tv Heritage Discussion on Identity Politics CSPAN November 26, 2018 5:11pm-6:45pm EST
the bad is there were a number of items they found. we do not have all of the details yet. or they need to take corrective action. there is still a lot of work that needs to be done. and, there are pockets within dod, i believe the national reconnaissance office, highly classified what they do so we don't know anything about the details but apparently, they were actually able to pass a clean audit. >> did they find ways to save money? did we reap any awards -- rewards? i am the director of the washington, d.c. office of the queue for. i am honored to be cohosting this event with heritage. we are cohosting with mike gonzalez. i want to thank kay james, mike, and all of the colleagues at heritage for allowing us to host this event.
i would like to offer a couple of quick thoughts on why we are doing this and why this is so important. some of you may have read a book written "identities." i thought he had a pretty good and useful introduction where he offers a global perspective on the origins of identity politics. and he says "20th-century politics has been organized on a left-right spectrum defined by economic issues. the left wanting more equality and the right wanting more freedom. that spectrum appears to be giving way in many respects to one identified by identity. less focused on broad economic equality and now on the wide variety of groups perceived as being marginalized. the right is redefining itself as patriots perceived to protect national identity and an identity that is often
specifically identified with race, religion. while this remains important, fukuyama h says there are motives of political resentment. leaders have mobilized followers around the perception that the groups dignity has been disparaged or otherwise disregard it. demands bys intense the group in question. the modern phenomena in known as identity politics extends both two nations as well as groups of citizens within nations and can arise with nationality, religion, or gender. why is this significant? his answer is both provocative and intimidating. encompasses atics large part of the political struggles of the contemporary world from democratic revolutions to new social movements including islam is him
and the politics on american university campuses." that is quite a challenge for one panel to resolve. no matter how insightful they may be. i think we can all agree that understanding identity politics an essentialis endeavor and one we will be returning to in the future. thank you for letting us be cohosts and i would like to invite mike up to the podium. mike g.: i am mike gonzalez, a senior fellow here at heritage. i want to welcome you all. it is kind of a dreary day to come out but i want to thank you all. i would like to ask you to turn off your phones. we do have cameras here. c-span is with us. we are going online as well. i have to introduce people. i have toonder why introduce really famous people. but for the purpose of the people watching us online and on way,roadcast, -- by the
peter made it from chicago. he just landed. wow, i thought you would be here at 5:30 p.m. i would like to welcome peter berkowitz from the hoover institution. john fonte from the hudson -- hudson institute. michael lind. heather macdonald from the manhattan institute and andrew sullivan from the new york magazine. is aould say andrew blogger but you could also say he invented logging. because he did. -- blogging. because he did. what mike and i did was we brought together the best minds we could think up on this issue of identity politics to discuss not just the nature of the problem that some solutions to it. a friend of mine told me and he saw the list of speakers -- heather macdonald, michael lynn, peter berkowitz, these people have very strong personalities.
how are you going to control that? i said i'm not going to control them. sullivanthink andrew has ever written anything -- has ever read anything i have written. john fonte is a good friend and mentor and he disagrees with me a lot. it is not a question of agreement. just different perspectives. we are all here because we agree that this is a problem and we want a solution. we approach it from different perspectives. my own solution is to stop the government from coercing us into different categories. -- hereyou will heal other perspectives. we will go alphabetically. they will each have about 10 minutes. will they finished, we open to questions from the audience. after that, we will have some wine and hors d'oeuvres out in the foyer. about 6:30 p.m. macdonald has-
agreed to sign her autographs. peter, would you like to catch your breath? let us welcome john fonte. [applause] identity politics has been with us a long time, italy's 50 years. i am not going to discuss obama and trump or evens that have occurred in this century. but talk about the 20th century, and the historical background. identity politics could be understood as a trinity. a triad of multiculturalism, diversity project and critical theory. there is a soft and hard multiculturalism. nine, thes the celebration of ethnic subcultures including st. patrick's day. not really part of identity
politics. on the other hand, hard multiculturalism has damaged american society. a multicultural argument runs along the following lines. the united states should be thought of as a multicultural society in which different , african-americans, hispanic americans, asian americans, native americans, and women have their own values, histories, and identities separate from and sometimes in opposition to dominant anglo white male culture. this argument has consequences. statey 1991, new york released its social studys correct -- social studies curriculum. one nation, many people's. referenced to the american peoples as opposed to the american people abound in the national history standards put out in 1990 four and 1995. for example, one for standard declares "students should
understand how big business, heavy industry, and mechanized farming transformed the american people's in the late 19th century. by inverting the language of american unity, the concept of the peoples of the united states creates a counter patriotic symbolism that subordinates the --. this is deliberate, rhetorical subversion. or over, the national history standards described in a formation of the united states as a product not of western instead as a but convergence of three civilizations. european, west african-islamic, and amer indian. historically inaccurate view is dominant today. it is incorporated into the new ap history course that just came out. second, diversity. atre are two ways of looking diversity. first, there is a diversity that
comes from free choices in a free society. this is the interplay of the institutions of civil society. the traditional pluralism of american civic life. the second is the diversity project or diversity as a goal of society. the standard measure for achieving this type of diversity is statistical quality for groups or group proportional is him. the internal logic of this argument is that in a given labor market, if 10% of all potential workers are asian-americans and 50% are had a then 10% of all job gorgeous, accountants, park rangers, attorneys, electricians and so one should be filled proportionally. 10% by asian-americans and 50% by women. if this does not happen, and in a free society it never does, there is a problem of
underrepresentation or a lack of diversity that must be salt. racial, ethnic, and gender group proportional is him ignores how people behave in free societies or indeed in any society that has ever existed in the history of the world. professors donald horwitz of duke, meyer from m.i.t. and thomas from stanford have spent ther careers studying distribution of gender groups in numerous occupations across the planet and they have found no evidence to support the assumption that without discrimination different groups would be equally distributed against -- across all occupations. all across the world in every occupation some ethnic groups are underrepresented and some over -- overrepresented. , the east indians as dentists and veterinarians.
