “regressive” ideology, as well as “cultural marxism.” I want to state beforehand that I recognize these things do not all precisely or perfectly denote the same ideology/ theory/ discourse. Blah, blah, blah.

PART 1: Context

“A Paltry Appetizer”

So this little thought bubble about “reverse racism” and “reverse sexism” (and their non-existence) comes from an introductory textbook for “Social Justice Education” entitled Is Everyone Really Equal? An Introduction to Key Concepts in Social Justice Education by Ozlem Sensoy and Robin Diangelo. It is part of the “Multicultural Education Series” published by Teachers College Press of Columbia University. Click the link to check out the book for sale on Amazon.

I urge you to check the comments, as well as the table of contents if you’re up for it, …if not, who cares. Anyways, this lovely thought bubble probably comes from a sidebar in chapter 4, “Oppression and Power.” I don’t have the book so I can’t be sure.

It is not really surprising that this book was published by Columbia University, which is the American university that welcomed scholars from the Frankfurt school in 1933 to establish a new institute in New York when they were forced to flee Germany under the Nazis. The Frankfurt School is responsible for what is today known as “Critical Theory” and a wide range of academic thought/ social movements that are often referred to in sum as “Cultural Marxism.” I’ll get to this later, (much later)…

But, why is this important? I want to clue readers into the source of this material before we really dive into the criticism of the text itself, because we should consider the audience that is being spoken to/ targeted by the text. As I mentioned above, perhaps you frequently see some regressive article or half-baked meme posted in your newsfeed. Then you think to yourself “that’s ridiculous” and scroll on, with nary a thought given, much less a response, because you don’t want to “offend” anyone, and you probably have better things to do than argue on fb all day, amiright. Ok, hold that thought.
 
 This photo is of some flippant little thought bubble from one chapter, in an entire textbook that is aimed at “educating” college freshmen, who generally are not very high in the critical thinking skills category (I think we can all agree). Consider that. An entire semester, with classes of 15, 30, 60, maybe as many as 100 kids reading this and writing reports that agree with their teachers’ assertions that “only white people can be racist” and “only men can be sexist.” Philidelphia, we have a problem. This little cutesy thought bubble is already just bursting with fallacious assumptions, begging to be unpacked, so I can only imagine…no wait, I can imagine exactly…what is in the rest of the book.

So just take a moment to compare your exposure to this material, as it has been, on fb or TV, where you can just scroll away or change the channel and shrug it off, in contrast to that of some pimple faced 18 year old kid who barely knows how to tie their own shoes after graduating high-school. Imagine a student who (all jokes aside) is probably reading at an 8th or 9th grade level coming into “Social Justice 101” or “Gender Studies 101” and diving headfirst into a textbook like this one. 
 
 Consider one more thing. The ninth chapter of the text book is entitled “Yeah, But….Common Rebuttals.” No, I’m not joking. Now maybe I’ve just been in school too long, but if an introductory textbook to an entire discipline, offers a chapter of “Common Rebuttals” it sounds more like an edition of “Social Justice Apologetics.” To me, this basically tells us; (A) the intention is to prepare these kids for argumentation to defend and espouse an ideology, as opposed to providing objective data and its analysis. And (B) there are probably some pretty big holes in the logic and theory of the text, if the authors already anticipate their own criticism, and feel a need to include a whole chapter addressing these potential questions from the students. Moving on.

PART 2: “Reverse Racism” Wtf?

“Who ordered this?”

First point goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyways. Of course there is no such thing as reverse racism…because it is simply called “RACISM.” In fact, the ONLY people who I have ever heard use the term “reverse racism” are leftists who use it specifically in reference to the structuralist definition of racism. Doesn’t that seem odd to anyone else? Why on earth, do they need to make such an awkward statement about the absence of a particular kind of racism, when no one but themselves have ever even asserted that such a concept as “reverse racism” is imaginable in the first place? (Of course, I’m being rhetorical, and this question does have an answer, which I’ll get to.)
 
 People who are not influenced by these “progressive” ideologies simply don’t use the expression. Period. Which is why when most critical thinking people read the message in this thought bubble, they just scoff, or maybe raise an eyebrow or something. This brings us to the issue of language, and how certain people pushing certain agendas….*ahem* … are so keen to manipulate word use to obfuscate meaning of the core concepts being discussed. In our present discussion, we have two operative definitions of the word “racism” at play.

The first is what I call the “classic” definition of racism; which is “prejudiced or discriminatory attitudes or behavior based on ethnicity/skin color/ race.” But the SJW version is more akin to some obscure mathematical algorithm that posits “racism = power + prejudice” (both components are qualitative mind you, as opposed to quantitative, and thus incapable of being directly measured, which kind of defeats the point of an equation imho, but anyways…..)

So back to that rhetorical question. Why do they bring up this concept of “reverse racism”? The reason is because the intellectuals trying to sell you the idea of the “structuralist” racism theory, know good and well that they are presenting their concept against the backdrop of a cultural-linguistic system that ALREADY has a definition of racism that does not match theirs. They know this. They know this. They know this. Don’t let them pretend and feign ignorance that they don’t. They know it, and that is why, inevitably when someone operating from the “classic” definition presents anecdotal evidence like “Well my neighbor is black and he said he hates white people, he’s definitely a racist” this little “anti-concept” of “reverse racism” comes into play. The response is obfuscated by references to OTHER tenuously defined concepts and will come out something like this “Oh no Bobby, he is just ‘prejudiced’ towards white people, not racist.” And then inevitably, something like “A lot of people think reverse racism is possible but actually it’s not, because racism is based on hierarchies of power referential to in-group/ out-group positionality as it oppresses marginalized groups.”

Ok, ok, I got little carried away there. But that is genuinely something a believer of this ideology might say to applause (or finger-snapping) if done in the presence of the right audience. My point is that the concept of “reverse racism” is really only articulated at all, because it acts as a kind of discursive “stop-gap” if you will, ideological insurance… basically they are naming the cork that plugs the hole in the side of their ship. And it’s done in anticipation of the likelihood that assertions/ criticisms based on the “classic” definition will come into play during argumentation. Our wonderful thought bubble, recognized in context, is illustrative of the way this little preemptive tactic is employed in their discourse.

A quote from rational wiki on the “power + prejudice” definition of racism:

“It is important to note that, whether you agree or disagree with the definition, words can have many meanings at the same time. The use of racism to mean “prejudice plus power” by however many academics does not disqualify other definitions of the term any more than psychiatrists defining the term “Depression” as a specific disorder disqualifies using it to mean being extremely sad. “Prejudice plus power” as used by some academics is what is called a stipulative definition, used primarily for academic research to literally simplify discussions and text, not to “replace” other definitions of the word in common usage. Thus, to evoke it as the “only correct definition” or as the somehow “most socially just” stance on bigotry imaginable is ridiculous. This is an important point to make considering the many people using the definition to derail arguments and for the emotional stigma it has to silence dissent and to excuse whatever bigotry they themselves have.”

haha… meant to “simplify” discussions. Classic.

PART 3. “Reverse Sexism” Wtf?

“No, we definitely didn’t order this.”

Ok, please go back and reread the last section but replace every instance of the word “racism” with “sexism” and alter the contextual identifiers accordingly. 
 
 ……
 
 Done. Great. 
 
