Thursday, February 11, 2010

Another Lie our Culture has Embraced

Just like Radical Feminism just may be the worst thing that ever happened to women and family, Diversity (and it's stepchild, Multiculturalism) may just be among the worst things that ever happened to this nation.

The problem is that Diversity is incredibly divisive.

Before I get whipped and beaten and thrown to the dogs, let me explain myself. The problem that people identified and tried to solve with a "new" focus on diversity was (and is) a legitimate problem: intolerance and prejudice. These things divide our nation and make us prone to selfishness, infighting, insular behavior, a gang mentality (even among "adults"). They weaken us as a nation because they eat away at our unity, our cultural wholeness, and our strength. (You know what I'm talking about--there are a thousand epigrams and idiom about this: In Unity there is Strength; United we stand, divided we fall; A house divided against itself.......).

What happened is the solution exacerbated the problem.

Differences, disagreement, varying points of view, and discourse are not innately bad things. They are unavoidable things. In fact, having different viewpoints that lead to discourse is a strengthening thing for a nation because those differences and that discourse (ideally) leads to better solutions to problems--solutions that benefit more people more often.

The problem is we have made embracing and celebrating those differences the goal, and in doing so have discarded what is supposed to be the end result  of those things: a powerful unity where we use our individual strengths and abilities (and our differences) to benefit the whole.

As soon as people mis-defined unity as "sameness", we lost something valuable in our society.

The problem with solving intolerance and prejudice with a focus on diversity is that focusing on how someone is different from me (or you, or us) is not the thing that makes us friends. Friendship is built on commonalities, not on differences, and once we have become friends, embracing the differences becomes not only possible, but joyful. But by focusing on the differences, we skipped a necessary step.

It's the Whole Language/New Math approach to cultural education. ("Good readers read whole words at once, therefore we should throw out phonics and teach kids to read whole words at once"; "Strong interpersonal relationships involve enjoying and rejoicing in one another's differences, therefore we should skip unity and go straight to embracing differences."

Are you inclined to become friends with someone who is only different from you, no matter their race or religion? NO. Anyone who thought that was the way to go was foolish.

And their foolishness has been embraced by a nation that has weakened itself almost to the point of becoming the laughingstock of the world.

The solution to the prejudice and intolerance problem does NOT lie in focusing on all the things that make us different. Instead, it is in focusing on the unities (not samenesses, but unities--like in loyalty to family and country) and commonalities we all have, and then on how the differences (which will always exist) can benefit us all. We need to be able to look at our nation and not see a bunch of warring tribes (which is what Diversity has done to us), but a strong and unified bunch who are proud of their Americanness instead of ashamed.

Unfortunately, rooting out rotten idea that have taken firm hold in a cultural consciousness requires a massive upheaval. Getting rid of the evil ideas that were embraced and culminated in the 1920s mentality (which we seem to have embraced again) required twenty YEARS of massive suffering, lots of poverty, disease, death...the Great Depression and World War II.

No comments: