The Problem with Intersectional Feminism

Those of us committed to social justice are accustomed to being told that intersectional feminism with its focus on critical race theory, queer theory and anti-ableism is the key. Only intersectionality, we are assertively informed, really listens to the experiences and needs of women of color, LGBTs, disabled people and other marginalized groups. Is this true? If we all embraced intersectionality, would we find that we are better supporting a diverse range of people from marginalized groups? Or would we find that we are supporting only the adherents to a very narrow political ideology of the far-left and disregarding the majority of women, people of color, LGBTs and disabled people?

The concept of intersectionality was introduced into academic theory and social justice activism in the late 1980s by Kimberlé Crenshaw, Professor of Law at UCLA and Columbia Law School and founder of critical race theory. It gradually became the dominant social justice framework. Crenshaw opposed the mainstream liberalism of the time for its aim to look past categories of race, gender and sexuality, thereby levelling the playing field and enabling all people to succeed by their own abilities. She felt this neglected identity and identity politics which she argued to be personally and politically empowering. That “mainstream” form of liberalism is now commonly known as “universal liberalism”, “classical liberalism” or sometimes “Enlightenment liberalism” because it focused on universal human rights, but also on the individual’s freedom to pursue their own path. To Crenshaw, this form of liberalism neglected categories like race and gender around which were built structures of power which needed to be addressed, and failed to consider the way in which multiple layers of identity could complicate the problem.

This is a valid observation. We interact with society on three main levels; as a member of the human race with common needs and drives; as a member of one of numerous categories including gender, race, nationality, culture or religion; and as an individual with our own distinct interests and abilities. Universal liberalism focused on the first and third: universal human rights which would then free individuals to follow their own paths. Intersectionality focuses almost entirely on the second: group identity. We see this most clearly when Crenshaw says “We all can recognize the distinction between the claims “I am Black” and the claim “I am a person who happens to be Black.” She advocates the former as positive, powerful and celebratory and rejects the latter as striving for a universality that is less likely to be productive.

Intersectionality, therefore, has an intense focus on identity and particularly on racial and ethnic identity. The common positions are “We are here for women of color, trans people, lesbian, gay and bi people and the differently abled” and “Listen to women, listen to people of color.”

Are women of color all saying the same thing?

Listen to them all? Are they saying the same thing?

So, we just listen to them when they talk about intersectionality? Do they all do that?

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It seems not.

In reality, women of color, the LGBT and disabled people are to be found along the whole range of the political spectrum and subscribe to a vast array of ideas, whilst intersectionality is decidedly left-wing and based on a very specific ideology. Although there is considerable confusion and overlap in the use of terms to discuss gradations of leftism, there is a consistent sense of a moderate left and a far-left and a common perception of intersectionality with its focus on identity politics and systems of privilege as “far-left.” This is consistent with how intersectionals see themselves as radical reformers of a liberalism which was too mainstream or too centrist. Some reject the label “liberal” for this reason. They define themselves in opposition to the right and frequently accuse “moderate” leftists or universal liberals of having conservative or right-wing ideas.

The problem with positioning an ideology on the far-left and claiming it to represent women, people of color, LGBTs and disabled people is that this requires all members of those groups to be far-left which they simply aren’t. In the US, the number of Americans identifying as liberal reached a record high of 24% in 2015 in comparison to the conservative 38%. [1] Britons are almost evenly divided between left and right. [2] Women are generally somewhat more likely to be left-leaning than men [3] but very many are not. 47% of African Americans identify as liberal and 45% as conservative. [4] In the UK, the Conservative party claimed 33% of Black and Middle Eastern voters in comparison to Labour’s 52%, with Black Britons being most likely to vote Labour, whilst among the Asian community, Hindus and Sikhs are more likely to vote Conservative and Muslims to vote Labour.[5] British LGBTs are as likely to be right-wing as left-wing [6]whilst American LGBTs are much more likely to be left-wing,[7] almost certainly because of the religious nature of the American right and its implications for LGBT equality. There is nothing to suggest people with disabilities are more likely to identify with any particular political position. Intersectionality, simply by positioning itself on the far-left of the political spectrum, immediately closes itself off from a significant proportion of women, people of color, LGBTs and disabled people.

