Identity Politics, Marxism, and the Individual

After writing Friday’s critique of a local community roundtable, I’ve had a few days to further develop my thoughts on the ideas presented by the panel.

For the purposes of this article, I’ve keyed into the Marxist rhetoric veiled behind the organizers’ assertions of white supremacy in law enforcement. “Cultural Marxism” is a severely loaded term that has been used to describe the sentiment that I discuss below. I will not use it describe the ideas presented here. I use “Marxism” to describe the panel’s tendency to define their issues with an “Us vs. Them” mentality.

An objective evaluation of the panel’s topic: “Police and Community Trust,” boils down to perspective. Advocates of liberty and decentralization would see society as consisting of billions of individuals interacting and adapting to their own personal circumstances.

In contrast, Marxists see society through the lens of class struggle and conflict. To a Marxist, an individual’s identity is formed based on which class they belong to. Classes are defined based on their relationship to the means of production.

The panel’s Marxist evaluation of police relations is just a proverbial brick in the looming wall of identity politics, which, in of itself, is a troubling development that has overtaken the American political landscape.

In a recent articleLiberty Weekly touched on the role that democracy has played in establishing political polarity in the United States.

While our country is officially a constitutional democratic republic, many of the republican safeguards built into the constitution have gradually been eroded over the years. (Think 17th Amendment, universal suffrage, etc.)

One of the biggest developments in the establishment of identity politics is the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, which, through Supreme Court jurisprudence, subsequently applied the majority of the Bill of Rights to the states. The Bill of Rights was only ever meant to apply to the “General”–or Federal Government.

Over the last 150 years, 14th Amendment jurisprudence has universally imposed policy over all 50 States. By mandating that every citizen in every state must conform to one policy, the Equal Protections Clause has effectively politicized every aspect of American life.

In order to justify this centralized policy, the Left crucifies decentralization and states’ rights as a tool of white supremacy. Far more frequently, however, the states have used their power to fight against racist policies enacted by the Federal Government (think fugitive slave acts). In fact, president of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis denounced northern states’ use of nullification (the main tool of state action against the Federal Government) in his farewell address to congress.

Moreover, with more centralized power, the Federal Government has the ability to do more harm than the states ever could. Once that Legislation is in place, it is more difficult to change at the federal level than at the state.

Identity politics and Marxism are antithetical to personal liberty. Viewing people merely as members of their class, and not as individuals crushes preexisting natural rights and individual liberty and is often used as a tool to argue for asinine ideas such as reparations.

It is heartbreaking that 150 years after the end of the American Civil War, the United States is still recovering from the evils of slavery. While Friday’s panelists would attribute this struggle to institutional white supremacy, I would assert that the divisiveness of their tactics do not further the interests of love, peace, and understanding.

In contrast to Friday’s panel, I would assert that the evils in our society are not caused by institutional white supremacy as much as they are promulgated by the immoral, monopolized use of force.

That is not to say that Friday’s panelists do not have legitimate criticisms to make. Yet, we know that liberty and the free market bring people together more than separating them by class.

Folks of Color definitely deserve the same liberty as the rest of us, but we all need much, much, more of it!

Thank you very much for stopping by Liberty Weekly this Sunday. I look forward to a great (but busy) week ahead!

Tell me what you think!