February 28, 2017
Social psychologist Clay Routledge on the tragedy and farce of identity politics:
Identity politics, especially what is going on within the academic left, is strange because it is at odds with much of what we know about inter-group relations. Decades ago, psychological scientists established that dividing people into groups and highlighting group differences leads to in-group bias. It also leads to hostility if the groups perceive themselves as fighting over scarce resources… Experimental research also shows that making people feel like victims, which is common in identity politics and on college campuses, increases feelings of entitlement and reduces pro-social behaviour… The postmodern fields that promote identity politics ignore decades of good research on both what creates conflict and the best ways to reduce it.
Why, it’s almost as if the point of the exercise were to cultivate lots of pretentious guilt and exploitable animosity.
Jack F Mourouzis interviews Christina Hoff Sommers:
For activists committed to the doctrine of intersectionality, universities have to be seen as racist, sexist, violent institutions. The theory demands it. In fact, our institutions of higher learning are among the least bigoted or violent places on Earth. To maintain the theory, activists stretch the meanings of words beyond comprehension. When I politely challenged fainting-couch feminism at Oberlin and Georgetown, protestors accused me of “violence.” According to diversity officials at Berkeley and UCLA, anyone who suggests that “men and women have equal opportunities for achievement” or refers to the US as “a land of opportunity” is creating a “hostile” environment and “targeting” marginalised people.
And Roger Kimball on news, fake news and very fake news:
The motor of fake news is not inaccuracy. It’s malice. I had an insight into this important truth a couple weeks back when I was at a swank New York club for an evening event. The establishment in question is overwhelmingly conventional, i.e., leftish, in that smug sort of way that publications like the New Yorker and the New York Times, along with CNN and MSNBC, exude. I ran into an acquaintance, a female journalist I hadn’t seen in years. I knew that her politics were conventional in the above sense, but I had also found her an amusing and lively person. We were chatting when someone she knew from the Times joined in. I then overheard him explain to her that she had to be careful about what she posted on Facebook, Twitter, etc., because anything too explicitly anti-Trump could be used against her when that glorious day came and “they” - the conventional fraternity of groupthink scribblers - finally took down that horrible, despicable man. “We’ve got dozens of people working on it all the time,” he explained, adding that it was only a matter of time before they got the goods on Trump and destroyed him.
At which point, inexplicably, this sprang to mind.
Feel free to share your own links and snippets, on any subject, in the comments.