On the level of its ideology, intersectionality becomes inaccessible to even more people. To be intersectional is to focus on many different categories of marginalized identity at once, be convinced that they are marginalized and be concerned about them all. It is not enough to be a woman or even to be a feminist. One must also subscribe to critical race theory, queer theory, trans equality and anti-ableism discourses. People of color, LGBTs and disabled people must subscribe to appropriate theories for their own identity and also those of all the others. The problem is that most women are not any kind of feminist, most people of color are not scholars of critical race theory, many LGBTs are indifferent to queer theory and disabled people are not particularly likely to consider this part of their political identity. Furthermore, they may or may not be interested in, knowledgeable about or supportive of the other categories of marginalized identity included in the intersectional framework.

Only 20% of American women are feminists with 29% regarding it as ethically neutral and 30% as mostly negative.[8] Only 9% of British women are feminists[9] and similarly indifferent or negative views are expressed. This appears to be consistent across races.[10] Of the minority who are feminist, it is unclear how many are intersectional feminists, how many are radical feminists (opposed by intersectional feminists), how many are non-intersectional liberal feminists (opposed by intersectional feminists) and how many have no ideology of feminism but simply consider it the name for the gender equality supported by the vast majority of the population.

Intersectionality faces a particular problem when it comes to intersections between race and sexuality or gender identity. Left-voting people of color are significantly less likely to be supportive of LGBT equality than White lefties. Black voters voted two to one against Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance[11] to prevent discrimination based on gender identity and sexuality, and in California, 70% of African American voters voted to ban same sex-marriage. [12]Ronald Brownstein in his analysis of Pew statistics on Democrats voters notes a divide, saying “Democrats must weigh the culturally liberal instincts of their now mostly secular wing of upscale Whites with the often more traditional inclinations of their African-American and Latino supporters, who are much more likely than White Democrats to identify with Christian faiths.” He cites the conservative Kevin Williamson, “White liberals simply care a great deal more about some things — the social condition of so-called transsexuals, climate change — than do non-White voters who nonetheless lean heavily toward the Democrats,”

A similar trend is to be found in the UK. There has been a tendency for some in the Black community to regard homosexuality as a “White disease” [13] leading to greater discrimination against Black LGBTs. The “Stop Murder Music” campaign was set up to tackle lyrics in certain genres of Black music which advocated violence against and murder of LGBTs. Homophobia in the Asian community is also higher than the national average [14] whilst gay Asians have reported experiencing racism in gay venues. [15] In a 2009 survey, 0% of (predominantly left-wing) British Muslims said homosexuality was morally acceptable[16] and in 2016, 52% said it should be illegal, compared to 5% of the general population.[17] The same survey found that 39% of British Muslims felt that wives should always obey their husbands, compared to 5% of the general population.

Large proportions of people from marginalized groups simply decline to be intersectional and this is a problem for an ideology which claims to listen to them and represent them. Unlike universal liberalism, in which liberal principles supersede identity and enable liberals to consistently criticise prejudice and discrimination wherever they find it, intersectionality with its focus on identity, becomes confused when marginalized groups discriminate against each other. True to Crenshaw’s original focus on race, this is particularly the case when people of color or ethnic minorities exhibit homophobic or patriarchal attitudes. This has resulted in bizarre situations in which Peter Tatchell has felt compelled to explain why it’s not racist to object to Black musicians singing about killing LGBTs [18]and Muslim and ex-Muslim feminists why it’s not Islamophobic to object to gender specific modesty codes and that it would, in fact, be nice to have support with that from intersectional feminists. [19]

It is clearly misguided to assume that by listening to intersectionals, we are listening to women, people of color, LGBTs and the disabled. We are, in fact, listening to a minority ideological view dominated by people from an economically privileged class who have had a university education in the social sciences and/or the necessary leisure time and education to study intersectionality, critical race theory, queer theory and critical analyses of ableism.

It is, of course, perfectly possible to support the rights of marginalized groups and campaign for their greater representation whilst accepting that they have a range of political views including those which contradict yours. However, this is not what intersectional feminists do. We are told repeatedly that intersectionality is the only way and that it is not optional.

In addition to the slogan about intersectionality being compulsory, the mantras “My feminism will be intersectional or it will be bullshit” and “Feminism without intersectionality is White supremacy” are also to be found on social media, blogs, campaigns and protests.

Non-intersectional feminists are labelled “White feminists” and vilified furiously. It is important to note that not all “White feminists” are White. The term refers to any non-intersectional feminist.

ninjacates_guide_to_white_feminism_FINAL_A-01.pngFrom BattyMamzelle [20]

As Everyday Feminism tells us,

“Intersectionality is a framework that must be applied to all social justice work, a frame that recognizes the multiple aspects of identity that enrich our lives and experiences and that compound and complicate oppressions and marginalizations… At a more personal level, though, feminism without intersectionality keeps us from fully expressing who we are! A lack of intersectionality leads to an erasure of people and their identities.” [21]

An individual’s identity must be tied to their group categories and must be expressed in an intersectional way. People of color who transgress the boundaries of what someone of their race or ethnicity is supposed to think receive the most vitriol (as heretics always do). Black people considered not to espouse properly Black views which include far-leftism, unconditional support of Black Lives Matter and even specific sports teams are likely to be called “Uncle Toms” or even subjected to racial slurs including “coon” or “house nigger.”

The British liberal blogger, Tom Owolade, takes strong exception to this language,

“Because inherent in those terms is a sinister implication: ‘if you disagree with how I think a brown person should think, you’re still a nigger’ – a slave subordinate to the interests of white people. ‘If you disagree with me, you can’t be thinking for yourself’ is the message.” [22]

Muslim and ex-Muslim liberals encounter the same external restrictions when attempting to critique any aspect of their own religion or culture. When criticising any illiberal aspect of doctrine or culture, including sexism, homophobia, intolerance of apostates or theocratic ideas affecting them or others, they are likely to be labelled “Uncle Toms” “House-Arabs” or “native informants.” Again, the implication is that they are pandering to White non-Muslims and could not possibly have their own views on their own culture or the same moral right to discuss them as White westerners do. The term “native informant” has even been used for Muslim or ex-Muslim critics of Islam in university lectures. [23] This must surely discourage the most vulnerable minority within the minority Muslim community from sharing their thoughts and experiences. Ayaan Hirsi Ali, an ex-Muslim survivor of FGM and escapee of forced marriage who critiques these and other violent oppressions and Maajid Nawaz, a believing Muslim reformer who works towards a liberal, plural and tolerant vision of Islam have been placed on a list of “Anti-Muslim extremists” for their criticisms of illiberal practices in their own communities. [24] Both of them receive credible death-threats from Islamists.

Intersectionality, by undervaluing shared human experience and rights — universality — and personal autonomy and distinctiveness — individuality — and focusing intensely on group identity and intersectional ideology, places individuals in a very restricted “collectivist” position previously only found in very conservative cultures.

As a White, mostly heterosexual woman with a disability, I have had some experience of these expectations when entering political debate. I am frequently condemned as a “White feminist” and when I point out that I am not a feminist at all, it is demanded that I explain how this is possible if I am woman who believes in gender equality. My ideological differences are not accepted. Instead I am informed that I am pandering to men and am a gender traitor, a fascist and a misogynist. The question of whether or not I should identify as “bisexual” has been of far more interest to intersectional feminists than to me. Both have been argued in the service of showing me to have failed ethically following my expression of non-intersectional views. If I don’t identify as bisexual despite having had a couple of female short-term partners, I am contributing to the erasure of bisexual women. If I do identify as bisexual, despite having always wanted a long-term relationship with a man, and having been in one for 18 years, I am claiming a marginalized identity I have no right to because I do not experience the struggles of bisexual women. If I don’t identify by my disability (which I don’t), I have no right to an opinion on discourses around ableism and if I do, my opinion is perpetuating ableism for people with more severe disabilities. I will usually be reminded that I still have White privilege, class privilege and cisgender privilege and should be quiet and listen. This condemnation is not genuinely to do with the extent of my intersecting “marginalized identities” but my failure to be intersectional about them.