industry inthe wine brazil and california and jewish immigrants in the clothing industry in the united states, south america, and australia. one interesting case of overrepresentation, the wall street journal reported in 1995 that more than 4/5 of all donut shops in california were owned i people of cambodian origin. ownership of these small businesses are a mobility ladder for cambodian americans to enter the middle class. it also means that can -- cambodian americans are a relatively small proportion. of ethnica policy gender proportional is him remain consistent with a free society? it cannot. the diversity project. it means coercive diversity. there is repressive tolerance. as the term isty
currently used is not compatible with a free society. professor donald horwitz to claire to "it remains problematic whether any of the most heavy-handed preferential policies operating in a command economy can move a society to such a state. triad,rd leg of the critical theory. critical theory tells us that western societies are divided between two basic groups. the privileged and the marginalized. the dominant and the subordinate. the marginalized groups include racial, ethnic minorities and women. how is exercised by privileged group through force and through ideological hegemony. the key concept for critical theorists is systemic refresh and -- systemic repression.
the system is the problem. let us look quickly at the work of one particularly influential critical theorist. catherine mackinnon. from the university of michigan, and is a law professor. the role of law and the rule of man are one thing, indivisible because state how were embodied in law exists through society as a male power. male power is systemic, coercive, legitimized. it is the regime. that rape isares not an isolated event or a moral transgression or an individual interchange gone wrong but an act of terrorism and torture within the systemic concept. her father was a judge on the d.c. court of appeals for over 20 years. she argues that sexual harassment is not an individual
issue but an issue of group power exercised by the dumb -- dominant group over the subordinate group. her legal theories are in direct conflict with almost any understanding of liberal democratic jurisprudence since she believes the entire democratic system as oppressive. but her writings have proven to be influential. spoke ofup in court her theories as the leases for interpretation of sexual harassment law in the landmark case from 1996. in 1994, conference -- congress passed the violence against women act. the narrative of critical theory. that women are being attacked because they are members of a subordinate group and the attacks are not individual crimes. another leading feminist of those days who was influential,
carol 1980's and 1990's, gilligan. her core argument is that patriarchal social order and norms and western thinking are the main obstacles to educational opportunities for american girls. again, the american liberal democratic system is the problem. the concept of white privilege goes back for decades. at a freshman orientation session at the university of nebraska in the 1990's, they produced a film funded by the board of education to train ." dents entitled "skin deep which explains the meaning of internalized oppression and white privilege. it is explained in the film that a member of the dominant group who rejects his or her unmerited privilege and becomes an advocate for the subordinate group becomes an ally, a much sought-after position on campuses today. the trinity of identity politics -- multiculturalism, coercive
diversity and critical theory are saying that the american way of life is oppressive and american constitutional liberal democracy is illegitimate. if traditional liberalism, small l has an emphasis on individual rights and opportunities, and identity politics is a thorough rejection of liberalism. it is quintessential ill liberalism. mica asked for solutions. hard to do. all it can think of is that we need to take identity politics as a direct threat to constitutional democracy. opposing the concepts, assumptions wherever they appear in the political world and the a pot -- and the academies, the schools. when choosing a primary political identity, our american national identity will do just fine. therefore, we should remember the admonition of george washington in his first -- in his farewell address.
"citizens by birth or choice of a common country, that country has a right to your affections. the name american which belongs to you in your national capacity must always exult the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation derived from local discrimination or go in 21st-century terms, more than any appellation derived from race, ethnicity, gender, or partisan affiliations. [applause] >> thank you very much. andse pardon my tardiness in formality. i will resist the temptation to ofale you of comments
ineptitude regarding my seven hours at o'hare this afternoon. i will stick with identity politics. i will make three large points. facing haves we are been a long time in the making. second, unsurprisingly overlapping some of what john affinityis a kind of that a very important difference between the postmodernism that dominated our universities for almost 30 years from the mid-1980's and the identity politics that is i that that is dominant today. and third, what we can do inside the universities is very limited but that does not mean there is nothing to do. first, a remark about norms. about thest -- since summer of 2015, we have been hearing that norms are under threat in the united states anduse of the utterances
actions of donald trump. think the actions and utterances of donald trump should be inspected very carefully. overturning or veryminign of norms is little compared to what has been taking place in our universities for now going on about 80 years. it seems to me identity politics represents the latest, most recent of these assaults. what is identity politics? i had a few propositions to which john -- i add a few propositions to what john has already ably said. it's about group identity, usually the most relevant groups are race, class, and gender.
individual rights come second. group -- group rights come first, and group rights are distributed on the basis of the discrimination or oh pression that the group -- or oppression that the group to which you belong has suffered. identity politics teaches people to prize their victimhood, to see victimhood as a virtue, to see victimhood actually as resulting in greater moral status, as meaning that you are deserving of greater political power. identity politics also teaches that if you belong to a prescribed victim category, then -- not only you criticism, but not accepting your opinions amounts to a form and anence against you
expression of racism, hatred, and bigotry, even we are sometimes told an invalidation of your humanity. as i indicated at the beginning, aree ideas, which, indeed, in conflict with the basic foundations of liberal democracy presuppose individual rights distributed equally to all. these misguided doctrines that are now being promulgated by the university have been part and parcel of an anti-liberal and anti-democratic doctrine that has been disseminated for a long time. one coudl te -- could tell a history. i will be brief. we have documentation going back as far as the early 19-50's. -- early 1950's.
there was a book about how the curriculum at yell was promulgating these ideas -- at yale was promulgating these ideas. already by the late-1960's, the public interest devotes an entire issue in the fall of 1968 to unrest in the university. they criticize the apparent willingness of faculty and administration to transform the curriculum into a vehicle for advancing a progressive agenda. in the 1970's, those undergraduate students go to graduate school in the humanities and the social sciences, and many of them bring the idea that scholarship and teaching should be seen as politics by other means. late-1980's,, ellen bloom publishes "the closing of the american mind," criticizes what she regards as a kind of soft, thoughtless relativism that has become the orthodoxy of the day.
she believes this orthodoxy impairs students' abilities to understand the civilization of which they are apart. she advocates a return to the study of the great books. 20 years ago, in 1998, many students think that the assault on due process and free speech began in 2015 at yale in a debate over halloween costumes, but 20 years ago, two published a book called "the shadow university," which documents an assault on free speech, an undermining of due process that had been underway all through the 1990's, part of it john legitimated by the work of catherine mckinnon, which had become very popular in the law schools. "fire," theyed hoped would be out of business in 10 years.
unfortunately, they find themselves in a growth industry. they are bigger and busier than ever. now, sometimes, postmodernism and identity politics are conflated. they should be distinguished, even if they are related. postmodernism, which dominated through the 1980's, the 1990's, part of the 2000's? truthdernism taught that is a fiction, reality is socially constructed. it proclaimed the death of grand narratives. that meant there was no overarching account of history of western civilization, of america. it wasn't invented. course, the professors who promulgated these doctrines to credulous students didn't appreciate the incoherence of treating these precepts as absolute and incontrovertible. identity politics, though, which
the fore may be in the last decade, although it has been building, i agree with john, for a long time, is quite thedifferent. it replaces those modernism's dogmatic relativism -- postmodernism's dogmatic relativism with dogmatic dogmatism. identity politics says we know exactly what happened. we know how the past unfolded. racism, endless tale of classism, sexism. we know who the oppressors are. we know who the oppressed are. issent from our narrative is an act of violence, an expression of racism and hatred. this doctrine is very common on campuses today. even though a dogmatic dogmatism has replaced a dogmatic relativism, the threat to
liberal democracy, it seems to me, remains the same. both the postmodernism that dominated from the 1980's, this identity politics dominant today, regard free speech, due process, the very idea of limited government, which gets in the way of doing good with government, as fraud perpetrated by the strong to subjugate the week. -- weak. so, what needs to be done? short answer, restore liberal education. not going to happen anytime soon within our universities. why? within our universities, most people think -- most professors and most administrators think nothing particularly is wrong. they are not interested in self criticism, let alone external accountability. inherentlykely, any
educationally appropriate practice such as a core curriculum, these days, is likely to be hijacked by illiberal lens within the university. what do i suggest? i suggest more energy, more resources divorce -- devoted outside the academy before students arrive at college, homeschooling, charter schools. i would like to see even more in the way of the programs now byng run, often funded conservative philanthropists or sponsored by conservative foundations to remote the study of -- promote the study of liberal education outside the university's. -- universities. i think this is extremely important, not least because we want to be able to evaluate to say our current president or any president -- it would be extremely useful to have a sound appreciation of the principles of liberal democracy
and american constitutional government, and that's what liberal education ought to be providing us. thank you. [applause] >> michael? michael: thank you. thank you to hoover and heritage for the invitation. my predecessors have spoken about the intellectual roots of identity politics. i'm going to talk about demographic factors involved, which make it likely that you're going to have identity politics of the nationalist and populist variety, as well as multiculturalist, for some time to come in the western world. thesef you may have seen very interesting computer visualizations of voting in the united states, where the info
graphic imagines that democratic voting areas are islands in an o cean. you see this archipelago of democratic cities, college towns, in this ocean. the reverse of that, if you've ever seen this, is red america, republican america. it is this continental landmass with a bunch of lakes. it is kind of like minnesota. lakes where the democratic cities and counties have vanished. here, a greatel analyst of this. "to me if i'm mistaken, but you see -- he can correct me if i'm mistaken, but you see a convergence between western europe and the united states, in what used to be regional differences. in america, we've always been a north-south division, up until the 1970's and 1980's. it is now being replaced by what i think of as the big cities and ex-urbia.
it's no longer suburbia. it's not the countryside. it always amuses me when i read journalists in new york and washington talking about the cities versus the country, as if it were horses, country mice and the city mice. if the land of outback steakhouse and subdivisions and highways and so on, low density america and europe and high density america and europe. i think we need to grasp this, because the answer to the question, are western societies, not just united states, but western societies in general, are they mosaics or melting pots? the correct answer is yes. yes. it depends on which of these zones you are in. .o, let's begin with cities in the united states, 12.5% of the population is foreign-born. in los angeles, it is 39.7%.
in new york city, it is 37%. in the five biggest cities in the united states, 48% speak a language other than english at home. inhabitantsof the of los angeles a majority. in california, texas, nevada, new jersey, new york, and florida, 44% of public school students speak a language other than english at home. and those non-english speakers are divided among various populations. the largest is latino, but increasingly there are various asian american immigrant groups. america,at is half of almost half of america, that is a deeply multicultural society. this is not new. york,ars ago, boston, new big industrial cities, with
european immigrants, you had little italy and little germany and little poland. don't let anybody tell you there was no identity politics before you had left wing intellectuals. right? people voted their ethnic bloc. there was ethnic bloc voting. if you have a city that's made up largely of foreign diasporas of immigrants and their first iteration children -- a lot of it is chain migration. they transport themselves. now it is also vienna, from london and paris. it is not just western hemispheres anymore. you are going to have a kind of olitics. multicultural p the leaders of these immigrant subcultures, many of the voters don't speak the language. maybe german and austrian. maybe english in britain.
