It’s the key to utopia we’re told. Schools must orchestrate it; fortune 500 companies must manage to it; it’s a predecessor to understanding and tolerance. Since the 60’s we’ve been bludgeoned in the head with this single-word progressive mantra. Diversity. Not diversity of thought, mind you, we are talking strictly about checking the box around racial and gender lines through minority recruiting, quotas, corporate HR training sessions and similar twaddle.
By Professor Liberty Mize, a contributing author of SHTFBlog
This is how you manufacture greatness, we’re told. A perfect world includes everyone living together, embracing and celebrating our differences while benefitting from the unique perspectives of others. If only we could take the time to understand each other we can weave a beautiful multicultural tapestry of culture that will enrich us all. As a sentence in a mission statement or a line in a campaign speech, the sentiment is a wonderful and powerful thing. Much like most liberal ideas however, what makes sense at an intellectual level often fails miserably at the point of execution. We are officially 50 years into full buy-in on the diversity experiment and yet we are more divided today than we’ve ever been. We have race riots in our largest cities, growing anti-Semitism on college campuses and YouTube videos of disenfranchised youth stomping our flag.
The question is why?
There are three key reasons.
1- Celebrating our differences discounts our similarities
If you repeatedly tell someone they are a racial or ethnic group first and American second, they internalize the former and downplay the latter. Tribalism as espoused by multiculturalism separates, it doesn’t bring people together. Consider the analogy of a college rivalry like Auburn/ Alabama. Groups on both sides of this bitter rivalry share traits and affinities of almost every kind. They are geographically and culturally aligned and yet they become sworn enemies when they choose to put all of that aside and place their tribe first. This example may sound silly, but from a cultural perspective it is the same phenomenon as tribalism by race– poor white kids beating up poor black kids and vice versa, all because of a manufactured identity. For hundreds of years America has been a melting pot. The message was that you can hold on to parts of what you were, but you must integrate and become an American. This has been largely replaced by multiculturalism in the name of diversity. In so doing we’ve raised a generation of kids who are something else first and American second. This divides rather than unites us and removes sacrifice for the common good, patriotism and nationalism from the equation. It is a very dangerous thing that you can see playing out in race riots and terrorism.
2- People aren’t stats
Diversity is so focused on labels and stats that it misses the people. Consider the fact that presently we have a black president. The box has been checked. The diversity model would argue that things should be getting better– maybe not great, but a clear step in the right direction. We should be able to begin to put the racial animus behind us and move on solving the problems of race in the US. Surely he’ll help us get to the next chapter… after all he’s black.
Yet by virtually every measure, the two terms of Obama have made things harder on your average black resident of these United States. How can that be, does this not fly in the face of the theory of diversity? The fact remains that while our president may literally be African-American, he shares very little common ground with black America. The issues that face an underclass of largely poor and fatherless urban youth are as foreign to this president as any we’ve had. He didn’t grow up knowing violence and poverty. He’s an elite who attended a $19,000 a year prep school in Hawaii as a kid, only leaving it to embrace the hallowed halls of the ivy league. He’s may have read about poverty in books, but he’s been molded more by academia than the color of his skin.
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He’s the very walking embodiment of an object lesson of why diversity is a sham. Groups don’t matter, people matter. If we are content to check boxes, we are never going to succeed. You can check the black president box and feel good about yourself, but if you are being honest you are leaving the progress box empty.
3- People like to be with people like them and that’s OK
A recent study shed some interesting light on diversity issues. It shows that the most diverse cities in the country also happen to have the most segregated neighborhoods. This speaks volumes. If diversity is such a valuable thing, why does no one seem to want it except the social architects? If people accept equal opportunity, but choose to segregate voluntarily, is that a bad thing? Even liberal bastions where we’ve tried to increase integration have resulted in people sub-dividing and segregating themselves. This tells me that forced diversity for diversity’s sake is yet another failed experiment that seems good at an intellectual level, but is wasting money and resources solving problems people don’t have.
So where does that leave us?
How can we start to expose the fallacy of diversity and unwind decades of bad public policy? First and foremost we need to stop manufacturing “diversity” for its own sake. We should accept that if it truly adds value, it will happen organically. Putting people in buckets and then mixing the bucket up is providing no value. Manufactured diversity doesn’t stop racism, it reinforces it.
Secondly we need to focus on the next generation and stop telling our kids they are anything but American. While it is OK for them to celebrate their roots, it is more important to identify with their country. America is your heritage whether you just arrived from Asia this morning, or your ancestors came over on the Mayflower, adapt, engage and integrate. Have a beer on Cinco de Mayo, but party even harder on the fourth of July.
Finally, we need to focus on coaching up our youth on the American dream. The media has done a great job of undermining it, but it has never been stronger and is available to all of us regardless of economics, race or religion. You know that this is true, so share it. Telling a young black man that he’s a “lost generation” and the “deck is stacked against him” is not only a tremendous disservice, it is factually incorrect.
We can do better and we must do better, and it begins with messaging and continues through personal accountability. That last part cannot be engineered, but with a level playing field and engagement it can be fostered and encouraged. We must ditch the artificial and superficial promise of diversity and get back to what makes America great, opportunity and hard work.
The views, opinions and positions expressed by the author are his alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or positions of SHTFBlog.com
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