The idea that if one is not an intersectional feminist, one is a misogynist, White supremacist, homophobic, transphobic ableist demands an utter ideological purity that few people can meet or wish to meet. Instead, centrists, moderates and universal liberals of all genders, races, sexualities and abilities continue to oppose discrimination, promote equality and value diversity, independent of intersectionality.

Tom Owolade foregrounds the universal liberal respect for shared humanity and individuality when he says,

“(B)rown people, believe it or not, can be progressives, conservatives, liberals and fascists. The beliefs of black and brown people do not derive from their identity like a linear well. They are human, and as human should be free to believe whatever they want without accusations of treachery. It carries with it the pernicious idea – which I thought was long buried – that individuals shouldn’t be individuals but effectively stereotypes.”

It is regrettable that intersectionality in practice so often manifests in restrictive ideological conformity, exclusionary tactics, hostility, tribalism and even racist abuse. It’s regrettable because liberalism could be benefitted by specialist attention to the ways in which specific groups within society are advantaged or disadvantaged. However, focus on group identity and experience should not come at the cost of respect for the whole world of human ideas and experience and every individual’s right to access and subscribe to any part of it. Until intersectionality respects diversity of ideas as well as of identity and supports every individual’s right to hold any of them regardless of their group identity, it cannot be said to represent anything except its own ideology.

Notes

[1] http://www.gallup.com/poll/180452/liberals-record-trail-conservatives.aspx

[2] https://www.ipsos-mori.com/researchpublications/researcharchive/poll.aspx?oItemID=101&view=wide

[3] US http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/07/28/a-closer-look-at-the-gender-gap-in-presidential-voting/

UK https://www.ipsos-mori.com/researchpublications/researcharchive/poll.aspx?oItemID=101&view=wide

[4] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-baxley/african-americans-democratic_b_12680256.html

[5] http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/the-4-charts-that-show-labour-may-be-losing-the-ethnic-minority-vote-10274051.html

[6] https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/mar/23/tories-level-labour-gay-vote

[7] http://www.gallup.com/poll/158102/lgbt-americans-skew-democratic-largely-support-obama.aspx

[8] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/16/feminism-poll_n_3094917.html

[9] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/life/only-7-per-cent-of-britons-consider-themselves-feminists/

[10] https://libres.uncg.edu/ir/uncg/f/A_Hunter_Feminist_1998.pdf

[11] https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/11/how-houstons-black-voters-stopped-the-equal-rights-ordinance/433335/

[12] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2013/03/26/how-proposition-8-passed-in-california-and-why-it-wouldnt-today/?utm_term=.e498b9995545

[13] https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2003/jan/16/gayrights.world

[14] http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/11290475/Homophobia-taints-the-British-Asian-community.html

[15] http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8555503.stm

[16] https://www.theguardian.com/uk/2009/may/07/muslims-britain-france-germany-homosexuality

[17] https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/apr/11/british-muslims-strong-sense-of-belonging-poll-homosexuality-sharia-law

[18] http://www.petertatchell.net/international/jamaica/blackhomophobia.htm

[19] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/12/21/as-muslim-women-we-actually-ask-you-not-to-wear-the-hijab-in-the-name-of-interfaith-solidarity/?utm_term=.58412b899605

[20] http://battymamzelle.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/This-Is-What-I-Mean-When-I-Say-White-Feminism.html

[21] http://everydayfeminism.com/2015/01/why-our-feminism-must-be-intersectional/

[22] https://tomowolade.wordpress.com/2015/06/27/the-racism-of-some-anti-racists/

