I came across this meme again. It is not new but not too old either. Transgenderism was not an in thing ten years ago. I dismissed the meme a few times, but now I commented when I saw it in a Facebook post. I asked a simple question:
“How and why should any of these circumstances influence how we vote?” The reply was disappointing:
“Any. All, in an even better case. Empathy based on knowledge forms the “volonté” of choosing.”.
Not an answer to my question but since the question is important, let me elaborate.
I get the idea, I really do. I should understand that voting is not about me and what I want, that I should consider the needs of the …..well, needy, and appreciate the wonderful things big daddy government is doing for us. It is stupid, but I get it.
What I don’t get, is the patronizing condescension behind them.
What I don’t get, is the assumption, that if I ‘voted as if……’, then we, the poster and I, would vote the same way. That empathy based on personal experience will shine the light on the righteous path. That it will give me the ‘volonté’ to act the right way.
But regardless of how I feel, how much I can understand or empathize, my actual judgement and voting position can go either of three ways: progressive, conservative or neutral, meaning that I can take a position saying that the issue does not or should not have anything to do with politics.
Let me illustrate.
How should I vote
….if my skin is not white?
How indeed? And what skin color should I imagine? Black? Brown? Yellow? Black Americans are supposed to benefit from affirmative action, while Orientals are clearly disadvantaged by it to the point that there are constitutional challenges against affirmative action. MLK was dreaming of a colorblind world. In what way could the needs, desires and aspirations of a person with a different skin color be different from mine? Isn’t the assumption the very basis of racism? The creator of this meme clearly wants to bring back segregation, the racist world where people are treated differently based on their skin color. She wants me to have this racist consideration in my vote.
But here is a real voting issue: public education in the US is a disaster. One third of eight graders are functional illiterates. Black students are the most victimized in the system run by unionized teachers. The greatest demand for charter schools and voucher systems is in the black middle-class.
I am fully supportive of their demands. I would also outlaw affirmative action that is doing a lot more harm than good.
I could give you similar arguments about crime and single parent families. The democrats, the racist party in the US, are at this point responsible for most of the problems of the black community. Blacks fare far worse in democrat run cities than elsewhere. On the basis of these facts alone, all decent people should vote republican.
….if my parents need medical care?
How are the medical needs of my parents different from mine or my children’s?
In Canada, where I live, I have to wait months before I can see a specialist, in some cases I may die waiting, because in Canada it is illegal to seek medical treatment outside the communist healthcare system. How should I vote on that? The issue is too complex to discuss here in detail, but I can assure you that my vote will not be in the communist direction. The Canadian health care system cannot be any more communist than it is already. The socialists in the US want to use it as a model for their single payer system. Based on these facts, decent people should vote republican.
….if my spouse is an immigrant?
I am an immigrant. My spouse is an immigrant. What does that have to do with anything?
Apart, of course, of the fact that in the minds of the left we are supposed to consider ourselves part of a homogeneous voting block in grateful acceptance of their condescending paternalism. We are expected to show our gratitude by accepting their guidance and giving them our trust to manage our lives. I wonder how should I vote on that insult? Left or right?
….if my land is on fire?
This is actually a good question. As Randal O’Tool explains in his book “The Best Laid Plans” misguided, ideology driven policies are responsible for most forest fires in America. The answer: vote for less government. I will definitely not vote for a carbon tax which would do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about the fires.
….if my child is transgender?
This very issue is an entirely artificial creation. If a time machine would bring us someone from only 20 years ago, he would have no idea what we are talking about. The transgender is just the latest entrant into the cultural Marxist most oppressed victims Olympics. The suggestion that what they need is politics rather than care and personal support from friends and family is revolting. How do I vote on that?
(Some more thoughts on this matter can be found here.)
….my house is flooded?
Before I start thinking of voting, I would call my insurance agent and buy a sump pump. Build a dike around the house. Do the things that people who own a house usually and actually do. Once I had a chance to assess the damage, I will start thinking of politics, because from that point, it will be all politics.
I would ask what happened to my tax dollars. The ones I paid to protect my house from the floods.
I highly recommend to listen to Lew Rockwell’s speech on hurricane Katrina which clearly describes what is the cause of such disasters.
….my sister is a victim of gun violence?
As opposed to what? Fist violence? Knife violence? Hand grenade violence? Baseball bat violence?