they are going to take their cues from their ethnic neighbors and vote for this party or that party. i think there is a structural fact there, which is going to defeat efforts to change university curricula and public policy. it is just the nature of things. if these really were city states, if san francisco did secede from the united states, and i have san francisco friends who want to, then it would be a multinational city state. it would be like singapore. that's just baked into it. ok, let's look at ex-urbia. let's look at this realm in britain outside of london. in france outside of paris metro. other big metros in the united states, between the big cities and the college towns. it is not the case that this is an ancient, non-varying white tribe by any means.
it is becoming more and more diverse over time. sometimes immigrants themselves -- they move, assimilate. we know from studies of ethnic attrition from the university of assimilatelatinos at more or less the same rate that the germans, the irish, the italians did in the past. by the fourth generation, people who have one mexican grandparent cannot say they are latino in the way one who has a german grandparent can say they are german. in working-class dominated suburbia -- ex-urbia. in small towns and world areas -- rural areas. the thought i want to leave you with today is that all ideologies, all ideas have an address, a constituency, a
popular base. -- in the case of multiculturalism, particularly this hard-edged multiculturalism, i don't believe that unless these categories,, which are sort of artificial -- it is just a brief digression. it was the office of management and budget in 1977 that invented the system we have, where their assignment was to come up with a number of official races between three and 10. there was just too much stuff. that's where we get non-hispanic whites, asian and pacific islander, which is kind of an absurd category. i found out last night researching this that it was in 1909 that congress hastily passed a law saying that jews and armenians are white for purposes of white supremacy in those days. syrians and arabs were not, and neither were south asian indians.
they could not marry white people, and so on. but absent some social reality -- in this case, it is immigration driven. real diversity in these big cities on both sides of the atlantic -- i think, over time there would be incentive to identify yourself as this category or that court -- category depending on one of your grandparents. but over time, the melting pot is working. so, why am i pessimistic about that happening? because of democracy. again, the native fertility rate in western societies is below replacement. i'm in favor of it. we need to have replacement immigration of some kind in order to have -- prevent the population from going into a death spiral. the east asian societies have avoided having significant
immigration to date with not terrible impacts, but i think orn your birth rate is 1.4% 1.7%, and it takes 2.1% to maintain a population, and you are losing 1/4 or 1/2 of your population every generation, at some point there is a crisis there. i don't see the birth rates in the developed countries rising rapidly, so i think there will be continued pressure, which will succeed, for migration. but what that does is, it constantly replenishes the demographic political base for multiculturalism, which is a social reality in cities that are gateways for immigration. so, even if you got rid of all of the particular ideologies and studies programs and so on, you're still going to have these quite different communities in
these big cities. you are going to have that kind of brokered politics in bloc voting. we had this 100 years ago in the united states, but it was european immigrant groups. we are seeing the same thing now, on both sides of the atlantic. so, just one final thought, there are identity politics in the majority as well. i was two years old when my aunt was being arrested with her african-american friends in austin, texas, for dining together. old -- no, iars was three years old when it became legal for african-americans to vote in my part of the country. i was five years old when african-americans were allowed to marry white people. it was 1965 that our racist white supremacist immigration
system, which went back to the founding fathers, who said in 1789, "only free white persons can become naturalized citizens of the united states." it was in 1965, when i was a toddler, that we got rid of this. i urge you to bear this in mind. we are half a century, less time than i have been alive, away from american identity politics being white, christian identity politics, reinforced by law. and it didn't just vanish overnight in 1965. so, one can reject some of the more hard-edged versions of multiculturalism, but, at the same time, i don't think we should simply say that it's easy to create a post-white supremacist identity, without making some changes in the way we think about america. in which, up until i was a
little kid, to be an american was to be a white christian, if not a white protestant. thank you. [applause] >> so far, every speaker has stayed within 10 minutes, which is great. heather? heather: thank you so much. i want to express my extreme gratitude to be on this panel and for heritage and hoover to have invited me. i'm going to start with the solution. onch is that we need to take the oppression narrative. unless this idea is rebutted that every difference in american society today is the result, by definition, of discrimination and that, as coates says, it is the very essence of america to destroy the black body, there is going to be no end to identity
politics. it is that core idea that is driving this. it is complete we for bid in to talk about differences in skills, interests, aptitudes -- completely for bid and -- compl aboutforbidden to talk differences in skills, interests, aptitudes. the only allowable explanation is discrimination. are worried us who about the consequences of these identity politics have to screw up the courage to start talking about another explanation for disparities, which is behavioral differences and cultural differences and different interests and aptitudes. now, where do we start?
well, the best place to start is the american campus, because there is no place that is more insane, that is more in the grip of a mass hysteria, than the college campus. there is an ecstatic search for martyrdom and for victimhood that has become an absolutely ruthless crawl of -- up the totem pole of victim beatitude. currently the top victim dog is the trans identity, but, believe me, that is not going to last long. anybody who can guess the next category will be the farthest thinker among us, but, believe me, it is coming. so, put your thinking caps on now. students actually believe -- get this -- that, to be on an american campus today, is to be the subject of relenting threat,
lethal threat to their existence. this, of course, if you are in one of the metastasizing categories of beatific victimhood. primarily, of course, females, students of color, and the 116 now gender categories. are literally at risk of their lives. racism isircumambient so great that they should be exempt from such ordinary academic expectations as going to class. minority students at brown occupied the president's office and complained that they were still expected to go to class, because they were working so hard at, quote, "staying alive at brown." now, does a college president ever say, grow up?