[23] http://www.secularism.org.uk/blog/2015/06/the-islamophobia-delusion

[24] http://cjonline.com/opinion/2016-11-12/matt-johnson-defense-ayaan-hirsi-ali-and-maajid-nawaz

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67 comments

  1. Being a far left school of thought, intersectionality is unsurprisingly a lot like communism. Both posit that they are wholly necessary philosophies that will bring an end to perceived ills and will usher in an era of true equality. Peel back all of their layers of post-modernist language and it’s easy to see that they are actually toxic, hateful and dehumanizing ideologies that reduce humans to categories and not individuals.

    Intersectionality, in particular, seems to think it can erase these perceived social constructs of race and gender by obsessing over them. Martin Luther King’s ideal of “Judge not by skin color, but by content of character” has been casted aside as not radical enough. So has dialogue and debate. So has objectivity. So has Western thought and enlightenment. And so on and so on.

    Intersectionality is certainly enjoying its day in the sun. It’s the pretty much the dominant leftist viewpoint on college campuses, in activists circles and in quite a few quadrants of media and politics as well. But as an ideology, it is doomed and destined to disappear up its own butthole. A sociopolitical theory that fixates obsessively on victimhood and rigid views of what constitutes as “power and privilege” isn’t going to yield any real positive social outcomes. People will be more and more angry. The intersectional POCs will continue to be angry at the intersectional whites for not being woke enough. The non-liberal and non-intersectional whites will continue to be angry at intersectional POCs for their acceptable bigotry and the intersectional whites for being cowards. The intersectional trans will be angry at all three for not paying enough attention to them, etc.

    Don’t encourage tribalism if you don’t like tribal conflicts. Don’t encourage victim olympics if you don’t like it when the contestants for the oppression trophy start competing against each other. You want to obsess over identities? Don’t cry at the outcome.

  2. After reading these comments, it gave perspective…it’s good to know—in years of living as a gregarious loner—I am not angry, bitter, about the race, gender, personal experiences and consequent skewed perceptions which “define” my short existence on this unique planet.

    Why does the world eschew or give negative connotation to loners? Loners are comfortable in their own skin, aren’t needy for acceptance or proving themselves. They don’t need to join groups and don’t give a shite about standing ground because they know new info always comes along that expands knowledge, can change opinion, outlook.

    Gregarious loners do not care to belong to any kind of group because of a group’s way of seeing the world as an Us against Them.

    It’s important to take a long walk, get out in nature by yourself and maybe realize we’re all “marginalized”—we are all small specks, a grain of sand, with small lifespans…

    We can’t all be astronauts and observe Earth from space to really gain perspective and appreciation for how fragile and wondrous life is…instead are too self-involved with little, meaningless things which, when one’s life ends, seemed so important, was given far more focus, importance than deserved and really never mattered at all.

    Stop group think or trying to grow one by associating merely with people who share sameness. It may help to amplify the relatedness of victimization but eventually it needs to be transcended. Most things valued or focussed on really mean nothing at all. They’re like photos of events, stages in life which eventually are going to have to be left behind.

    To this day, after all these centuries, the most difficult thing to learn and practice is kindness. We’re ever evolving animals still in the taming process.

  3. As far as I can see, intersectionality is much like jazz — a badly needed, vital innovation originally created by black people that has been hijacked by white academics and had the life sucked out of it. (And meanwhile, the original concept that it encoded has been left an orphan yet again.) I have never been accused nastily of being a “white feminist” by anything but a much whiter, trust-fund college kid looking to score points so she can win the tiara for Wokest White Girl In The Room. Black women, lesbians, and disabled women are expected to stand aside and shut up so that Miss White College Kid can look wonderful for having appointed herself their mouthpiece and knock my working-class “dark white” middle-aged ethnic ass against the wall in the meantime.

