Every so often, some aspiring blogger will label this group or that group “the last group it is still okay to discriminate against.” We’ve seen this label applied to obese Americans, Asian-Americans, Satanists, and on down the line. But if there really is such a group, it is probably conservatives who don’t have the decency to be white and male. Because it’s ever so much harder to slam conservatism as a racist, sexist, xenophobic philosophy when its representatives are minorities.
The left is now waking up to one of its grandest follies. For as long as most readers have been alive, Democrats have subtly (and not-so-subtly) positioned Republicans as all the “ists” you could want. And it was easy, to be fair. You took a look at the top Republican leaders, and it was a sea of old white men as far as the eye could see. And when old white men speak out against affirmative action, welfare, and overbearing “equality” laws, it’s easy to cast them as bigots and avoid the tricky business of, you know, actually refuting their arguments.
But America’s demographics are rapidly changing, and so are those of the Republican Party. Now you have conservative politicians and pundits from an extraordinarily diverse background. You have Bobby Jindal, a fierce opponent of Obama’s immigration policy. You have Carly Fiorina, challenging Hillary Clinton on sexism and doing a damn fine job of it. Clarence Thomas, Tim Scott, Laura Ingraham, Mia Love, the list goes on and on. Polls show African-American neurologist Ben Carson enjoying significant support in his own quest for the White House.
And the left hates it. They have lost their easy advantage. How can a white liberal look at Ben Carson and declare that they know more about civil rights than he does? How can a Democrat with XY chromosomes tell Carly Fiorina that he knows better what needs to be done to help American women? Sure, it can be done, but it requires looking beyond the superficial. It means you have to put all of your talk about “dog whistles” back in the closet and actually make an argument of substance. Uh oh.
Most of these minorities have one thing in common: they prefer the concept of assimilation to that of multiculturalism. None of them deny that they are Indian or female or black; they simply don’t believe those tags are nearly as important as the fact that they are American citizens. That they are patriots. That this country works best when it is a true melting pot and not a divisive stew.
For liberals, your ethnic or gender identity trumps everything else. And if you aren’t parroting the same old lines about equality and discrimination, you are betraying your in-group. Individualism, after all, is a concept the left simply can’t get behind.