 Ok, so now that I’ve covered the context of this little gem, and raised the caution tape around the manipulation of language that is being practiced, let’s go further and really unpack this statement. Let’s look under the rug and see if we can find an ideology hiding under there.

PART 4: You’re a racist! He’s a sexist! She’s a racist! EVERYBODY IS A RACIST!!

“I’d like to talk to a manager.”

Let’s read this little nugget of sunshine one more time:

“STOP!! There is no such thing as reverse racism or reverse sexism (or the reverse of any kind of oppression). While women can be just as prejudiced as men, women can not be ‘just as sexist as men’ because they do not hold political, economic and institutional power.”

To properly decode this we need to recognize two underlying assumptions that are being insinuated, namely:

A) racism and sexism are assumed to be “forms of oppression.” 
B) demographic markers assume collective identities.
 
 It’s clever how they just float these assertions by you in a seemingly innocuous thought bubble about improper terminology.
 
 Not surprisingly, both of those insinuations are tenuous and easily argued against (hence the reason they are insinuated rather than overtly stated.) Of the two, admittedly, the second one is the trickier beast to deal with, and the former insinuation ultimately hinges upon the latter, as does the crux of the entire modern “Social Justice (ie cultural marxist)” ideology.

This section will deal primarily with the first assumption; that “racism” or “sexism” as conceptual nouns (presumed to be “systems” in and of themselves) may denote “forms of oppression.”

The “ism” suffix in English has its roots in both Greek and Latin, and arrived in English via French. Its original morphological use was to denote something in a particular state of “action” or “being.” It can refer to a set of attitudes/beliefs (a)(ex. creationism), an identifier for types of related actions (b)(ex. ventriloquism) or a state of being (c)(ex. Barbarism). With racism, and sexism, there is a lot of gray area between these three aspects. But given proper context, the word could be tied to each aspect, and maybe even cover one or two aspects simultaneously (I’m not arguing against that). However, assuming that “racism” or “sexism” can encompass all three aspects of meaning concurrently and unceasingly, is in my opinion, a very difficult assertion to make, which is precisely the approach to these words which the above quote demonstrates. Let me elaborate;
 
 In many cases, black people in the USA are treated unfairly (no argument there). So the actions of people who mistreat or give unfair treatment to black people are therefore seen as racist, referring specifically to the actions (b). Further, the attitudes or beliefs that some white people have towards black people, which may lead to such actions, are also racist, referring specifically to the discriminatory beliefs (a). 
 
 (Okay, pause. If a white person treats a non-white person unfairly, is it an example of racism 100% of the time??)

So two out of three there, most people can probably get their head around. However, I would assert that it is illogical to assume that in every case of unfair treatment between people of two different races that “attitudes or beliefs of racism” inform the action. For example, something very mundane:

A very popular restaurant with a multi-ethnic customer base is seating patrons. They are almost at full capacity. The hostess is white. A black family enters the restaurant and there is only a single open table, dimly lit, remaining in the back of the restaurant near the restrooms.

If we were the customer, we would likely consider this unfair, right? No one wants the shitty table by the bathroom, it’s natural. However, if the hostess seats the black family here, I ask you, is racism informing this unfair action? If you say “no” then we are in agreement, and I would assert that this is evidence that we can’t logically 100% of the time assume a static correlation between unfair treatment/actions (b) and a discriminatory attitude/ prejudiced beliefs (a).

However, from the perspective of the SJW, not only would the answer to my last question likely be “yes” but they might even go a step further. For adherents of this ideology, not only does the word “racism” or “sexism” always conclude a correlation between the (a) & (b) aspects of the ~ism definition (ie ‘ANY unfair action from a member of a majority towards a member of a minority MUST necessarily represent the fundamental beliefs of the actor perpetrating the unfair action, even if they are potentially unknown or unrecognized.’), but it also goes deeper to include the “state of being” aspect (c) as well. And THIS, is where things really go haywire.

The “Power + Prejudice = Racism/ Sexism” equation ultimately disavows the autonomy of an individual’s beliefs/actions whenever there is perceived to be unequal treatment in a given situation. In a world where every unfair action between people from different demographics represents an underlying and collectively shared prejudice towards those who are “marginalized,” the final conclusion is that “racism” and “sexism” are fundamental to an entire society’s structure. That is, they are not things that are simply made manifest due to the attitudes/ beliefs (a) of an individual or a group by their actions (b)…but rather, in the SJW imagination “racism” and “sexism” are predetermined by demography within a society. To read it in their own words, check this article I stumbled across entitled “White Fragility” coming from such an esteemed source as the “Good Men Project”:

“Mainstream dictionary definitions reduce racism to individual racial prejudice and the intentional actions that result. The people that commit these intentional acts are deemed bad, and those that don’t are good. If we are against racism and unaware of committing racist acts, we can’t be racist; racism and being a good person have become mutually exclusive. But this definition does little to explain how racial hierarchies are consistently reproduced.
Social scientists understand racism as a multidimensional and highly adaptive system — a system that ensures an unequal distribution of resources between racial groups. Because whites built and dominate all significant institutions, (often at the expense of and on the uncompensated labor of other groups), their interests are embedded in the foundation of U.S. society.”

The above description is not completely devoid of logic, the problem however, is the dangerous leap from “mainstream dictionary definitions” to what “social scientists understand.” There is definitely something to be said about ‘institutionalized discrimination’, which is a very real thing. It can be evidenced in various civilizations throughout human history, (ex. the Indian caste system, women in Islamic countries, and of course slavery/ Jim Crow in the US). However, even recognizing these historical cases of “institutionalized discrimination/ racism” (ie evidenced in practice* by social and political institutions), US society today still does not meet the criteria of the new “systemic racism” definition, with “systemic” meaning pervasive/affecting all parts of an entity. (Although, the two terms “institutionalized” and “systemic,”are often used interchangeably in this context, it may be useful to note the distinction.)

Besides the fact that discrimination based on race/sex is forbidden dejure in the USA, even defacto discrimination evidenced towards ethnic minorities (which certainly can be found), does not and can not represent an ‘unalterable attitude/belief of every agent of state or member of society’, nor can it be conflated with the “state of being” (c) aspect of “ism”’s morphological meaning.

How do I justify this claim, you ask?? Reason one is simply this; a “State” or “society” is a corporate entity made up of INDIVIDUALS. Even if a racist ideology or a worldview which discriminates towards a particular group is en vogue, even endorsed by a majority, it still comes down to INDIVIDUALS who endorse that worldview, to ACT in accordance with it/ enforce the “institutionalized discrimination” which emerges as a result of the racist ideology.
 
 Do you see where I’m going with this? If someone says something like “Korea is a racist country” they are being colloquial and making a generalization, because they know that not all Koreans are racist, even if plenty are. In the case of the US, the mere fact that there are “white allies” to the anti-racist cause, and black officials in seats of power, proves the point that the corporate entity of the “State” or the “society” can not in sum, be absolutely 100% racist. If an individual does not subscribe to the racist ideology prevalent in a society, they will not consciously act in accordance with it (that goes for white police officers, all the way to black presidents). Therefore, when someone says a “country” or a “government” is racist/sexist, all anyone is ever really doing is speaking in generalizations to assert their individual belief or opinion that most individuals which comprise said entity, are racist/sexist. However, since “actions” are ALWAYS carried out by individuals, if an entity’s racism or sexism is not being made manifest through “action”(b) then a people’s attitudes or beliefs (a), regardless what they may be, can hardly constitute a permanent state or system of oppression.(c)

Note, this is not to assert that racism is completely absent from the US’s legal system or in certain offices of authority. What I mean is that even in spite of evidence for the presence of racism, there are equally evidential examples of government officials and people with wealth and capital who are not racist, and who do not do not subscribe to racist beliefs or enforce racist policies. Because these people do qualify as agents of the state (and members of society), then blanket statements like “America is racist” or “the government is racist” or “all police are racist” are clearly not accurate. Therefore, on what grounds can one argue that “racism” itself (an abstract concept) can constitute an empirically evidenced “form of oppression”? Remember it is the individual* judge that calls a case, and an individual* police officer that pulls the trigger… not any “adaptive system.”

