All we are saying, or at least what Robert Stacy McCain is saying, is give atavistic xenophobia a chance:
Except for straight, white, Protestant males, the only path to authentic identity under the multicultural regime is to separate yourself from the mainstream and strike a pose of alienated grievance. You’re only an authentic woman if you’re a militant feminist, and you’re only an authentic Latino if you’re marching with MALDEF.
Because such a posture only makes sense in the context of oppression and victimhood, everybody walks around with their insensitivity-detectors set to “stun,” prepared to blast anyone suspected of less-than-perfect tolerance. If it weren’t for racism, sexism and homophobia, the identity-politics lobbies wouldn’t have a fundraising raison d’etre, so they have a vested interest in magnifying every grievance.
“Tolerance,” incidentally, used to mean the ability to stand pain (from the Latin tolerare, to endure), or the range of acceptable deviation in a piece being machined. Its least-useful connotation, though, is not in this particular realm, but where it’s buckled behind the quantity “zero,” invariably found attached to an institution that honors buzzwords over brains.
This is, incidentally, not to deny the existence of actual grievances; were every last one of them immediately resolved, however, a lot of people would be out of work.
This mau-mau attitude actually causes more problems than it solves. The activist types who acquire money and influence by exaggerating evidence of “oppression” don’t really give a damn about the people they claim to represent. CAIR isn’t about the average Muslim any more than the National Council of Churches is about the average Methodist or the AFL-CIO is about the average blue-collar worker. The identity-politics professionals are merely exploiting the collective groups they claim to represent.
Not to mention the fact that anyone who tried to speak for the Syrian-Lebanese/Mexican/Scots-Irish likes of me would have to be wearing more hats than Bartholomew Cubbins.
And speaking of hats, a tip of the nearest one to Tom Wolfe, for putting “mau-mau” into the vernacular.