Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Diversity, faux and real

One thing that struck me about this presidential primary season was how the candidates of each party reflected their respective visions of diversity.

For Democrats, diversity is just bean-counting. All of the candidates thought alike, so the most important thing about the candidates ended up being what supposedly oppressed groups each of them belonged to. Since preening metrosexual trial lawyers who have fun babies while their wives fight cancer is not a preferred grievance group at all, and Mexican-Americans with Anglo surnames isn’t preferred enough, it pretty much had to come down to either the black guy or the woman.

In contrast, Republicans are aligned with the Martin Luther King vision: what matters is a candidate’s character and stands on issues, not the color of their skin or what’s covered by their underwear. Thus on the Republican side you had pro- and anti-war candidates, pro-and anti-abortion candidates, pro- and anti-illegal immigration candidates, pro-and anti-gun candidates, etc.

I think this neatly summarizes where the major parties and their supporters are in 2008. If diversity of opinion matters to you more than group membership, you probably lean more often to Republican candidates or points of view. If you are partial to "diversity" as the term is currently used and are generally hostile to diversity of opinion, you are probably more sympathetic to Democrats and their positions.

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