A divided people are more easily conquered. The Imperialist European powers were well aware of this and commonly drew borders in their overseas colonies to encompass competing indigenous peoples so that those groups would fight with each other and not the conquering Europeans. Additionally they gained political capital by putting themselves in the position of arbiters of the disputes and alleviators of grievances for those indigenous people. The political left in the modern United States is also well aware of this strategy.
Their most powerful weapon today is identity politics and the trump card in that deck is racial identity. They actively and deliberately fan the flames of racial animus and stoke grievances among minority populations. By playing the part of arbiters and alleviators they gain loyal voter support of minorities and by cobbling together a number of those minorities seek to gain a majority. They use the threat of labeling one a racist as a gag for those that disagree with them. The problem of course is that it is injurious to our society and culture to set a common people against themselves. Fortunately it appears to be a failing strategy of late yet they are doubling down on it.
They have targeted every minority but the primary recipients have been Blacks. Until recently Black Americans were the largest minority in the United States. Constant reminders of the history of slavery, of real and imagined grievances, and relegating them to second-class citizenry have divided our country politically along racial lines. Over time and with great effort many of the rifts between Black America and the rest of the country had largely healed but they are intent on re-opening those wounds. Their post-racial America looks more like the mid-nineteenth century than the early twenty first.
My own children belong to groups of friends that include mixed couples and members of all races, including a number of Blacks. In their direct experience those rifts don’t exist, but ask them about it and they can tell you all about the ignus fatuus that animates their politics.
The left has actively and deliberately perpetrated resentment among the races for their own political gain successfully for decades. Many of them focus exclusively on that goal and profit handsomely from it. In order to do this they necessarily must cast away the very foundation of liberty – self-ownership. Self-ownership does not tolerate the assignment of collective guilt – that some are guilty of the sins of others. Personal responsibility is an anathema to those pushing to redistribute wealth from the descendants of slave holders to the descendants of slaves. No members of either group are victims or perpetrators and one of those groups barely exists at all.
Their assignment of guilt is built on the absurd assertion that one is guilty of acts they neither performed or had any hand in deciding. The inevitable conclusion of the assertion that whites are guilty by mere virtue of their skin color, something they can cannot decide or change, refutes the agency of a large portion of the human race. Simply put it is the very dehumanizing bigotry that gave rise to slavery in the first place.
How then to remedy this? What would be enough? If mere whiteness is guilt then nothing will ever be enough because we cannot change the past nor can anyone change their skin color. The repugnant answer to that question can only be total theft and extermination. Their answer is not to end oppression but to have the oppressed and oppressors exchange places. The morality of our society would decay to the primitive.
The most grotesque aspect of this strategy is that the very premises of it are smoke. Racial differences are will-o-the wisps and focusing on them distracts us from solving real problems. It deprives all of us of the benefits of solidarity with our fellow countrymen. It wastes vast amounts of human potential. It creates unnecessary strife and poverty.
The first step in solving this problem is to identify the problem. What if it turns out the problem is not a problem at all. That in a calculated way the left has manufactured straw giants and murky definitions which is a much bigger problem than race or class?
See that Black dude over there? We have a common humanity. He isn’t a Black dude. His name is John and he is my countryman. So I ask you what does race mean?