    I would like to invite 20-something trust-fund “intersectional” feminists to STFU and let me and women of color, disabled women, and lesbians just talk directly to each other. We can, you know. We have mouths and opinions and can actually exchange them with each other unmoderated by you. I guarantee we could make a lot more progress if you’d all just stop acting like you are the facilitators of our conversations. Just sit down, shut up and let other people talk to one another. Better yet, just get the hell out of the room.

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  4. Intersectional feminism is a takeover disguised as equity. The intersectionalists are telling white feminist women to shut the fuck up while proclaiming that they are promoting “inclusion” while telling white feminist women to shut the fuck up while saying that all voices should be heard while telling white feminist women to shut the fuck up… etc. It’s also an attempt to complexify the feminist ideology, so that whoever emerges as feminism’s new leaders can sound erudite and, as the hippies used to say, “with it.” Intersectional feminism is a theory about oppression being so very complicated that only the brightest minds on the far left can understand it correctly, and even they disagree on minor, but apparently very important, details — just as Stalin and Trotsky did during the 1920s.

  5. It’s been quite sometime, but I think I should correct or address certain things:

    1. The flaws in intersectionality stem from its origins: it was designed by Crenshaw to be an ideological framework, where black women would come up on top, in terms of being a “double minority.” It followed the trajectory of the black feminists who separated from the black power movement in the 1970-1980’s, believing that they underwent a different form of oppression compared to black men and white women. As with the black power movement of the 1970’s, the belief was that you could get more done by segregation and group balkanization, than appealing to the universal concepts and activism so common within the liberal framework as was seen in the Civil Rights Generation and the Ghandi movement in India.

    2. Intersectionality seemed to be the most flexible and scalable framework for integrating various elements of the left as the LGBT movement came to rise recently, and thus has been able to maintain various interest groups within the left through activism and mass movements. Unfortunately, by design, intersectionality is rooted in segregation and balkanization, so it’s fuel, and it’s drive can only be driven by a common interest and focus on the common enemy: the white cisgendered male. He can be a metaphor for racism, classism, sexism, genderism, capitalism etc, however the moment that he is not the main focus, the moment he is out of the picture or context of a debate, given no ability to address conflict (without a concept of universality or universal truth, how can you persuade one who equally agrees in something that is opposite to what you believe) they fight one another. As Eric Hoffer would have said, a mass movement doesn’t need a god or an ideal, but it does need a devil.

    3. As with most of postmodern politics, where activism replaces reality, truth as the ultimate goal, and activism for activism’s sake is all that matters, the problem once again comes back to an inability or lack of capability to deal with intra-conflict. Unlike liberalism, which accepts that conflict is part of being free, and it’s through conflict and persuasion that humanity moves forward as long as violence is discouraged, intersectional feminists and most postmodernists view conflict as a product of subversion of their enemies – something the elites push to prevent progress. As you can see above me from @cyb. Basically, they believe that those who push conflict are those who wish to defend their position within the hierarchy, if not, they would all be radicals and revolutionaries against the system.

    4. Let me address the last part: the system. One thing you learn over time dealing with intersectionalist and postmodernists, is that they are mostly just non-profit lobbyists in denial. Yes, they are against injustice and want things to change, but they are often terrified of implementing systems or suggesting wholistic solutions that address the issues of a whole society or implementing solutions where interest groups can address their conflicts. In other words, all they really know is the outcome they want – even if to get it, they must amount to irrational and contradictory means to do so. Going back to Crenshaw, she wanted black women’s unique struggle against racism and sexism to be recognized, but she lacked the interest or the intellectual imagination to come up with a legal or political framework, where that could be universally applied to the whole nation, which is why the modern intersectional movement, is so far removed from her control. She only gains credit, because of the terminology.

    5. Finally, modern feminism in the West, doesn’t concern itself with equality (it’s just a rhetorical term), which once again is a liberal concept: as in equality under the law. One of the great ironies of the intersectional feminists is their rather contempt for the law and the idea that such a concept of objectivity serves as it’s foundations (even Crenshaw has written several pieces rejecting the idea of objectivity). This once again reveals many of the flaws in the movement. Take for instance the fight that feminists are currently fighting against the Tech Industry, because that’s where all the money is, yet the lack of fiight for men, who are under-represented in Education, Psychology and Mental Health in the name of diversity. They don’t fight for these things or for equality universally, because once again, they are in it for power, as all lobbying groups fundamentally are. They don’t care about implementing or coming up with better systems, because they don’t want to be held responsible for the survival or maintenance of their society, they just want to win, without having any skin in the game, or being held accountable by the multitude.