learn the difference between a real problem and an imaginary problem. micro-aggressions are imaginary problems. no, as we know, starting with the 1960's, presidents capitulate, kowtow, and grovel. of course, the growing diversity bureaucracy encourages this. there is a mutual codependency between self engrossed delusional students who act out psychodrama's of oppression audience appreciative of equity, diversity, and inclusion, who use the student'' breakdown to expand their dominions. nevertheless, it is something t hat can be taken on. because it is empirically provable that campuses, at
least american campuses, we can prove ar enot place -- are not places of discrimination. there is not a single faculty hiring search that isn't one desperate effort to find qualified females and underrepresented minorities who have not already been snatched up by better endowed campuses. there is not a single school or professional school in the country that is not employing vast and extraordinarily destructive racial preferences to admit some critical mass of underrepresented minorities, putting those students at an extraordinary competitive disadvantage. that disadvantage, which has been called mismatch, in a book that should be required reading, is also what is driving the delusion, because students who
are artificially catapulted into an academic environment for which they are not prepared -- and this is not limited to race. it would apply to gender. if i was admitted to m.i.t. with a 650 on my math sat and all my peers had been admitted on merit rather than gonads had 800 on their math sat,. i would flounder i would not be able to keep up in freshman calculus. i would have two options. i could say i was admitted to a school which i was not academically prepared for, or i can say i live in a patriarchal rape culture environment that is making me struggle and causing me emotional trauma. and guess which route most students choose? they choose the victim ologies rout -- victimology route. racial preference is another major driver of identity politics, and unless we start admitting students based on
academic merit -- nobody is staying -- saying minority students shouldn't go to college. . they should sibley go to a college for which they are prepared, and they will succeed -- they should simply go to a college for which they are academically prepared, and they will succeed. they leave stem majors at a no normatively -- at prepared, andy will succeed -- they should simply an enormously high rate, because they are put in schools for which they are not qualified. we can take on the victim ideology in college campuses because it is so demonstrably false. the interesting test case right now is where the asian identity goes. it's a very perverse thing. there's the narrative out there that we saw with the jong episode at "the new york times," this asian who was hired to run the editorial board pages, who had a whole history of tweets that were anti-white.
people got upset about this. jong was simply a boring product of the american academy. anybody who was surprised by her has not been paying attention. but there is a divide in asians now between those who support meritocracy and colorblindness. we see them in the asians supporting the law students against harvard, possibly other places, and that understand that new york city, which is trying to close down its merit-based, competitive high schools, and impose racial quotas on those schools -- there is a large chinese contingent that is trying to fight that. nevertheless, you can go to any american campus today and find asian students choosing to identify as students of color, rather than, say, white.
and the irony there is that the administration doesn't regard as ians as people of color. it reads them as white, because loweeps an artificially threshold on the admission of asians, because it doesn't get them the diversity points. the fact that a fair amount of asians choose to embrace the oppositional person of color mindset shows how powerful and attractive identity politics is to the elites. it is the way you gain status. so, just quickly, i just want to stress the urgency of this battle. it is obviously coming very fast into the corporate world. people who, like michael, who had a persuasive thesis that
hard america was going to be the final line, where the soft america was going to end, and people were going to have to face reality, and we were going to return to meritocracy -- a plausible thesis, but i think one, sadly, that is not necessarily, at this moment at least, being born out -- br orne out.when you have google firing engineers not because they were incompetent, but because he dared to question the feminist orthodoxy that reigns not just that google, but at every tech company. this is the key idea. the only allowable explanation for the lack of gender parity at google and facebook and youtube and microsoft -- the only allowable explanation is implicit bias and sexism. we are not allowed to say that males and females have different career aptitudes and
preferences. we are certainly not allowed to say what larry summers got fired from harvard for saying, which is that, at the tail end of high-end math ability, the .01 percent of cutting-edge math skills, males outnumber females 2.5 to 1. the corporate world is being transformed. the stem fields are under enormous pressure. to hire by gender and to a lesser extent by race. gender is the big story there. we are seeing it in the political realm with the gender studies 101 coming to the supreme court hearings, with the againsts' mantra used brett kavanaugh, the whole due process problem we have been hearing about. this is something we need to talk about now. the main driver is race, despite the gender -- second-place,st
but the main driver of all of this is the lingering racial disparities and we both need to close them and be honest about what's driving them. i would say family breakdown is the biggest driver and other behavioral disparities and culture. those need to be closed,, because, i fnot, -- if not, the oppression narrative will be with us to our enormous misfortune. thank you for your attention. [applause] >> now batting cleanup is andrew sullivan. andrew: thank you, heather. i wish you would be able to express how you really feel. [laughter] >> [inaudible] andrew: it's really helpful. it is refreshing.
in liberale embedded institutions, you are not at a think tank, or if you are embedded in liberal media or mainstream media at this point, just to be in a room where someone says those things is kind of, like, refreshing. i just want to add a few points to what she said, all of which has been excellent, as you've heard, in outlining the general threat to liberal democracy, a fundamental threat to liberal democracy and liberalism in general from this ideology. ask -- is to this happened before. we went through a nightmare like this in the 1990's. but it is different now. i'm interested in why it is different now.
back then, it was an interesting way to debate what's going on in the world. in other words, some of this stuff was immediately challenged, debated, talked theugh, even though campuses, generally speaking, supported it, it hadn't completely taken over all teaching of humanities the way it currently has. what has rendered it so much more intense now? why has an entire generation of the elite succumbed to it? it is staggering how people under the age of 30 buy all of this, have never even regarded it as questionable. routineome completely to believe these things. a couple things. first, the internet. we have --
and also parenting. we have a new generation of kids who were never allowed to risk anything, who were monitored their entire lives, who were told that safety was the most important thing in their lives, and who were consumed with screens and lacking social interaction and negotiating interpersonal conflict, as one does, in real life. they're a very fragile generation. when they showed up after the helicopter parenting, to co llege, their main requirement was to be safe. and anything that made them feel unsafe was something that they responded to very negatively, something their parents would never expose them to. so, there was that psychological response, as well as a lack of as human beings.
