When people speak out against “identity politics,” as many, typically straight cisgender affluent white men seem to want to do lately, there’s a subtext and a whole lot of missed perspective.
First, the subtext.
When these guys speak out against identity politics, what they’re typically attacking are those fighting for their rights and/or lives against social structures and institutions.
They’re rarely speaking out against the politicians who think we should require funerals for miscarriages or the ones who thinks we have such a problem of voter fraud that laws stopping primarily poor communities of color from voting are a good idea.
No, of course not.
They’re speaking out against Black Lives Matter, the LGBTQ+ community, women fighting for reproductive rights and a fair wage, and other groups whose identity is directly threatened by the current political climate.
The problem is that these people tend to see governance as some abstract, intellectual pursuit, that’s only to be handled as a rational, unbiased structure by the educated and “well bred.”
Now, the perspective problem.
ALL POLITICS IS IDENTITY POLITICS!
Until such a day as race, gender, sexuality, etc, has no play in how people are treated, or how our society is structured, all politics will always be identity politics.
Here’s the crux of the perspective problem, though.
They’re saying that identity politics are bad and have no place in the world. BUT…what they’re really saying is that only other people’s identity politics have no place in the world. Theirs are OK.
When they make these claims, they never say their own hatred of Muslims and love of anti-immigration policies are wrong. They never say THEY are wrong for forming their politics around their own identity and experiences.
It’s always the “others.”
Bear this is mind while the nearly obsolete of our society rant against the people who are catalysts of change. Bear this in mind and let them rant while the rest of us change the world.