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  6. If you want liberal feminists to accept a “diversity of ideas” that include Nazism and that non-rape sexual assaults are no big deal, you’d think you’d be able to suck it up a little bit and accept liberal feminism. This is the endless denial of liberal and centrist political arguments. Somebody has to be wrong but we should pretend we are in all some way correct. The black Klansman has just as much right to express his genocidal ideas as a white woman who wants maternal leave. The white socialist who thinks sexism is a result of capital owning the means of production is just as correct as the German woman who is suspicious of communism because her grandma was gang raped by Soviet liberators. All these people need to get together and talk it out. Sure.

    In reality you do not accept liberal feminism nor are you a feminist and these liberal feminists are not going to accept your ideas. The only people who are going to accept your ideas are other classical liberals who aren’t sexist and racist. Racist and sexist classical liberals do not agree with you and they would be happy to tell you. Your classical liberal ideology is no more inclusive or representative than anyone else’s ideology.

    Liberal feminists reject universalism because it is not really universal. Classical liberalism promises a world of equality and liberty amongst equals. Women, racial minorities and the disabled are not part of that group of equals. The underlying assumption of classical liberalism is that all white Christian men will be considered equal under the law. When classical liberal authors discuss “the human race” they are speaking specifically about white Christian men. The idea that women, children and slaves/racial minorities are part of the human race is a relatively new social idea.

    There is nothing unreasonable about protesting such a system. Just as there is nothing unreasonable about you wanting to have a different opinion than your peers.

    You talk a lot about recognizing marginalization in society. You’re not doing a lot for a marginalized person by having them sit down and discuss their natural inferiority with someone who does not share that struggle. Eventually I hope moderates will realize this.

    Put it like this: I’m a woman and a radical feminist. Most trans women are not going to want to have a dialogue with me about why I think “woman” is not an identity and that women and girls should not have to see penises in gender segregated spaces like pool locker rooms. They are going to be angered and offended (and so am I). They’re going to fume about my “cis privilege” and I’m going to fume about their “male privilege.” Nothing will be accomplished because neither of us can be moved from our positions. A trans woman is not going to suddenly agree that she can’t “identify” as a woman just because I said so. Nor am I going to concede to her that I am a woman because I “identify” as one.

    Just as you are entrenched in your version of politics, they are entrenched. We are all entrenched.

    Intersectionality is not about focusing on group identity as a lifestyle. It is a way to explain certain law, policy and social effects. It was coined to explain the result of an employer discrimination case where black women were being specifically excluded. The job roles had (white) women working in the office and blacks (men) doing heavy labor. In this schema there is a place for women and blacks but not for black women.

    You have taken this completely reasonable idea created by a black woman and twisted it so you can dismiss identitarians as unreasonable. I understand why, you disagree with and don’t like them. You will continue to dismiss, and so will they because that’s the nature of politics. You continually use the same language of identitarians (stating they have class privilege so their views aren’t valid) in order to dismiss identitarianism.

    Who cares what number of blacks or other groups consider themselves liberal? All blacks benefit by political liberalism. Same with feminism. It’s very chic to consider oneself “not a feminist” especially while enjoying the benefits of a traditional society destroyed by feminism. This has been the case (women loudly decrying feminism) since the beginning of feminism.

    It is telling of the success of feminism that you state women might say they are feminist even if they have no feminist ideology… they just believe women are equal to men! Dude that is a very specific ideology called feminism.

    If you believe in free speech and everyone having liberty then you tacitly accept and approve of everything these intersectional liberal feminists are doing, including excluding you and calling you a fascist.

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