This is why the above article and the thought bubble are both highly deceptive. Notice above, how after saying the conventional or “classic” definition “doesn’t explain how racial hierarchies are consistently reproduced”…the article jumps to “adaptive systems” and “unequal distribution of resources” between “racial groups.” This is a red flag, (in more ways than one). Racism here, is no longer about what an individual does or believes. It is about the distribution of power and resources according to collective identity / demography.

According to this ideology “Racism” and “Sexism” are then ‘supra-personal’ phenomena. They are embedded within and expressions of, a “collective existence.” The entire society therefore exists in a permanent “state” of racism or sexism (c). Basically, it’s in the air you breathe, and the water that you drink….it’s in your blood (but only, of course, if you are a member of the dominant demographic within a society).

This has been an abbreviated explanation tracing the logic that informs people when they assert that “All white people are racist.” or “All men are naturally sexist.” Or the inverse statements like “Black people can’t be racist” or “Women can’t be sexist” which bring us back to the content of our adorably vapid thought bubble.

In the next section I will discuss the second insinuation from above, which is that “demographic markers assume collective identities.” Before that, I want to make it clear; the reason this SJW-style “collectivization of identity” discourse comes to the conclusions it does, is because they have adopted a worldview in which the smallest social phenomenon becomes an inverse representation of the largest social phenomenon (Ie, “the personal is political”). It is a dualistic and simplistic way of understanding the world, with echoes of the “quest for universalism” and “cultural relativism” approaches to social/ cultural research. In their eyes; because there is injustice…all of society must therefore be unjust. Because racism exists…the fabric of society must essentially be racist. Because I have been the subject of unfair treatment or criticism…society is therefore fundamentally oppressive.
 
 These are the absolutist tendencies that underpin their logic, and they are at the core of an ideological orientation that prizes a collective identity over the individual’s autonomy. On the surface, that may not sound like a bad thing, and in theory (*keyword), it isn’t. However, in practice, recent history has shown that collective ideologies, more specifically the ‘forced implementation of collectivism’ can have disastrous consequences. And this my friends (those of you still reading), is at the heart of the ideological/cultural war that is being waged over the future of Western civilization.

Moving on.

PART 5: Collectivism meets Cultural Pluralism.

“I hope they don’t expect a tip.”

What I want to do in this section is offer a perspective on “cultural pluralism” and “cross cultural currents” that I hope, will thoroughly dispel any lingering doubts about the false logic of the insinuations embedded in the original thought bubble that spawned this whole essay. To do that, let’s take a premise:

Let’s assume that sexism and racism really do constitute “forms of oppression.” Let’s assume that at least some of the USA’s social fabric is in fact labeled “sexist/racist blend: wash with care.” Let’s assume that white people are unconsciously racist simply by virtue of being born white, and by growing up in a society that benefits them purely by virtue of their “whiteness.” Let us also assume that black people and other minorities, by default, are incapable of being racist, or holding racist attitudes. And likewise, women are fundamentally incapable of being sexist, or holding sexist beliefs. Now with this as our premise, I want to introduce the lives of five hypothetical people.

A) Let’s start in left field. An older Korean man. One who immigrated with his family so that his children could attend top universities in the US. He grew up in Korea, and is very nationalistic. He never liked foreigners, especially Japanese and Chinese. He has some respect for Americans, because they helped the ROK establish and defend its independence, but he was never really happy seeing the influx of foreigners in his native land over the years. He definitely isn’t thrilled about living in the US, but he’s willing to make the sacrifice for the prosperity of his children. In Korea, this man’s family had privilege and power, and he was open in his dislike of foreigners. But what happens when his social paradigm shifts? As he crosses that cultural boundary, is the shift from oppressor to oppressed instantaneous or gradual? Did he leave his racism behind in Korea, or did he carry it with him as he settled down in California?

B) Next, a young white woman, born of Dutch ancestry, raised in a very wealthy neighborhood of NYC. She has lived a comfortable life thanks to the hard work of her parents, and attends a good university pursuing a degree in liberal arts (let’s say Columbia just for the hell of it). She understands systems of oppression and readily acknowledges her “white privilege.” Then she finds out she has family living in the countryside of South Africa, and decides to go for a visit. Her positive outlook and passion for social justice do not prepare her for her travel experience. Her cousins in SA don’t go out after dark. Her uncle and her aunt inform her that their property has been robbed multiple times over the past year, and her uncle was even held at gunpoint and beaten on one occasion. They have reported the incidents to the police, but the local government only suggested they sell their property and move. They are the only white family left in town, and the family tells their visitor from America that they are considering leaving, and moving abroad, because they feel increasingly unsafe in SA. If you were this young woman, how would you explain to this family that they are actually beneficiaries of “white privilege”? How would you convince your relatives that the land they’ve been farming for generations is actually stolen and that the robbers are actually entitled to things they stole? Further, if you were the woman, would you encourage them to leave SA and move to the USA? And if they did come, would their power/privilege ratio be greater or lesser than that of their condition in the countryside of SA where they are clearly a persecuted minority?

C) A young Icelandic man. The whitest of the white, raised on the country’s northern shores. He has never interacted with a black person in his life. His entire country has almost no black people, except for a handful in the capital, and the occasional tourist. He has been raised in a society that, by definition (at least that of our premise) can not be racist, because it is a homogenous white society, and it has been geographically removed from the social issues and migrations that have affected Europe over the centuries. Let’s say this young fellow gets the opportunity to study abroad for a year in America. What happens when a white man leaves a society where he is not racist, and gets off the plane in a society where every white person is necessarily racist? Is there some supernatural transformation that he must undergo during his journey that can only be explained by some esoteric formula of social scientists? And a hypothetical within a hypothetical, what if he becomes absolutely fascinated with hip-hop culture? Does this represent some kind of latent racism, some desire to engage with the oppressed from his newly found vantage point as an oppressor? When he goes back to Iceland with his new found love of “black culture,” is he carrying some vestige of racism with him to a society that is completely without any historical legacy of racism? Is he unknowingly sowing white supremacy into the virgin soil of his untainted homeland?

D) A black man who grew up in Chicago in an economically disadvantaged neighborhood. His harsh circumstances, and exposure to crime and violence throughout his youth have made him deeply distrustful of the American government, police and white people in general. In the age of social media he has been introduced to concepts like social justice and “systemic racism” by his university educated peers. He completely agrees that given America’s history of slavery, and the disparity of resources between social demographics, that only white people can be racist. No matter how much dislike or even hatred him and friends may express for white people, their conviction that only white people can exhibit racism is strong. Eventually, this young black man comes into contact with a local imam and a Muslim community in Chicago. Rather than a life of crime, he turns to the religion of Islam to give his life direction. It may in many ways also be an expression of his deep dissatisfaction with white America, and its association with Christianity. After some time he decides he would like to visit the Middle East for a while to study Arabic. What happens, should this black American man start to experience “prejudice” in this middle eastern society from a non-white majority? Will he continue to hold the belief that only white people can be racist, when he discovers that many conservative Muslim communities hold the view that sub-saharan Africans belong to the lowest class of people?

