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The self-appointed champions of the oppressed menace the world.
Of several nearly infallible characteristics of Leftist intellectuals, none is perhaps more obvious as their unquestioned conviction that they alone are suited by nature to champion the cause of the oppressed, marginalized, and downtrodden. Society is filled with mostly grubby, ignorant, self-centered people; but the intellectual elites have been chosen by nature (there being no God, of course) to arrange society so that certain unfortunate classes and groups are protected and elevated.
In modern culture, this elevation is sexual (women, homosexuals, lesbians, transgenders, and the “non-binary”); racial (Black and Hispanic); and economic (poor and lower-middle classes). The majority of society, self-centered, greedy, and uncaring, have pushed these groups to the margin, and the urgent calling of Leftist intellectuals is to counter this unspeakable injustice. Indeed, Leftist intellectuals were the world’s first “social justice warriors.”
Not that the intellectual elite have spent much time empirically investigating the actual conditions of these individuals. Intellectuals are obviously gifted, and therefore intuitively know, without needing to verify, what’s best for society. Besides, taking the time to investigate the condition of individual women, or Blacks, or lesbians, or the poor is the only valid metric, and this move detracts from the grand program of Leftist intellectuals: assigning overarching identity — individuals gain meaning and significant only within a particular classification, for which individual needs and characteristics are secondary. The most important thing about women and blacks, for example, is not their particular life situation, but that they are inherently oppressed by males and whites, respectively.
What these and other oppressed groups need, in the language of Thomas Sowell, is “surrogate decision makers”: socially influential people leveraging their power to champion the downtrodden groups.
This is the role naturally filled by Leftist intellectuals.
This identitarianism leads the Leftist intellectual to sweeping criteria and dismissals: the bourgeoisie, white supremacy, toxic masculinity, heteronormativity, and so on.
The Leftist intellectuals are so intellectually gifted that they can afford to be lazy. Why work hard to figure out specific cases of oppression and marginalization (which no one denies) when you know all of these things beforehand? Leftist intellectuals don’t investigate; they assign praise and blame, and move on.
As long as the cultural fulcrums lionize Leftist intellectuals – I refer here to major media, most universities and colleges, leading foundations, Hollywood, and, increasingly, major sports and corporations — the West will be pestered by this arrogant, self-important, power-hungry pariah.
Yours for Christian intellectualism,
Founder & President, Center for Cultural Leadership
You can read my brief note “Political Pulpits” here.
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