secondly, social media does two things. one, it prioritizes the quick retort to a quick blurted out half thought. it is so easy -- so much easier to say, well, you're a white man. i don't have to deal with the actual details of the argument. you argue the identity, not the argument. that feels perfectly great. if you have this overarching ideology that allows you to say, see, i rebutted it. your argument makes no sense because of your race and gender or whatever. secondly, there is an element of pleasure, almost moral pleasure, in calling out evil, when you see it, especially when you do it to another individual. this call-out culture, this
moral shaming, is also deep within human nature, of course. but online interaction disinhibited it, allowed us increasingly to respond to public debate in terms entirely of identity, rather than idea. i can honestly say -- i try not to look at what people say about me on twitter. almost every single argument is about whether i'm white, whether rsvwale, whether i'm lgbtq xyza or not. don't get me started on lgbt. and also, of course, social media facilitates your willingness not just a shame others, but to praise yourself. what we call virtue signaling. feeding offentially
the moral capital of the civil rights movement. feeding off the moral capital that argued that every group should have equal access. to conflate that with, if there is not absolute equality of outcomes, therefore three is -- there is evil. the second thing that is new and different is this is far beyond campus. mostis now integral to blue state, corporate settings. in other words, what's actually a rather is a tarik -- esoteric ,oncept out of postmodernists ubiquitouslyd within the hiring and firing and advancement process and policies of most big companies. not in any way
controversial not to have quota targets for representation in your company. not init is far more outrageouu don't have those things. you can go to the "new york times" and see how successful they have been at recruiting different diversity groups. this is into corporate culture in a way it was not in the 1990's. thirdly, it has completely taken over the media. the liberal media surrendered, almost immediately, to leftist media. and there are almost on mainstream publications in which in the opinion realm, i'm not talking about news necessarily, in which dissent from this is really allowed. fromnly people dissenting it are people my generation or above who have already been able to establish themselves outside of these structures. and we're hanging on by our
fingernails. because when you write something every day, you know that it could be the last line you write. you used to be an editor of magazine and know you could publish something and maybe be highly controversial. you would get a lot of criticism . i'm talking from experience, of course. jobyou would hang in the and publish often people liked the next week. now, boom, bgone. so, that's another thing that has fed this more generally into the culture, saving into general culture, not just campus culture. the third reason friday the fortics -- third reason identity politics is conservatism. it's the adoption by the republican party of white identity politics and the elevation of this horrible, hideous, racist human being to by presidency, supported
such a large number, in fact the entirety of the republic party, bar a handful of people. when your presidency is actively and clearly demonstrating hatred and hostility towards members of ethnic minorities, it is not surprising that that is then -- that gives an exuse to everybody -- an excuse to everybody on the far left, see, everything we said about conservatives is true. when the president of the united states cannot does about support -- cannot disavow support from the far right and when he engages in unbelievable constant race baiting, and when the republican party embraces it, it means that all of us on the outside who are trying to defend liberal values have that thrown in our faces. you can't criticize identity politics on the left without seeing how it has been
emboldened, legitimized, and empowered by the adoption of identity politics on the right. how do we solve it? very quickly. three ideas. one is simply confront it daily, all the time. don't be intimidated. they want to intimidate you. i'm intimidated every day. i write a column which i know, because i've lived the last two years, renders myself, my own employment extremely precarious. the things people are not writing -- things people are afraid to say in media are legion. second, push identity even further. i like the idea of intersection ality. we are a bunch of different identities competing. let's keep adding on the identities. i'm gay. ok. i'm british. i'm also american.
i grew up in a small town. i live in a big city. i'm a catholic. park."watching "south they are all parts of my identity that i can add to the picture until it is fully complex. when you do that for every single person, you find everybody's intersection ality is unique and you end up with individualism. thirdly and lastly, we need to have a positive vision of diversity. it is really hard in this kind of dynamic to respond and to ask the question -- to respond to the question about inequality by saying, well, you are not really oppressed. that's what heather was really saying. the difficulty is, how do you say that to a person of color who says, well, yes, i am. i'm not asking. i'm just saying, that's a dilemma. my view is you have to celebrate the success of minority groups, to champion members of minority
groups and women who are succeeding and flourishing in america, to retell the story of progress of the different identity groups in america, to see how, for example, in my own experience, in terms of oppression with homosexuality, is how this country is incredibly open to listen fairly to arguments made sensibly nand not an intolerant country. instead of being put in that position constantly, defensively, we should talk about the successes that have occurred. sometimes i wonder whether this stuff is in fact a function of having succeeded. because you're terrified you are going to lose the struggles you live with, and you have nothing to do with your life. no more cause to champion. it seems weird to me that we are in a most interior -- intense pe riod in the notion of patriarchy, at a time when women are now 54% of college graduates, in which women are
kicking ass all over society. instead of celebrating that, we're talking about the constant oppression of the patriarchy. we can turn it around. we can be positive, not negative. thank you. [applause] thank you, andrew. thanks, all of you. i promised i was going to deliver diversity. i think i have. a diversity of views. we have 20, 20 minutes for questions. how many people want to ask a question? can you raise your hands, so i can get a sense? mike and i have agreed to forego the chair and go straight to you, unless members of the panel want to quibble with one another over anything. anybody want to say anything? raise your hand. andrew: -i agree with-- heather: i agree with most of
what andrew said, but i don't think the psychological snowflake over parenting explanation, which is one that has been put forward by others, who i respect in or mislead -- respect enormously -- that is the thesis of their book. i don't think that's fully accurate for several reasons, as john pointed out. the rise of identity politics and victim identity and assaults on due process began in the 1990's, if not before that, 1980's. but also, it doesn't match up demographically. brothers of maudlin, self-pitying female co-eds have the same parents and yet white demandingall are not their own unique safe spaces.