E) Last one. A young girl raised in Afghanistan and sold as a child bride by her family. After suffering for years being abused and raped by her much older husband, eventually a female cousin and family friends help the girl to escape. Her escape route takes her to Pakistan, where she is taken in by some distant relatives. Since women are the only ones who have ever shown her compassion, she has developed a fear and hatred of men, understandably so. Using her native Pashto language, she is open with her supporters and groups of female acquaintances that she hates men, and that she believes women, by virtue of her own experience, are better human beings than men. Let’s say by some stroke of luck, and hard work studying in school, that she is some how capable of immigrating to the United States. She is overjoyed with the personal freedoms that women are allowed in the US in comparison to Afghanistan and Pakistan, and as her English improves, she begins to relate her generalized hatred of men to her quickly expanding circle of (female) friends. Based on her command of the English language, she readily acknowledges herself as a sexist and a misandrist, and that is ok with her. Until one day, she meets a university educated American peer that informs her, that as a woman, she is incapable of being sexist. How could we explain to her that both the dictionary definition she has learned, as well as her own personally affirmed hatred towards men has been based on a misunderstanding? In her native Pashto “negative beliefs and prejudice towards men” is simply that, and to her “being sexist” is a synonymous concept. (Disclaimer: I have absolutely no understanding of Pashto, so I am only using the Pashto language as an example of a non-English/ non-European cultural-linguistic system, where a concept like “sexism” has likely not been differentiated from “discriminating against the opposite sex” and then further inflated to include concepts like “systems of oppression.”)

Ok, that horse is certainly dead, but I wanted to make it clear from several different angles. If approached from the regressive viewpoint, the questions posed at the end of each hypothetical person’s introduction do not lend themselves to easy answers. Which is precisely the point. They are questions that don’t even merit being asked (if not for the premise being argued against). The point of providing these hypothetical scenarios is simply to highlight the flaw in the collectivist reasoning of “social justice theory” that is being currently popularized. And the problem comes to down “universality” vs. “plurality.”

If we are to entertain such a fundamental premise/assumption of collective identity and collective oppression, then as a first step we must logically accept that; If the “systemic racism/sexism” which operates within the borders of the United States does in fact represent a “system” of any sort, then it must be a fundamentally “closed system.” It must be bound by the geographic and political boundaries of the United States for it to be valid. That is what the cross-cultural examples above were meant to illustrate. However, to make such an admission, would also be to concede that the “systemic” definition of racism and/or sexism, can not possibly constitute a universally valid model for assigning categorical designations of “oppressed” or “oppressor” based on physical attributes. It simply doesn’t work.

And that’s the problem with the ideological lens that the SJW has been trained to use; it is bound by the cultural and linguistic systems of modern western society (broadly speaking), and more specifically, that of the affluent, left-leaning, internet/social network savvy university culture of the United States. In my opinion, there seems to be a particularly paternalistic belief that from such a vantage point, the cultural landscape of the entire globe is not only perfectly comprehensible, but that it may be dictated to with absolute moral clarity. This is especially dangerous, when the implicit assertions of the discourse like “Men=sexist=oppressors” or “White=racist=oppressors” are assumed to be universal. There is no space for nuance in such discourse, much less any room for respecting people as individuals, rather than as members of their particular demographic.

As much as “Social Justice” education materials would assert otherwise, it is patently obvious that the ideological lens this discourse uses is dim, narrow and short-sighted to the extreme. Before ending this section, I will mention again “universalism” and “cultural relativism.” The logical failures of this ideology can be illustrated by its inability to grasp the concept of “cultural pluralism.” They believe that social problems and phenomena they have witnessed in their own society can be universally extrapolated across the globe. Further, there is a delusion inherent in their reasoning that they are either “enlightened” enough about social issues themselves, or by virtue of having recourse to “the experts” in their brand/field of social science, they are somehow gifted with preternatural moral understanding about the world. This allows them at a glance, to know which types of people are inherently “good”(oppressed) or inherently “bad”(oppressors). This presumption of knowledge (itself a kind “discriminatory belief/attitude(b)”) allows them to declare that all members of a particular global demographic are one thing or another.

The more radical an ideologue of this persuasion becomes, so does the world become more stark and dualistic in its contrast of “good/evil”, “us/them” and “haves/have nots”. It all comes down to their collective identity within a presumed hierarchy based on allocation of power and resources. I’m not arguing that social hierarchies based on power and resources don’t exist, obviously. But I am arguing that it is intellectually lazy, and a failure of reason to claim that social hierarchy is universally predicated on race, or that the ability to accumulate wealth or power is predicated on one’s gender. If someone genuinely believes those things, then not only are they denying the agency of free human individuals, but they must also necessarily disregard a vast corpus of historical, comparative and statistical data that attests to the incredible extent to which ethnic relations and gender relations vary across the globe, and have varied throughout history.

PART 6: Whiteness. Available in both “Privilege” and “Guilt” form.

“ What do you mean no discount!?”

In a previous section I said:

The “Power + Privilege = Racism/ Sexism” equation ultimately disavows the autonomy of an individual’s beliefs/actions whenever there is perceived to be unequal treatment in a given situation between individuals of different demographics.

In this section, I will use a few examples to illustrate the logic at work behind “collectivizing identity” to highlight my analysis of “white privilege” as it relates to the “Power + Privilege = racism” equation. To do this I offer you two articles from the watered-down lifestyle magazine posing as socially aware journalism, the one and only Huffington Post, which you can peruse at your leisure;

1. “Why I’m a racist…..”

2. “An Open Letter from an Admitted Racist”

Basically these two articles present the emotional accounts of two white people “waking up” to the fact that they have been unconsciously racist their entire lives. They have, with help, and effort, (the Orwellian process of “unlearning”) come to realize how they are beneficiaries of unearned privilege in an oppressive society, simply by virtue of their skin color.

Interestingly, and crucially, both authors assert that they were raised to treat others equally, considered themselves open-minded and tolerant, and never harbored any ill will or dislike for people of other ethnicities. So how precisely then, as individuals, are they racist? It’s a doozy of a question. If you can read their articles and, digging through their own words, figure out how they are racist individuals (*keyword), as opposed to being racist by virtue of immutable physical characteristics from birth, then please get back to me. Of course, for the regressive ideology under the microscope here, it absolutely wants people to believe that racism and sexism have nothing to do with an individual’s actions/beliefs. Rather, the course of history has determined which ethnic groups or which sex will be born with the “racism gene” or the “sexism gene.” For them, being racist or sexist is irrelevant to the content of one’s character (except perhaps to imagine racism or sexism as hereditary or in pathological terms, whereby their ideological prescriptions may serve as the cure). Conversely, those who are born into a minority demographic are already victims at birth, born to a life of “oppression,” their individual capacity for self-determination has already been undermined.