What is so special about gun violence? Isn’t a vote against gun violence a vote for knife or baseball bat violence? Evidence (from the UK and Australia) seems to show that it is.
If my sister becomes a victim of gun violence, I would buy her a gun and some training to defend herself and would take a firm political position to protect her right to own, carry and use that gun for self defense.
….my brother is gay?
How indeed? Where is the need for compassion and empathy? Isn’t it something we should all be proud of? How should I vote on pride and why do I have the sneaking suspicion that in this instance being gay is supposed to make him part of some sort of victim group that does need our compassion and empathy?
Should being gay be the source of pride or anxiety? Isn’t the issue behind us already?
If my brother is gay, am I supposed to agree with him on every one of his political ideas? The whole gay political agenda? If both of my brothers are gay and vehemently disagree on gay politics, where does that leave me? With or without my empathy. I my empathize with both, but how should I vote?
I also have a better question: How should I vote if my brother is an incel? One of my brothers actually was, even if he never called himself so. Shouldn’t empathy with him mean that I should vote aggressively against any manifestation of the radical feminist agenda that created these involuntary celibates?
….my water is unsafe?
You mean how should I vote if the government pissed away my tax dollars that I paid to provide me with clear water on transgender bathrooms, sensitivity training and financing environmental protest marches?
Yeah, I get the points. I should vote for politicians who will do exactly what they are supposed to and nothing more!
In some other variants of the meme there are some other points, we might as well go through them as well:
….my neighbour is buried in student debt
How is that even possible? The world needs an almost endless supply of engineers, programmers, biologists, physicists. How can they be buried in debt?
Oh, we are talking about the gender studies and other useless-studies and loser-studies majors! Why should we empathize with the stupidity of the people who borrowed money to get a useless education?
And why should we vote to encourage more of it?
I would, without hesitation vote for initiatives to remove government from higher education altogether. Completely. Totally. Absolutely. No financial support to universities nor students. No loan guaranties.
The problem would go away immediately. But I doubt that this what the author of the meme had in mind.
….my daughter is a sexual assault survivor
We already have the police to take care of that don’t we? If I, with all my empathy and righteous anger go after the assailant, I would be arrested and go to jail. With a much higher probability I must add, than the assailant. The urge to take revenge would be the proper emphatic response, but would it really be the right thing to do?
How would my vote in a political election change this scenario??
How could my vote do more than the emotional support and help I can give to my daughter?
And what should I vote for? More of the incompetent police that was not there to save her in the first place? For an even more bloated and ineffective justice system?
I could add a whole lot more “vote as ifs” on my own just to show the absurdity.
How should I vote if my cousin is a midget? Or 7’6” tall? How should I vote if I was blind? What if I had full use of only one of my eyes? How should that ‘disability’ influence my vote? I don’t have to empathize, I don’t have to imagine, I live with it. But I still don’t know what on earth does it have to do with politics.
Having all that said, my biggest puzzle, the one repeated back to me as an answer to my question, is the last sentence. “Because privilege has no place in an election, but empathy does” Pardon my French, but what the F*CK does that mean? A privilege is a special right, but the neo-communists redefined it to mean: “unearned access to social power based on membership in a dominant social group”. And now I could repeat my crass question seeking meaning.
The original meaning is specific. The cultural Marxist one is a mush. Since just about anything can be read into it, it is meaningless. Just like the whole meme we are talking about. Just like the totalitarian concept of Rousseau’s ‘volonté general’.
The meme, in the end is nothing but a post-modernist “check your privilege” exercise. A test to see whether you belong. Whether you accept the “volonté general” which divides the world into neat little victim groups which you should feel for but never really think about. Victim groups that should be taken care of by somebody else, not by you. Your duty is not to take personal responsibility and do something about the problems but to vote the right way.
This is an NPC test where you have to prove that you belong with the herd and do what you are expected to do: FEELING, not thinking.
In this barren world of the new left, political tribalism and conformity are all that matter. Thinking is not welcome.
Politics should be about ideas, principles, but above all, practical policies which should be evaluated not by the intentions behind them but by looking at the results they produce.
For the neo-coms, none of that matters. Only the ‘general will’ and the POWER to implement it does.
Sheep mentality and lazy, stupid virtue signaling does not impress me.