According to orthodox American left-wing identity politics, everyone is somehow oppressed — except for older, white heterosexual males, of course. The left established and enforces a de facto hierarchy of supposedly-marginalized, oppressed groups that accepts that some have it worse than others.
The hierarchy is governed by a concept called “intersectionality,” a scheme its originator defined as “the interconnected nature of social categorizations such as race, class, and gender as they apply to a given individual or group, regarded as creating overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination or disadvantage.”
Think of it as a system of inverse oppression “superiority” in which identity groups ranked higher on “intersectionality’s” oppression scale, i.e., the less-oppressed, are considered oppressors of those lower in the hierarchy. When identity groups’ hair-trigger senses of grievance conflict, committed progressives must favor the “more oppressed.”
Yeah, I know … It makes my head hurt a little, too, but, as left-wing projects typically do, “intersectionality” has produced amusing unintended consequences.
For example, the Democratic presidential field once numbered more than a dozen white males, including an openly gay man in a same-sex marriage and one who isn’t even a Democrat, four white females, two black men, a black woman, one Hispanic male (two, if you bought “Beto” O’Rourke’s schtick), a male of Asian heritage, a female Pacific Islander, and (maybe) an Ewok. The Democrats’ possibilities from among two-dozen (plus-or-minus) “intersectional” aspirants have dwindled to arguably the most non-inclusive field imaginable.
Party realists know Elizabeth Warren cannot win, and, in a general election, small-town “Mayor Pete” won’t even carry his home state, so, while hyper-liberal activists have been busy embracing intersectionality and writing the entire heterosexual white working-class out of the Democratic Party’s jury-rigged identity politics coalition, intersectional grievance-culture conflicts created intramural turmoil from which only a geriatric, wealthy, white, heterosexual male will likely emerge as their nominee. Ironic, huh?
But, things get funnier…
Despite having a husband and two sons, all biological males, last year Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand tweeted: “The Future is Female. Intersectional. Powered in our belief in one another. And we’re just getting started.” Candidate Gillibrand dropped out, so scratch one semi-young, white, intersectional feminist. In fact, despite media enthusiasm for intersectional Democrats, their primary has been an intersectional demolition derby.
“Intersectionality” devotees categorically reject that Sen. Kamala Harris, a black woman, was simply a lousy, unfocused candidate, so when Harris withdrew, Sen. Corey Booker (one of two black males who also didn’t qualify to appear in the December Democratic debate), bemoaned, perhaps opportunistically, the intersectional crimes of “racism” and “sexism” that “caused” Harris’ failure to gain political traction.
Booker overlooked that, despite early debates, Democrats are still just approaching their official primary season, so the only Americans who failed to support Harris’ candidacy (or, for that matter, his) are other Democrats. Applying Booker’s logic, then, self-proclaimed “big-tent” Democrats are the party of racism and misogyny.
Lacking self-awareness, sanctimonious progressives, including media enablers, will still attempt to lay “intersectionality” guilt trips on blameless Americans. Laughter is the appropriate response.
Contact columnist Jerry Shenk at firstname.lastname@example.org