These articles support my assertion about how the beliefs/ actions of the individual really don’t matter in the formulation of such a concept of racism and sexism. Like the article published recently about the elementary school in New York teaching white children they are born racist, such is the ultimate trajectory of this ideology if it is allowed to move forward unimpeded through society’s educational quarters. In my mention of that article, I made a reference to the concept of “original sin” and I think it is very apt. 
 
 So let’s talk about the key concept in those Huffpo articles: “white privilege” ….. or is it “white guilt”??

This is the new “original sin” for the modern western world, which as I see it is “outgrowing Christianity” but “struggling with diversity.” To be fair, when you really begin to understand how the course of European / American history has adversely affected the rest of the world, it can definitely cut you pretty deep (especially if those negative aspects are never weighed in proper relation to the positive developments that have emerged from Western society). As a self-aware, conscious and critically thinking youth in the USA, it can be very hard to get a proper handle and a positive perspective on the world. On the one hand, you’ve got a bunch of flag-waving lunatics battering on about how infallible and wonderful America is, while on the other hand, you have staunchly anti-establishment, and uncompromising leftists asserting how shitty the white man and all of his cultural contributions have been, demanding that “Everything must go!” In such a cultural quagmire, a lot of people get caught in one current or the other, and end up in one extreme camp or the other. And unfortunately, those that do succeed in keeping a moderate and critical perspective, seldom if ever have a very noticeable voice on the cultural landscape. Arguments tend to be initiated and carried on by the extremists.

Discussing the relationship between “white guilt” and “white privilege” is both intriguing and provocative. While tempting, it is probably an over-generalization to say that “white guilt” and “white privilege” are essentially the same concept, except articulated from oppositional perspectives. Personally, I can sense there is some clear overlap between the two concepts in the abstract, however I also recognize that in terms of actual social phenomenon and its related discourse, their relationship probably looks more like a classic Venn diagram. Indeed, there is much to consider and I can’t say I’ve settled on any particular interpretation of their relationship.

First let’s consider the “original sin” idea, relative to the commonly espoused admonishment towards white people that they must “check their privilege.” For the (white) social justice ideologue, “acknowledging one’s privilege” as part of an “oppressive” demographic is a kind of self-flagellation, or a confessional act. The two huffpo pieces above kind of bear this out if you care to read them. When I see people insinuate how all white people, all men, or all straight people “have to learn” or have to “check their privilege”, or more tellingly “unlearn” their privilege, I always think about North Korea.

Did that seem out of place? Came out of no where didn’t it? Hahah. Why North Korea!? That’s because in North Korea, community units, or section teams in the work place have to attend obligatory meetings every week. At these meetings, it’s common for a person or three to stand up and have a heart to heart with the group where they will outline recent transgressions, everything from immoral thoughts to petty offenses. It is often a confessional for “reactionary thinking” or “anti-party” trains of thought. It actually builds group trust and unity through compelling people to admit / acknowledge their faults and thereby reaffirm their commitment to the group.

So I assert that the two huffpo “testimonials” provided above are essentially a modern western variation of a similar ritual act; an unholy synthesis of the original sin psychology / Catholic confession-booth, and the communist self-confession/ absolution ritual tailored to fit the modern USA, and professed in a public forum. It is essentially an act of virtue signaling and self-denigration that informs the in-group of a person’s allegiance to the greater cause/ movement, a testament of one’s “ally-ship” with the righteous struggle. It might seem like I crafted that description in a purely figurative manner…but I think that is actually what we are witnessing.

Lets consider different people’s reactions to those articles to get a sense of what I mean about white privilege versus white guilt. For a hardcore progressive SJW, these articles will be viewed in a favorable light, and the authors will likely be praised for understanding, or beginning to “unlearn” their “privilege.” But what have they done really? They have accepted personal complacency, and potentially complicity in furthering/supporting a system that perpetuates oppression. In the eyes of the SJW, these acknowledgments from those with self-professed “white privilege” become “proof” of the systemic oppression which we have been discussing.

But what about from a different angle? Obviously if a hardcore white conservative reads these huffpo pieces, they will scoff. The word “cuck” might come up in a response. But we should try to understand that, from the perspective of someone who does not buy into the collectivization of identity, especially someone who has never been exposed to “social justice” theory, they will not be predisposed towards entertaining the idea that they carry some kind of special benefit or power simply by being white. In fact, the lower you move down the economic ladder among white people, the more ridiculous the idea is likely to seem to them. So instead, an assertion of one’s “white privilege” which the SJW sees as a positive or constructive, comes across to many as a display of weakness, and specifically as a confession of the author’s feelings of guilt for being white.

So which is it? Privilege or guilt? Well, my bias is probably showing, but to attempt the most objective criticism I can of the “white privilege” idea as it is presented in most SJW/ buzzfeed/ huffpo/ MTV / Guardian / Salon “journalism,” I want to leave the question open ended for now. Instead let’s emphasize the idea of subjectivism as a philosophical touch point. We must accept that different perspectives exist, and that no single perspective has a monopoly on truth. These perspectives in turn reflect differing, and often oppositional worldviews. These worldviews in turn represent different cultural backgrounds…and yes, I have returned to “cultural pluralism” and my insistence that not everything is black and white (pardon the pun, it was bound to happen).

The social justice ideology in the USA and the West, tends towards universal/ absolutist statements in discourse, and categorical designations in regards to “systems of power.” Their explanation of “white privilege” is basically in line with this tendency. In their eyes “white privilege” is a universal for all white people. But let’s take a step back and consider that. Even limiting our query to the USA alone, can we reasonably assume that “whiteness” is an equally beneficial characteristic to possess for all white people? Upon reflection, I am of the opinion, that no, it is not. Note clearly, that I am not rejecting the idea that some benefits to being white may exist in some situations, I am simply stating that as a universal claim, the idea that “All white people benefit from being white” is unjustifiable and frankly absurd. Let me elaborate with two general points on the concept;

1.As the SJWs and their related literature often state, “racism,” “oppression,” “privilege” and a host of other terms are tied to “unequal distribution of resources” (to quote the goodmenproject again). That is, much of the privilege they allege of white people is evidenced by the distribution of economic capital. The idea is that a majority of wealth in America is held by white people, and this therefore ostensibly supports the claim that all white people possess economic privilege. Despite the fact that the paradigm being described here is a dichotomous one (ie “White = have / Black = have not”) and thus overly simplistic, there is also no empirical evidence that any quality of “whiteness” can by itself generate wealth. In rebuttal to this observation, what follows will likely be that “whiteness” may not generate wealth, but it merely “provides opportunities” for economic gain that “blackness” does not.

It is a given that the majority of the population in the USA is white. It is also a given that a majority of wealthy families in America are white, and it is also a given that these families and their related networks of businesses, friends, and other families will practice nepotism. If this were the only information we chose to observe, then we might be inclined to accept the dichotomous model presented. However, there are plenty of poor, destitute and homeless white people in America who have lived in poverty for generations. Clearly, “whiteness” is not “providing opportunities” for all of them.

Even if we continue down the rabbit hole following the discursive loopty-loops of SJW logic, and accept that “some of” these white folks have better chances at economic success than “most of” the black people in the same position…eventually we will arrive at the realization that individual circumstance can not ultimately validate the socially universal model they propose. The strongest argument for the primary economic aspect of “white privilege” is to be found in pie graphs denoting distribution of wealth by race, without reference to graphs demonstrating levels of poverty by demographic/ region. What I’m getting at is that from the perspective of selectively blind collectivists, there seems to have been a conflation (intentional?) or confusion (unintentional?), of the concepts “white” and “wealthy.”

