If you playact being shot by the police, cry “racist!” on Twitter, or denounce capitalism, you, too, can feel good about your capitalist’s privilege.
In an affluent postmodern society of nearly unlimited freedom and opportunity, elite celebrities, pampered athletes, comfortable academics, conniving politicians, and careerist journalists find it hard to prove that they are still relevant in a revolutionary or rather cool sense.
In medieval times, privileged sinners found absolution for their guilt through more formal contractual penance. Churchmen consulted books of penitentials that prescribed precise medicinal doses — donations, pilgrimages, fasting, and a host of other sacrificial acts — to offset particular sins to get them right again with God. The key was to find a way to keep enjoying sinning and still get to heaven on the cheap.
In our atheistic and agnostic society, inexpensive, loud, and public virtue-mongering has replaced church penance — with Black Lives Matter, La Raza, Al Sharpton, network anchor people, NPR, the New York Times, and such acting as the new bishops who can dispense exemptions.
The wealthy, the influential, the intelligentsia, and the cultural elite all broadcast their virtues — usually at a cut-rate rhetorical price — to offset their own sense of sin (as defined by feelings of guilt), or in fear that their own lives are antithetical to the ideologies they espouse, or sometimes simply as a wise career move. Sin these days is mostly defined as race/class/gender thought crimes. Read more →
Proper liberal credentials trump all the usual forms of identity politics.
By Victor Davis Hanson // National Review Online
In the 21st century, doctrinaire liberalism is synonymous with hypocrisy.
Or maybe it is better seen as career insurance, providing exemption from all the many paradoxes of a leftist worldview.
The rich supporter of affirmative action still uses, without apology, the old-boy network to pull privileged strings to get his own son admitted to the proper college. Al Gore flies on a carbon-spewing private jet, saving the planet by getting to conferences more quickly and enjoyably. High-tax proponent John Kerry docks his yacht where he can avoid taxes; how else to ensure downtime for furthering social justice?
In the present postmodern world, we are told that there is no such thing as a biologically distinct gender. Instead, gender is now socially constructed. It can be defined by the individual in almost any way he or she sees fit.
In the old days, many clinical psychologists would have believed that Caitlyn Jenner — who first came to fame as Olympian Bruce Jenner — is experiencing a well-chronicled psychological state known as transvestism, or the innate pleasure in wearing the clothes and assuming the manners and appearance of the opposite sex.
Polls show that racial relations have gotten much worse under Barack Obama. Why has that happened?
by Victor Davis Hanson // PJ Media
Why do polls show that racial relations have gotten much worse under Barack Obama, who won the White House with over 95% of the black — and 45% of the white — vote?
A recent New York Times/CBS News poll  just revealed that about 60% of Americans feel race relations are not good. Some 40% think that they will become even worse. Yet when Obama was elected, 66% of those polled felt race relations were generally OK. All racial groups, according to recent polling, believe that Obama’s handling of racial relations has made things worse since 2009. Another recent Pew poll confirms these tensions, and suggests whites are now about as pessimistic as blacks.
Want Him to Enforce Laws That Would Have Kept Kate Steinle Alive? Governor Jerry Brown Thinks You’re a ‘Troglodyte’
by Victor Davis Hanson // PJ Media
Last March, California Governor Jerry Brown declared that those who wished existing federal immigration law to be enforced — in the manner that would have saved the late Kate Steinle from a five-times deported, seven-times released felon illegal alien – were:
[A]t best … troglodyte, and at worst … un-Christian.
Democracies have been fickle for 2,000 years, but the Internet makes it worse.
One of the most harrowing incidents in the Athenian historian Thucydides’ history of the Peloponnesian War is the democratic debate over the rebellious subject state of Mytilene on the distant island of Lesbos. Thucydides uses his riveting account of the Athenian argument over the islanders’ fate to warn his readers of the fickle nature of democracy.
The Confederate battle flag is far from the only worrisome symbol in America today.
Everyone is weighing in on the horrific murders in Charleston and blaming the mindset of the mass murderer on wider social pathologies. After the airing of the racist crackpot ideas of the unhinged Dylann Roof, calls have gone out to ban the public flying of the battle flag of the Old Confederacy, which has also been incorporated in various forms in four state flags. Perhaps we should step back and eschew symbolism that separates us by race rather than unites us as fellow citizens.
In our time, sexism and racism have become the province of the rich.
Discrimination by sex and by race are ancient innate pathologies and transcend particular cultures. But the American idea of sexismand racism in the 21st century — unfailing, endemic, and institutional discrimination by a majority-white-male-privileged culture against both women and so-called non-white minorities — has largely become a leftist construct.
We can see how these two relativist -isms work in a variety of ways.