No, “Identity Politics” Didn’t Elect Trump, por Kevin Carson (Center 4 a Stateless Society):
In all the damage assessments and recriminations following the presidential election, one theme I’ve seen way too much of is blaming Trump’s victory on “political correctness.” One person blamed the Left for “demonizing white men” for the past eight years instead of focusing on economic and class issues. Another clutched his pearls about what a dumb strategic move it was to dismiss most of Trump’s supporters as “deplorables.” And at Reason, human dumpster fire Robby Soave — whose shtik seems to be retyping old Reed Irvine and Dinesh D’Souza screeds with his name on them — literally lays the blame for Trump at the feet of campus speech codes, trigger warnings and safe spaces. (No, if anything defeated Clinton it was stay-at-home Democratic voters disgusted by a Democratic Party that embraced way too many of the same neoliberal — not genuinely libertarian — economic policies favored by Reason.)
But the cultural Right’s sense of grievance is utter nonsense. For people who complain so much about the “politics of victimhood,” they play the victim card better than anybody else.
Long ago, as a child, I can remember hearing old folks complain that “this country’s been going to pot ever since all these people started screaming about their ‘rights.'” And that’s still the attitude of those who talk about “taking our country back.”
Whatever they think of marginalized people demanding their rights, they sure aren’t modest about the rights they claim for themselves. They think they have the right to decide what languages people speak, what religious garb they wear, who they marry, and what bathrooms they go to. And when they talk about PC as an assault on their freedom, what they’re referring to is their freedom to prohibit other people from doing things they disapprove of. You can’t even say “Happy Holidays” to them without them whining about a “War on Christmas.” For all their mockery of “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings,” they’re the most emotionally fragile and easily offended people in existence.
They actually talk about “Thought Police,” and sidle up to other white males with “I guess we’re not allowed to say this any more, but…”
If you compare their complaints to the complaints of the marginalized people they criticize, they’re completely asymmetrical. Women in hijabs have to worry about being verbally and physically assaulted when they leave their homes. Unarmed black people have to worry about being shot in the back and having drop guns planted on their bodies, or being killed in “nickel rides” by sadistic cops. Gay and trans people have to worry about being stomped to death.
So if you think you’re living in a totalitarian nightmare because you have to worry about somebody giving you a dirty look for saying the n-word, or because you’re expected not to throw a tantrum when you see a woman in a hijab or two men kissing, I’ve got the world’s smallest violin. And if you think that’s a sufficient grievance to justify voting for a crypto-fascist just to “teach ’em a lesson,” then yes, you are deplorable.