Since the social sciences have attempted to model themselves after the natural sciences in their adoption of the scientific method for purposes of collecting data and testing hypotheses, I find it most fitting to use a well known maxim in this instance: “Correlation does not equal causation.”

Simply because the majority of wealth is held by white people (regardless of our opinions or beliefs about the fairness of such a reality), it does not mean they are wealthy because they are white. To reduce the capacity for wealth accumulation/generation down to one’s ethnicity sounds a lot like popular racist stereotypes about Jewish people that we are all familiar with. The wealth of America’s richest families is most likely due to historical circumstance and the actions of their ancestors. Their skin color is an external characteristic, and can not possibly account for the historical motivations that resulted in their present wealth. After this explanation, if you think that you can judge the historical record and assume that “whiteness”(a relatively modern concept) motivated colonialism and the slave trade, then I fear there is little hope of getting through to you. 
 
 (I’d also like to just throw out there that throughout most of human history, such economic “privileges” like; having a stable and marketable occupation, living in a prosperous community, having a store of food for the winter, and a warm, safe shelter to protect you from the elements and the threat of outsiders…these things would probably have been called “blessings” ..but that is just an aside….)

2. But what about the non-economic aspects of “white privilege”? I would contend that the collectivist identitarian lean is primarily founded on the premise of wealth inequality, so from my perspective, this aspect would seem to be a much smaller part of the “white privilege” mythos. However, I would also contend that if we were to find genuine examples of “white privilege,” they are surely to be qualitative in nature as opposed to quantitative (ie not related to money). What I mean by that is that in certain situations, it may be more socially convenient, beneficial, or even safe to be a white person as opposed to a black person. The situation consistently presented to us, ‘black men dealing with police officers’, may be one such example. However, that is only if we assume the policeman in the scenario is white. A black officer would not permit the hypothetical scenario to proceed down the line their premise necessitates.

Another example of a situation where “whiteness” may benefit one in some social manner might be moving into a new neighborhood. If all the neighbors are white, it might be much easier to form relationships and acclimate to the community, than if one were the new and only black residents in the neighborhood. So objectively speaking, I think we can agree in certain situations, there may actually be some social advantages to being white….

HOWEVER, (and it is a however in capital letters as you can plainly see) there are also potentially some situations where it may be beneficial to be a person of color as well. (Affirmative Action?) For example, reverse the situation of the neighborhood scenario, a white family or resident moves into a neighborhood that is completely black; wouldn’t they face a similar situation of acclimating to the community and forming friendships with neighbors? Consider any hypothetical space where a white person might be a minority among people of color; the hip-hop scene, an inner city basketball league. These situations are likely to invite some scenes of awkward or difficult social interaction due to difference in skin color. Again, the benefit may or may not be manifest in any quantitative sense (ie. how much money can the white rapper make? Or how much game time or attention from the coach does the white kid get?). I mean ‘benefit’ generally to indicate the “ease of social interaction.”

I give these examples, not to argue that there is absolute parity between the situation of white communities and black communities. After all, the wealth data discussed above would refute that in a general sense. As limited as they may be, what these examples offer is simply the observation that any non-economic-related aspects of “white privilege” are necessarily dependent on specific and relative social circumstance (ie. it depends on the specific individuals involved how easy or difficult their instance of social interaction may be).

And THAT brings me to my main point behind the #2 I typed a few paragraphs ago; social circumstance varies between individuals (duh? right). That is to say, the experience of “whiteness,” however you imagine it, is not uniform between all white people. And therefore, even if we did find clear identifiable examples of “white privilege” in practice, it would STILL be a stretch of logic to claim that white person A benefits from “white privilege” in the same manner as white persons B through Z. Further, I want to emphasize here that an assumption of “privilege” based on ethnicity can only be viable in situations where there is social interaction between people of different ethnic groups. This means that “white privilege” can not exist in a community where everyone is white. If you remove the “oppressed” demographic from the hypothetical equation then there is no one for the white population to have “privilege” over. Make sense?

The last paragraph may still be a little murky and abstract so I want to qualify it. Imagine white dude A is living in LA and has grown up there all his life. White dude B was raised and lives in the sticks of Idaho potato country. Now let’s imagine these two fellas both read the huffpo articles I started this section with. White dude A in LA is probably more likely entertain the idea of “white privilege” than white dude B. Why? Quite simply, because there are no black people in Idaho potato country. The concept of “white privilege” will not translate culturally to someone who doesn’t interact with black people. And that’s the point! “Whiteness” can’t benefit all white people equally if white people don’t have contact with, or interact with different ethnicities at a universally equal rate. If there is little to no interaction between a white person and non-white people, then there will be little to no possibility for any “privilege” to be made manifest for that white person.

Another thing, these ethnically determined categories of “privileged” and “disadvantaged” really begs the question; How will a truly equal society ever be achieved if the current approach to “multiculturalism” necessitates collectively assigning “default privilege” to a population because of their numerical majority, or their possession of greater capital? …. You’re just going to end up on a mad, pointless, and never ending quest to even out demographics and wealth disparity. But back to “whiteness”….

So if “privilege” is relative to social circumstance, and not all white people experience the same social circumstances, then it would seem to me, that logically “white privilege” is not a universally applicable concept. Which by extension would imply that ultimately, it is not a valid concept at all (at least not in the manner it has been popularized).

Additionally, I wonder if I am the only one, who when reading articles like the huffpo “Why I am a racist..” and seeing a statement like “The responsibility for having (white privilege) isn’t on me; but the responsibility for what I do with it is.” is reminded of another cultural concept involving “whiteness” from the not so distant past. Of course, no commentary on “white privilege” can be complete without remembering the “white man’s burden.” I sense a certain paternalism in statements and sentiments like the one above that imply white people, by virtue of having their privilege and power, are morally obligated to help the less powerful, and less capable. If there isn’t an echo of the “white man’s burden” mentality in much of the posturing and virtue signaling that accompanies the “white privilege” discourse on the left, then I must be crazy. 
 
 The primary difference I can sense between then and now is that the during the colonial era of European history, the idea was that less developed and less “civilized” societies needed the assistance of Europeans to deliver them from “barbarity.” Whereas “checking” and utilizing “white privilege” today includes a kind of after-the-fact remorse over the injustices that European civilization has already inflicted on non-white populations. But the idea of being morally bound to use the more advantageous and capable nature of “being white” to help the less fortunate who can’t help themselves, in my view, remains fundamentally the same. And it’s still demeaning and still racist. The idea that non-white people require the help and guidance of white people is a slap in the face to self-determination (both individual and collective). And declaring moral obligations based on one’s skin color is not only a fundamentally prejudiced action in and of itself, but it is also an attempt to manipulate the generally kind and caring nature of individuals to guilt them into feeling responsible for generations of collective injustice. And in that sense the “guilt” aspect of “white privilege” is made clear. (Wonder if I could posit a conceptual equation of my own and land a grant at some washed up university somewhere with “white guilt + the white man’s burden = white privilege”… Hhhmmm?)

To conclude this section, I assert that what is commonly labeled “white privilege” is in most cases more correctly identified as “economic privilege” but since wealth can not be categorically determined by physical characteristics, the intellectually lazy will seize upon common denominators in order to make differentiation between the “haves” and “have nots” that much easier. And that brings me a bit closer to end of this beast of a paper. Let’s take a moment to identify exactly where this “have/ have not = oppressor/ oppressed” ideology is coming from …an unassuming little town called Marxism, that you can find out in the middle of a happy little country called Liberal Academia.