they may find through the magic of intersectionality some other way to claw their way out of the oppressor category into the oppressed, which is where everybody wants to be. but, generally, there have been helicopter parents, and they are not demanding safe spaces. and also, the underrepresented minorities, i think, sociological work shows the problem there is not over parenting, for a lot of black and hispanic kids. obviously, universities are trying to select the most affluent. they don't give a damn about any kind of socioeconomic disparities or preferences for that. but nevertheless, i think of the issue as less a psychological problem of the overparented child and more an ideological problem, which is the narrative
that america is endemically oppressive and racist. >> andrew? andrew: my point was simply that was one factor intensifying what already existed. it didn't create it. for some people, it made the essential question of safety, emotional safety part of their core needs. that's all. just one part. peter: one quick observation about michael lind's excellent point about the social reality that gives rise to multiculturalism and political society. there seems to me a kind of asymmetry between the multicultural reality that michael described and what we are seeing in the universie inte principles of liberal democracy. it's a form of interest group politics, which is not only, not oppose, but elaborated in the sense of -- whereas the kind of identity
politics described by andrew, heather, john, and myself, actually does describe an ideology that is affirmatively opposed to the principles of liberal democracy as we have known them. >> can i answer briefly? i don't disagree with that. i would push back. i think there is an ideology among the elite, the nativeborn white elite in europe and the u.s. and it identifies liberal democracy -- they think they are liberal democrats. this goes back to the 1950's and all of this. as andrew correctly pointed out, west american and thepe is two things -- holocaust and american racism. also, australian.
there has been this 50 years in which the working class in particular, but the majority's in the united states, australia, canada, britain, france, thisny, are see n as slumbering proto-fascist mass, so every defense of liberal democracy has been defending minorities against these people who could become nazis at any minute. i think in the view of these mainstream elites, they really believe, right? that at any moment, these blue-collar workers are going to turn into stormtroopers an round everybody upd. this is a sincere belief, i think in the college-educated class. in a way, they think they have to defend liberal democracy against democracy against majoritarianism. it is counter majoritarian. >> just one quick point. i think the ethnic politics of
the early 20th century -- it was celebratory. these were not people who had a beef with america. america. celebrating >> ok. so, now, over here? please identify yourselves. please ask a brief question. many people want to ask questions. >> i'm hans with the heritage foundation. maybe to heather. one of the arguments i don't see made, and i wonder whether you agree with this, is that the very argument of diversity, which administrators use to justify what they are doing, isn't it the worst form of racism? because what they are saying is your viewpoint, your ideas, your opinions depends on your race. isn't that the worst kind of racism? i don't see that argument made very often. heather: you know who makes it is the beneficiaries of preferences.
there is a frequent complaint on college campuses that one hears from black students, which is that, during the discussion of the civil rights era, everybody turns and looks at us for our opinion. and you know, this is insulting. rightly so, it is. and yet, you don't get to have it both ways. the argument for why you are here is because we assume, because you are black, you have a predictably different view of these matters than anybody in a different racial group, so it is absolutely typecasting. sadly, though, the response on the part of people who feel a little bit offended by being typecast, give us your view, they don't then say, treat us as
individuals, the students that are complaining about that are, on the same token, demanding that the preference regime continues. by now, it has tried to say in many conservatives -- and many conservatives have said it, there are many different ways to conceptualize diversity than race and gender. it is the least interesting part of somebody, and yet intersectionality -- what ever happened -- ssthink john mentioned put cla into the trilogy of identity. that is really just lip service, because they don't really care about class. we used to categorize people based on capital and workers in the proletariat. that has all gone to the wayside now. it is the fun of the n avel-gazing narcissistic division of the multiple gender
identities tha gets all the attentiont, but there are so many other ways to think about the self, which is what one loves, what one's passions are, whether it is music or art, are utterly the least important aspects of somebody's self in my view,. are>> ok. next, this lady right here, then we will go in the back. >> thank you very much. i'm darlene jackson, esquire. also, acting chairwoman of the national black republic council. --o ceo and founder of i would like to touch on mr. lind's comments. >> can you speak up a little bit? >> i would like to speak about mr. lind's comments about
fertility. there was also a discussion about the intellectual part of identity politics. academics,rmation of media, and hollywood, which includes music and theater, all , theo this umbrella rainbow coalition, into politics. the key determining factor of all of that is fertility. what is fertility? s, one in newe son york, one in atlanta, one in l .a., i walk away, each of those sons brings in a -- if i have three girls, same thing, new york, l.a., atlanta, 30 days later, i might get one.
go to africa. see all those boys. go to china. see all those girls. in china, -- >> do you have a question. >> i'm sorry. would you agree with me that if you look into the real key nucleus of fertility, it will explain everything about gender politics? that?hael, d want to take -- do you want to take that? michael: the point i was making is the broader, someone obvious one, that if you want to have constant population in industrialized societies and your natives don't replace themselves, you need at least for placement immigration. i just wanted to make the point population,lacement even in the absence of ideological multiculturalism, there are going to be conflicts and backlash.
