In my last post I spoke of how a feminised version of virtue ethics has taken root in our society. Now that it’s roots are so embedded the dangers of this is being increased by the politics of identity and the Marxist thoughts on oppressor and oppressed.
I’m not the first to comment on the assumption that there is one group of people whom you can make assumptions about their ‘goodness’ based on their characteristics; those on the right and, in identity politics terms, they are stereotyped as white and male. Although the stereotype can be portrayed as carrying middle or upper class status, this can be adapted to the working classes and even females when the stimulation is right (for that read when these identities don’t agree with Leftist thought). On these last two groups and equal amount of vitriol and patronising, condescension will be bestowed. However one identifier always remains; the person’s whiteness. Because it is a racist stereotype that’s invoked. But more on that in my next post.
As mentioned it is the combination of the right, feminine virtues and the Marxist dogma that is so explosive. It can be seen then that rather than focus on facts to determine if a policy is just or moral, what inevitably is happening is an emotional response is being confused with virtue and used to indicate morality, and the identity of the person is used to implicate guilt.
Emotions can easily be manipulated – including pride in being a good person – and so a crescendo of emotion based morality directed at the wrong type of people can easily turn into a ‘righteous’ mob.
Mobs aren’t necessarily Left or Right in their politics; people within them can be apolitical. But when reason isn’t a necessity to feeling righteous or as a means to approach things with a demand for fast results, rather than a logical and slow manner, then a willing army of volunteers can be found quickly.
I was thinking of all this recently when the Day of Rage was announced; ostensibly by the sense of injustice felt by the Grenfell fire, but one in a series of public protests that have been or have the potential to be violent on both sides of the Atlantic.
It seems that after each election, each referenda that the Left have lost have resulted in such demonstrations; and, again, I know I’m not the first to point this out.
However, unlike the almost mythological right wing demonstrations these Left wing ones are being pandered to by those in authority within the Left. From university students intimidating other members on campus, to rioters, to those calling for the overturning of an elected government (both recently and with a clear majority).
So why are these acts of political and physical violence tolerated?
Within the Left’s political thought is the inherent sense of a utopia. The ends justify the means because we are moving towards a better world. So actions themselves aren’t right or wrong, remember it’s people and virtues that are good, so how we get there is open to question.
The Right, however, doesn’t believe in utopia. Not because they believe that this would be a bad thing, or that they want to keep all their goodies to themselves (although, like the unthinking mobs that can be co-opted by the Left, unthinking people can identify with this belief too for selfish reasons). It is because they believe we are ultimately all flawed, not just certain groups of us.
So whereas a Marxists can see, for example, a factory owner and his workers as de facto oppressor and oppressed, the right would look to how he was fulfilling his duties towards those people to ascertain his morality. Feminist Marxists, seeing an oppressor husband and oppressed wife, would apportion blame as to a similar criteria and so forth.
As there are such clearly identified bad and good people, violence can be used against them as a legitimate means to bring about the utopia. Anyone can, of course, determine when and how violence is appropriate as long as they have the right virtues and are of ‘the oppressed’.
Whereas the Right, who believe in absolute morality revealed through reason, see violence as only allowed within a framework of justice. That doesn’t mean that there are not people who identify as ‘right wing’ who engage in violence, but that this doesn’t fit the pattern of right wing belief which sees the use of violence as being approached through reason, based on the threat to the sanctity of life and being enacted by those with proper authority.
Why is there such a counterintuitive reality over gun laws in the States? I don’t profess to know a lot about such things and, being British my experience is of living in a country where the possession of guns is not part of our consciousness, I approach the debate as someone’s who is naturally averse to wide gun ownership.
However an examination of the facts show that the mass shootings in the United States develop in the late 1960s and early 1980s, despite their wide availability for more than two centuries. If the multiple-victim shootings in schools (such as Connecticut and Columbine) are a modern phenomenon it is the cultural change that has led to this. This cultural change can find its basis in Marxist political thinking.
In fact, if anything, the terror attacks in Europe and the US has further clarified this, as these mass killers have often had no use of weapons apart from those everyone has easily to hand (yes, I know these latter incidents have another common denominator, but I believe it’s no coincidence that the Left and Islam make such cosy bedfellows at present).
These school shootings main purpose are to kill as many young people as possible, yet on the surface they differ from the recent terrorist atrocities in that they have no obvious, discernible reason that the average person in the street can identify.
However Adam Lanza, the Columbine killers, the Virginia Tech shooter etc all have a common understanding between them; they felt their classmates made them feel inferior and this led them to justify the killing of their classmates over basic, objective moral codes. This has been developed in more specific political ideas in black lives matter in this incident and this for example.
Although this last example could be taken in isolation and be compared to the recent murder of Jo Cox and even the recent Finsbury Park attack these latter two are clearer cases of people acting alone rather than a progression of mainstream, political violence simply because, as stated earlier, the organises publicly and tolerates such mass examples of political violence.
The Right wing equivilant of mass demonstrations are entirely peaceful Right to Life march or the widely condemned by the Right EDL or other fringe, right wing groups. Clinton et al has endorsed ‘the resistance’, Corbyn et al have endorsed ‘The Day of Rage’ and even suggested other forms of violent action to ensure we are a step closer to utopian ‘justice’.
Returning to the recent terrorist atrocities I have said before how the way one associates with your religion is complex, so when examining the religion of Islam for its responsibility in recent terrorist killings this must be taken into account. People are very rarely, apart from cult like situations, immersed totally in a religion without other influences. This is why I made my earlier comment of the strange bedfellows of Islam and Marxist identity politics. Many point to the predominantly young jihadists as evidence that this is nothing really to do with Islam or immigration and, to a certain extent, I agree. I see their radicalisation as a result of a dual formation between Islam and idenitity politics. It is no coincidence that it has been widely observed that the young are increasingly pro Left and pro radical Left.