PART 7: Celebrating Marginalization. With your host, Cultural Marxism!!

“I’m leaving a review on yelp right now!”

Ok, no more beating around the bush. Let’s talk about the academic setting that comprises the beating heart powering the current wave of regressive identity politics. The largest percentage of what I have been referring to as the “SJW movement” is probably made up of “millenials.” They are the fourth generation product of a campaign that has embedded the tenets of cultural marxism within the USA’s educational system, the cultural sphere and to some degree in governmental bodies as well. Almost anywhere you look on the cultural landscape these days, and in most of the current social debates in Europe and throughout the Anglo-sphere, the influence of this ideology is evident. To break it down:

From the 1930s-1950s the East German scholars from the Frankfurt school began training some of the early influential marxist intellectuals in the USA. This crop of intellectuals, along with others, would be part of the inspiration behind the hippie cultural movement of the 60’s as well as second wave feminism. The people of that era who raised families would see the highest rate of college educated children in the history of the country. This era, the 80s-90s, would see the academy in the USA move decidedly to the left. Educators, academics, and government officials who entered their professions during this era, find themselves today in the role of university professors, public school teachers, curriculum developers, and/or political mentors. And now, that generation’s educational legacy is being made completely manifest in the current crop of millennials we see across the west today. Of course, millennial college students can’t be generalized as wholly this or that, and a majority are probably perfectly reasonable young people, but it is clear that there is a sizable number of young indoctrinated legionaries out there crusading for their causes under the tenets of cultural marxism. And ironically/ tragically most of them don’t even realize they are cultural marxists. {As an aside; there are some fascinating parallels between the activities of the Red Guard of China’s cultural revolution and some of the more extreme student groups emerging on US college campuses today (ex. BAMN on the west coast). I’m willing to bet, we will see even more striking similarities in the years ahead.}

Just in case the term “cultural marxism” is new to any readers out there, a highly abbreviated as-duncan-understands-it explanation goes like this. Classical marxism asserted that the working class would have to overthrow the landed gentry/royalty and their bourgeoisie supporters in order to achieve a socially egalitarian utopia. It is important to remember that the focus was originally on economic disparity. The aims included redistribution of wealth, the abolition of private property, and communal ownership of the means of production. Fast forward to post-World War 1. A certain Marxist scholar named Gramsci went to jail, did a whole bunch of thinking and wrote a bunch of journals. Some scholars at the Frankfurt school in Germany thought his writing was pure fire, and they got hyped but ultimately came to the somewhat sobering conclusion that; Marx was essentially right about the economic schtick, but the ol’ brotha failed to acknowledge the obstacles that culture would always present in persuading the proletariat to mobilize. This is what they interpreted from the work of young comrade Gramsci. They reasoned that the proletariat is unlikely to take up arms and initiate global revolution as long as they are held back by notions of tradition, heritage, and most crucially, religion (specifically Christianity).

So what do you think those fools at the Frankfurt school decided to do? …..
 Well, turns out they just read a bunch of books. Haha. No, but what they did, quite successfully to be honest, was to transform classical Marxist thought into a methodology for interpreting and critiquing artifacts of culture, specifically literature and theater. They essentially re-evaluated the long term aims of classical marxism, went back to the drawing boards and re-formulated a strategy to achieve them. I’ve heard this strategy referred to as “the long march through culture.” The idea ‘was’ that in order to “prep” society for the great revolution, the slow, slow, slow work of eroding the cultural norms of Christendom had to be completed first. Then, it was reasoned, when society was stripped of its moral compass bound to its traditions, the stark reality of wealth inequality would be laid bare, and make it that much easier to persuade the masses to unite in revolt.
 
 HOWEVER (another one in capitals letters) things have not exactly stayed the intended course. “Cultural marxism” which began with the above premise, and ostensibly still rests upon it, has actually diverged quite a bit from the “classical” aims of marxism. The reasons for this are to be found in the historical and cultural developments of the 20th century; specifically the perceived failures of communism, its associated indictment, the collapse of the soviet union, and the political as well as cultural hegemony achieved by the United States on a global scale. Given the unfavorable climate and unlikely success of communism in the west, the original initiatives of the Frankfurt school and its “critical theory” began to adapt/ transform to the cultural paradigm of American society. This process began in the USA at Columbia University, when the Frankfurt school’s influence was transplanted there (and also where the lovely textbook that provided the impetus for this piece was published not so many years ago).

Because of the priority that American culture placed on individual self-determination, and the right to private property, alongside the incredible success of the American economy in the post WW2 decades, it was realized that the aims of classical marxism would have virtually no chance of success. So what the cultural method of marxism did in the USA was to began evaluating “systems of oppression” beyond economic terms, and sowing “cultural cynicism” in an effort to erode the christian traditions respected by most of conservative America. Their cultural critiques/ literature sought to highlight injustice and “marginalization” between different groups in society, example black/white, man/woman, straight/gay. Essentially, the focus on economic disparity that defined classical marxism, was reformulated for America’s multi-ethnic society, into a strategy meant to inspire different elements of the ‘subaltern’ to revolt against the perceived “hegemonic elite.” This was done with less regard for actual distribution of wealth, and more regard for historical injustice and perceived social demographic inequality as predicated by race/ gender/ etc.

To do this, as is plainly visible today, “cultural marxism” via critical theory crafted narratives that intentionally conflate demographic characteristics with “systems of oppression.” For this model, obviously, the “straight, white, christian, male” is the villain par-excellence. Most disconcerting though, is that very few SJWs seem to realize that inciting minorities to antagonize majorities is not a sound strategy to accomplish a true redistribution of power/ privilege…and especially not a redistribution of wealth. All it can do is weaken the citizenry in total, which simply allows for a stronger Big Brother in the long run. Which is precisely why the leftist elements of the state/ media are on board with the whole thing. The SJW crusaders are “useful idiots” that are being manipulated to inflame social tensions, promote cynicism in culture, distrust of the public at large, and they may ultimately become a tool for violence that can be applied as PROBLEM, to provide the necessary pretense for a forceful REACTION, thereby allowing the state to arrive at a preplanned SOLUTION which will always translate to increased state power, and the loss of individual liberties.

A long time ago, in a paragraph far far away I mentioned the goodmenproject’s explanation of “racism” as it related to “unequal distribution of resources between racial groups” and I said it was a red flag in more ways than one. The first red flag obviously, was that their definition of racism is fundamentally not concerned with the beliefs or actions of individuals. And the second “red” flag was the hardly veiled pinko commie bullshit. In their critique of, and influence on modern culture/ academia, sites like the goodmenproject et al. along with the content of the textbook I discussed in the first section, fits the cultural marxist discourse and critical theory method and to a T. And I say ‘hardly veiled’ because we have reached a point where it is not even necessary for them to mince their words. Their true colors are shining brightly, and modern mainstream media along with left-leaning urban America seems to be totally ok with that. These authors/ academics are so blatantly prioritizing and encouraging demographic sectarianism, that it borders on lunacy. And for those few who openly identify as cultural marxists, if you read this, I have a message for you. Note, the majority of SJWs as I see it, do not fully realize what they are actually a part of..so what follows is not directed at them. But for those that do embrace the tenets of cultural marxism and indulge in the most radical musings of “critical theory” and its attendant ideology…you should be ashamed of yourselves.