there is going to be some kind of ethnic politics. it can be celebratory. remember, the last episode of ethnic politics we had led to the 1924 immigration restriction act and shut down immigration for half a century in the united states because of backlash. i think a lot of the conflict, even in particularly western european societies, where, unlike the united states, there were not -- they were not always multiracial, multiethnic -- it's just there's going to be tension. >> it's a staggering fact, to me, at least that london now has a 37% populatoin that was not born -- population that was not born in britain. soon, half the capital will have no one who was born in the united kingdom. that's in two generations. but it is exactly at these
demographic pressure points that the importance of liberal individualism becomes ever more important, because the possibility of group conflict -- american politics becoming a race war -- it is real or now, especially when people have this -- you are at a moment exactly when these things buried deepen us come to the surface -- deep in us come to the surface, and it is vital to push back. it is at its most dangerous right now, and the only solution is to treat people individually. one tiny point. i think it is also important for people not to a knowledge that racism does exist. i think it's important not to construct alternatives in which everybody lives without any difficulties at all. i think that's foolish and wrong.
it comes off as condescending and contemptuous. but the answer is six, not -- in other words, validityas this has no whatsoever, that produced is not exist is not believable and it is not credible and it is not working and not dealing with reality. >> let me go back to the audience. josh mitchell. i look around the room and i see a number of us are old deaf to remember in time when we did not use the term identity. this is something relatively recent. used to say i am american or i am a man.
that my identity is american and my identity ismaaiyl -- is male. we use identity synonymous with kind. identity is different than time. it is a real -- than kind. it is a relationship with transgression and innocence. if we don't get to that piece of identity, we will completely miss what is going on. identity politics is the specification of a relationship between an innocent recommended transgressor. how is it that that really religious idea has emerged into our culture? one question i will post to the following -- might it be the collapse of the mainline protestant churches, in which one had a vernacular of sin and transgression, a way to resolve it -- martin luther king did the same thing the civil rights
speeches -- once that collapses, does this move into the domain of politics and you have transgression and innocence but no way to atone for it? and that is the crisis of identity politics. >> is there somebody that you would like to answer that question? >> anyone on the panel. >> i think that is a brilliant ascription of where we are. that's really what i have to say. the question deeper done is really about nature. the other thing that identity suggests is choice. people want to believe is greater and greater liberty for themselves, greater autonomy. it's really about wanting to be from -- free from nature itself, which is a very nietzsche and idea -- nietzschean idea.
and we are behaving in that way in which everything, every aspect of being human is now a choice, a piece of clothing you put on. and most radically now with actual sex and gender, in which something becomes completely other. but i also believe with the religious aspect here. christianity was a critical force -- is critical behind liberalism itself -- but it is a critical move in civilization that we were neither male or female, but one and everyone is the same and equal under god. when you take christianity out of a culture entirely, where does the individual dignity come in? then you see group identities and group dignity coming in. i think it is part of the decline of christianity or rather the distortion, the collapse of christianity,
especially so much is about identity politics and about religion. >> we have two questions quickly, then we will go to the foyer and you will be able to approach the speakers. >> very quickly. i understand what it means to be victim.t i am a and i'm not a victim and i choose to be a victor and have an amazing life. that said, i am wrestling with two things that i would like to get your feedback on. are you really of pressed or are you just frustrated because -- are you really oppressed or are you just frustrated because equality has not really played out. if the playing level is really level as it was for me educationally and in the work ,or it -- and in the workforce
or is it justl because excrement occurs? [laughter] i'm simply an american who loves a good argument. . >> there will never be equal outcomes in a free society. dudessor horwitz at university -- duke university said that it is impossible to have equal outcomes for every racial, ethnic group. it's not the way rules work. it is not the rules ever work. >> heather was nice enough to say that might 2004 book was
wrong. [laughter] >> in a good way. >> you made a strong case. and michael and pointed out that we have had racial identity politics in the past, although we did not like to call it that. la guardia did not say you should vote for me because i'm andtalian jewish protestant so forth and everything. and ran forwas -- congress as both a republican and a socialist. the thought struck me, as i was listening to all of you and making excellent points, is that, in some ways, our answers to learner history better. when people on campus say they are at risk of death, what the hell were southern black people who were trying to register to
vote in the 1950's and the 1960's at risk of? thatther thought i had was we don't understand this distinction. we get a lot of our racial -- our are systems systems on outcomes, being equal each identical group, even like la guardia and some of the letters after lgb was rattling off -- that andrew was rattling off, those came from court , when the law schools course were in a situation where southern whites were oppressing black people with the threat of violence in the background. and the course just said, ok, we will sit down a quota because that is the only way to actually assure that we will get real progress. we haven't needed to do that
really in the last 40 years to get equal treatment of people. thate need to learn history happened and that it was unique and that is not now. >> i don't think we can do good on that. somebody wants to comment? >> i completely agree. we have lost the leverage of stoicism, the ability or willingness to say shrug it off, the brave. if you face an impediment -- i disagree with and are. at least on an american college campus, there is not discrimination. that is a bigotry-free environment. and i won't even play the conservative victim card, because even conservatives are not truly victims there. but we've lost the ability to say, even if you are discriminated against, fight it. you can transcend it by studying. you think somebody has committed
a racial micro-aggression against you, what is that on your chemistry exam? be brave and be courageous and overcome things. we somehow feel inhibited from saying that, but that is exactly what the civil rights heroes of our past did. right, exactly. >> please join me in thanking our -- [applause] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017]
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c-span.org, and on the free c-span radio app. >> c-span's "washington journal," live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up tuesday morning, the family research council's can back well -- ken blackwell. then voice of the experienced, also known as vote founder and executive erector nor sanderson -- director noris henderson. >> this morning, teresa may appeared before parliament for the first time since the european union signed off on her brexit plan.
several members openly expressed opposition to the plan. we will shoot you -- we will show you an hours portion of today's session. i would like to make a statement on the conclusion of our negotiations to leave the european union. brussels, i read should deal with the leaders of the other 27 eu member states. it will ensure our departure on the 29th of march next year. there is a political declaration unambitious future partnership on national interest. it is the right deal for britain because it is for the british people. it takes back control of our borders. it ends the free movement of people