From Jonah Goldberg at National Review, Obama’s Identity-Politics Warning Is Better Late than Never
Nevertheless, Obama is right. Identity politics is a fundamentally undemocratic phenomenon. It assumes that vast numbers of individual human beings can be reduced to the color of their skin, their gender, or their sexual orientation. Diversity among different “kinds” of people is celebrated everywhere, but intellectual, ideological, and political diversity among those groups is demonized. The idea that all I need to know about someone is the color of their skin — white or black — strips individuals of their individuality and their agency.
We act as if basic truths are untrue if the wrong messenger gives them voice.
I understand why some conservatives want to dismiss Obama’s statements. They only see the hypocrisy. But there’s a reason we say hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue. Hypocrisy is a good gauge of a person’s sincerity in defense of an ideal. It’s near-useless in gauging the merits of the ideal.