And I say that not simply as personal opinion. Even from the perspective of classical marxism, the current strategies and trajectories of the movement are completely antithetical to the original aims and philosophies of Marx. Cultural marxism as it being manifest and practiced in the West today is only encouraging sectarianism AMONG the proletariat that they were originally intending to persuade to take up arms against the royalty and bourgeoisie. The supposedly noble goals of the original communist manifesto…have somehow been perverted and reduced to… “black people should rise up against white people” and “women should divest themselves of relations with men and expunge masculine influence from society” and “gay people should reject hetero-normative culture”….really Cultural Marxists!? Really!? Is this truly the height of your intellectual endeavors? Well, it’s pathetic. Marx would be ashamed. Just like your parents.

Obviously there is staggering wealth disparity and social inequity across the globe, and the financial/ banking structures of the developed world, and the old money elite of the US and Europe should be held accountable for many aspects of the current global status quo. The need for a massive reordering of the world’s economic structure seems both necessary and inevitable. But we need to think long and hard about what these regressive ideologies and redefinitions of racism and sexism are really going to accomplish in that regard moving forward. As I see it, all they can really accomplish is the fracturing and weakening of the cultural fabric of society to such a degree that people willingly accept the need for the state to moderate and prescribe the acceptable relations between different demographics. The idea of “safe spaces” is ideological gold for an authoritarian government, because it provides a pretense to increase surveillance and muscle for the purpose of making sure people are “comfortable” and that no one gets “offended.” So let’s ask ourselves; how will incentivizing tyranny from the government in our local communities, ever contribute to a more global egalitarian economic framework?

Personally, I’m not going to hold my breath waiting for an answer to that particular question.

Conclusion

“Alright dear, but I’m only leaving 10 percent.”

And with that I feel like I’ve come full circle. I meant the previous section as a kind of capstone to the whole thing. This work was a way for me to meticulously walk through my criticisms of the regressive approach to collective identity, redefining racism, and the concept of white privilege. And then to arrive at a brief image of the larger ideological context that is currently framing these debates in the west. Before I sign off, I have two more things I want to say, some words of caution/advice.

First, to those of you who have taken to crying “bigotry” every time someone disagrees with you; to those who cry “racist!” whenever a white person criticizes some aspect of collectivist identity politics or “PC culture”; To those who cry “misogynist!” when a man criticizes some aspect of modern third wave feminism. Take a look in the mirror if you have one handy. You are not doing yourself or your cause any favors. You ARE the boy who cried wolf. Remember that.

Every time you make an accusation of “sexist” or “racist” and revert to baseless ad hominem attacks of your ideological opponents, believe it or not you are incrementally decreasing the power those words hold. And not only that, given the definitions of racism and sexism we have been discussing, if you accept and assert wholesale that “all men are sexist” and “all whites are racist” or the corollary “women can’t be sexist” and “non-white people can’t be racist”, then every time you use the insult “racist” or “sexist” to describe someone who disagrees with you, are are inadvertently normalizing the idea that being racist or sexist is perfectly natural for white people / men. Eventually, people will either never take you seriously (which is the best case scenario) or they may simply reach a point of conditioning (thanks to you) that they will cease to consider words like “racist” or “sexist” as possessing any negative meaning at all. Don’t be the boy who cried wolf, because when a genuine-honest-to-god-racist-AF wolf comes along, people may just shrug their shoulders because they’ve been conditioned to believe that being racist or sexist is something hereditary or pathological and can’t be helped anyways. And if Western society wasn’t already screwed, it certainly will be at that point. Words have power, and you all are abusing the hell out of them. Their power bar is already in the red. CALM DOWN for the love of everyone…please! We’re gonna need those items later in the game.

And the last word of caution is for parents, future parents, and soon to be college students. PAY ATTENTION to what is going on in your schools! Check the curriculum and the reading lists, talk to teachers. Parents, don’t let schools raise your children! You have a moral obligation to raise critical-thinking and empowered young people that will inherit the society you leave behind. Cultural marxism has gained the foothold it has because people turned a blind eye to the content of secondary and tertiary education, in favor of test scores, and “the college experience.” College became a right of passage instead of a privilege intended to cultivate critical thinking, applied reason, and demonstrable SKILLS that would aid in the pursuit of a meaningful and stable career later in life. The future role of the university; everything from curriculum, enrollment rates / standards, as well as overall function/necessity to society; are all topics that deserve serious and dispassionate discussion. The entire field of the social sciences also appears set for a reckoning (ala philology, or early anthropology). The ideological contention between collectivism and individualism will be inextricable from all aspects of that discussion. But alas, that is a topic for an entirely different rant.

After reading this whole thing (if anyone even did), my hope is that at the very least, someone may be inspired to reevaluate their own perspective, or maybe a parent might consider their child’s schooling with fresh eyes. If either of those things happens, then I think all these hours preparing this will have been worth it. Regardless of political orientation, pretty much everybody seems to be of the consensus that America is in for a rough time in the years ahead. Part of those rough years is going consist of an ideological battle in the political, educational, and cultural arenas that can best be framed by orientations of ‘collectivist’ versus ‘individualist.’ To be clear, neither one is wholly good or wholly bad. As with everything, moderation is what makes Joe/ Josie a productive worker bee, while simultaneously making them a happy contented person off the clock (or if you’re really doing the whole life thing right, then there is no distinction between work/play and you can evolve to “a contented human in one’s profession”). Right now as I see the emerging patterns on the left, I believe the dangers of extreme collectivism currently outweigh the dangers of rabid nationalism/ staunch individualism on the right. But that is not to say it will remain so forever, just my particular observation of how things have been shaping up in the 2nd decade of the 21st century.

Anyways, keep your critical eyes peeled, read opposing perspectives on things, and try to stay informed. And for Jah sake don’t let your children grow up believing that structuralist/systemic racist/sexist nonsense. Teach them that people should be judged by the content of their character, not their skin color or their sex. Make sure they know that we’re all in this together, and that no child should feel guilty or ashamed of things that happened 100s of years ago. On the one hand, make sure your children are raised with love and shown how to love others as well. But don’t raise no dummies. On the other hand, teach them to be critical thinkers, encourage them to ask the difficult questions (as opposed to supplying them with the answers beforehand), make sure they know that authority figures can be wrong. Encourage them to develop a capacity for logic and argumentation, even if their most regular opponent is you, their parent. If you can overlook the content of their argument, let them argue merely for the sake of cultivating their skills of discursive reasoning. They will be better for it in the long term.

I assume many stopped reading a while back, others probably felt like this turned into a fantastic ramble by the end…which is a fair assessment. I hope that at least some of you enjoyed this, and that you might yourself take interest in the lines of thought /discourse that I brought up. And of course, I love to discuss social/cultural/political topics like these, so I’m happy to hear your opinions/ objections/ compliments/ criticisms. Since I wrote this primarily for my fb network, I’ll tend towards more frank and expansive discussion there, but if someone on medium would like to engage in discussion, I’m happy to hear from you. Also, if I said something that made you feel uncomfortable, or offended you, feel free to tell me why, and I’m honored to have had the opportunity. I guess that’s everything. Last but not least, I hope you all have a wonderful day.
 
 Much Love,
 Me.