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The Democratic Party and its media allies have created a monster. It goes by two names: political correctness and identity politics. Both involve what you can say and what you can believe. While Democrats won’t admit authoring the ever-expanding handbook of acceptable speech, they seem to be the only group left in America which feels free to express their views.
The Cato Institute released a national poll in October 2017 that found an astounding 71 percent of Americans believe political correctness is silencing discussions society needs to have, while 58 percent said they have political views they are afraid to share.
Not surprisingly, the majority (53 percent) of Democrats said they did not feel the need to self-censor, while a super majority of Republicans (73 percent) and independents (58 percent) felt the need to keep some political beliefs to themselves.
So what is causing this phenomenon? The real power behind political correctness comes from identity politics, and progressives have been incorporating it into their agenda for decades.
At its core, identity politics claims oppressive forces such as racism and sexism virtually dominate our political and social institutions. While no society can end bigotry outright, identity politics ignores the reality that America has advanced individual rights and equalities farther than any nation. This is because identity politics acts as an all-or-nothing philosophy.
It claims America’s virtues and laws have harbored these evils rather than opposed them. By design, it attacks the integrity of our institutions with unfounded claims of systemic racism and institutional oppression.
While we may see America as a self-governed free society, supporters of identity politics see a tyranny by the majority.
As such, they put little value in furthering their agenda through persuasion and logic. Instead, the movement advances primarily through groupthink, intimidation, and slander (i.e. political correctness).
While national discourse has been plagued by political correctness, it is merely a symptom – not the virus itself.
It is identity politics that prejudicially boxes individuals into a group identity (white, black, gay, straight, female, male, etc.) where each must wear their group’s history like a scarlet letter, either as oppressor or oppressed. To enforce this, groups are given limits on approved speech.
“Because I am (insert race, gender, etc.), I have no right to say or think (insert opinion) because I’m not (insert other race, gender, or identity group),” said the progressive.
In other words, they believe that individual expression should be restricted by your race, gender, or various identity status, unless to reinforce another group’s talking points. This bigotry is supported by concepts such as cultural appropriation — where different cultures or races are not allowed to adopt things from other cultures.
Just take Buzzfeed’s recent article, “37 Things White People Need To Stop Ruining in 2018,” which include things like mac and cheese, sneakers, protests, the Oscars, and America. Buzzfeed and others label this prepackaged racism as an advanced form of tolerance.
The identity-driven PC agenda needs to be called out for what it really is: a sanctimonious monster, fighting perceived racism with real racism and hatred with more hate. It flies in the face of Martin Luther King Jr.’s Dream for a nation that judges based on character, not race.
Democrats and the media are able to keep identity politics relevant by furthering the notion that racism, sexism, (insert the –ism) lurk around every corner.
Donald Trump’s campaign motto “Make America Great Again” is a great example. To most Americans, the message conveyed hope for a prosperous economy and a renewed national spirit. Democrats branded it as a veiled pledge to reinstate the racial injustices of the past.
If you think Trump’s election has defeated identity politics, think again. Democrats and the media continue to double down on deeply divisive rhetoric, elevating worries of race relations to a record high, according to a recent Gallup poll.
Democrats who speak out against identity agendas are ostracized by the radicals in their party. It has become so deeply interwoven with their party platform that it cannot be stopped, nor does it have the capacity to stop.
As identity politics inevitably creates more and more victim groups, each demanding priority, it will ultimately destroy itself. Until then, the monster has the capacity to do tremendous damage to our nation.
George Orwell famously said, “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they don’t want to hear.” If we allow ourselves to lose our voice, we will lose what it means to be an American. Racism cannot defeat racism. Evil cannot defeat evil. Every American is responsible for his or her actions, not those of their ancestors or identity group.
Here is the best way to combat it: Take action. Spread the word. Attend local school board meetings. Run for county office. Get involved in your community, and don’t be timid in speaking truth because, I can assure you, nothing will change if you don’t speak up.
Josh Wagoner is a co-founder of Tomahawk Strategies, a conservative political consulting firm based in Oklahoma City. Follow Josh on Twitter.