I recently posted a brilliantly reasoned criticism of liberals and what I call The Great Liberal Hypocrisy known as diversity. This is the hypocrisy in which they pretend to be tolerant, open, and welcoming to all people and all ideas while in fact embracing a very narrowly defined set of ideals and people. Namely, those who precisely share their views. As evidence of this hypocrisy, I posted some tweets in reaction to African American actress Stacey Dash’s pronouncement that she planned to vote for, GASP, Mitt Romney. When I wrote this piece, I anticipated 3 reactions from my liberal friends and family. Predictably, I got all 3. In no particular order:
1. C’mon Bruce, those tweets were posted by nutty liberals way way way out there on the lefty fringe. Don’t judge us all by a few crazies.
3. Not me! You know me. I’m not like that.
3. There’s hypocrisy on the right too.
I won’t address #3 because I agree with it. There’s hypocrisy throughout the world and I challenge anyone who read the original post to point out where I said liberals had cornered the market on hypocrisy. Please feel free to go to www.wordpress.com, start your own blog, and blog till you’re blue in the keyboard about conservative hypocrisy. I promise I’ll post comments about how it’s just a fringe group on the far right and definitely doesn’t include me! But, until and even after you do that, this response is specious.
On a more serious note, while I can think of examples of right wing hypocrisy, I know of no examples where institutions far and wide have been forced to build entire infrastructures to enforce their hypocrisy on everyone else.
#1 and #2 are more troubling in one sense and yet they make my point for me. The Great Liberal Hypocrisy is characterized most acutely by its close cousin, The Great Liberal Blind Spot. I actually do not believe that liberals sit around in coffee houses saying to each other, “Hey, let’s pretend to embrace diversity while in fact being completely exclusive of huge swaths of people and thought.” It’s not nearly that contrived nor conniving. So, to my liberal friends who commented, publicly or privately, on my piece last week, I don’t think you’re deliberately hypocritical.
I debated long and hard about whether I should use the Stacey Dash example and whether I should post the incredibly inflammatory tweets in response to her decision. I knew full well when I did so that I was opening myself up to the “hey those are just the lefty wingnuts; they don’t speak for all of us” argument. But, I decided to set the trap so we could have the discussion about the blind spot.
And, that’s why I included my personal story about my experience as a lone conservative parent at a very liberal school and the hurtful derision I had to constantly endure from mainstream suburban liberals as a result of this. I did this to give my liberal commentariat an out. Surely they would see in that example that The Great Liberal Hypocrisy is NOT limited to the nose ring and body art crowd tweeting about Stacey Dash. Amazingly, it didn’t seem to bring much clarity at all. In fact, one of the public comments on my story suggests, incredibly, that not only are the Stacey Dash tweeters out on the fringe, but so were all of the 80 or so parents I interacted with at my kids’ school over a 15 year period. It’s just impossible that any “normal” liberal could think and act that way.
Thus, the blind spot. This is just how liberals think. Their beliefs are the right ones, we should all hold them, and anyone who doesn’t is racist, homophobic, stupid, or worse. Before I close, I do want to assuage my liberal fans with the notion that while hypocrisy is a tough word, and I recognize that, I don’t think this makes them bad people. I think they believe in their heart of hearts that their ideals are the best ones, to the exclusion of all others. And, thus, any notion of diversity or tolerance need only include all the diverse liberal values. And, that we should build a massive national infrastructure to make sure everyone else thinks like them and holds their values. It’s a blind spot, not an evil spot.
In closing, for those of you who are still not convinced (given my cogent writings, I imagine that to be a vanishingly small number of people), I offer you the following clip from the Jon Stewart Show. When Jon Stewart and I agree on something, there’s simply gotta be something to it!