Sneaky businessman Executive Self Dealing

Scott Shepard: Frustrate the New Discrimination With National Declaration Day

Conservatives have for some time taken to quoting Saul Alinsky that would-be reformers should “[m]ake the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” Often the quote is deployed in tandem with frustration at how hard it is to do that when the hard left holds so many of the levers of power and expression, and has abandoned objectivity and fair play.

Scott Shepard

Scott Shepard

I suspect that Alinsky’s response to that, so long as he didn’t know that his addressee was not a leftist, would be to buck yourself us and get to work. The difficulty – and the skill – lies in trying to force the enemy to live up to its own rules when it’s trying very hard not to.

With that in mind, here’s a plan to defeat equity-based discrimination by playing by the rules of the discriminators:

Let’s all declare ourselves – preferably on the same day to underscore the point, but really whenever – non-binary, queer and other-raced. Their grand plans for systemic discrimination won’t be able to survive it.

It has been well-discussed, in these pages and elsewhere, that the push for equity is an explicit push for discrimination on the basis of race, sex and orientation until uniformities of outcome are reached (except for the global overclass) without regard to constitutional or legal considerations. As thoroughly discussed have been the trends of proliferating addenda to being gay and the ever-expanding list of ersatz sexes. The people who push equity-based discrimination have also fully embraced these self-generated and readily adjustable identification categories to which due attention and deference must always be paid, regardless of the consequences for others.

These doctrines and demands are so interlocked in the woke worldview that when companies or organizations push for equity-based discrimination, they find themselves obliged to discriminate according to how people identify themselves rather than by their objective characteristics, far less their individual qualifications and merit. This is where the opportunity arises to play by Alinsky’s rule.

Let’s pick a day – I like April 2nd, to underscore that this is a direct response to the machinations of fools – to be National Declaration Day. On that day, we all do whatever paperwork is necessary with our employers to label ourselves non-binary, queer and of “other” race. Then we can largely forget about it and go about our business, but we will have sabotaged their attempts at equity-based discrimination of either the overt or covert kind.

Note that none of these declarations would in any way be false – for anyone. Non-binary, as a sex, doesn’t mean anything at all, so it can’t be false to claim to be it. In the classic formulation, something like, “I can hang drywall and hit a line drive to the warning track, but I like The Crown,” is surely enough to qualify: your identity is yours, damnit. But these days, you’re a sexist for thinking that those things signify anything. And you’re also sexist if you think that it doesn’t signify anything if some men declare themselves to be not-men because they like things or feel things in ways different than how they assert that (other? most? “real?”) men like or feel them.

So what the hell: non-binary for everyone.

Ditto “queer.” As part of the sexual-orientation alphabet soup, queer means something – anything, really – other than the standard categories of gay, lesbian or bisexual. According to disgraced former Governor Andrew Cuomo’s daughter and the Human Rights Campaign, people can qualify as queer merely by “only feel[ing] sexually attracted to someone [with whom] they have an emotional bond.” Well, if that qualifies, so does absolutely anything else.

Identify something you find sexy or romantic or off-putting or about which you are neutral, feel unique about it, and do not bother to check whether you really are unique; again, this is your special identity.

There you go. Now you’re queer.

As for being categorized as “other” race/ethnicity: once again, you do you. In Europe, each nationality is called a race, so that it’s racist for the English to make fun of the French (and the Associated Press appears to think it’s racist even to refer to “the French”). In the U.S., there were traditionally three races, but once Hispanic, and now even MENA (middle eastern or north African) are added as options in an expanded race/ethnicity category, no other option can be excluded. Hispanic means “descended in part from some kinds of Europeans.” Anyone then qualifies to having a special “other” race/ethnicity either under that specific sentence or by substituting the name of a different continent. It’s kind of rude that they don’t have a special box for your unique variety of race/ethnicity, but that doesn’t mean you have to submit to their unsafe and tyrannizing categories.

Other it is, then.

Once you make those declarations, all sorts of opportunities will open up. You’ll have the chance to join the queer affinity group. If everyone does so on the same day, that next meeting should be fascinating – and I’m guessing that the “demands” that group makes will change pretty radically. Then set up affinity groups for other races and for non-binary employees. At last, you’ll get to have an affinity group too, and can have long talks with management about the need to, oh, I don’t know, treat people like unique human beings rather than avatars of increasingly incoherent groupings.

The real equity warriors at the company will want to object. The central purpose of equity, after all, is to discriminate against whites, men, and straight people, and suddenly there won’t be any of those left to discriminate against. But there won’t be anything they can do about it. If they try to dig deeper into your self-identifications, first ask them if they’re challenging everyone’s, and by what systematic process. There’s no way for them to respond. If they’re focusing on you because “you don’t act queer/non-binary,” or “you don’t look ‘other,’” then they’re openly and unquestionably discriminating on the basis of race and sex. But if they start questioning everyone’s claims, then they’ll have undermined the lunatic edifice that they’ve built for themselves (and they’ll also then immediately have to try to reconstruct it to keep the radical self-identifiers happy). After all, once you’ve given the radicals the keys to the company, as, say, Disney has done to the Kingdom, you can’t very well stand up to them later.

Meanwhile, if the companies start making up new loopholes – if, for instance, suddenly non-binary or queer don’t count as diverse categories – then the lawsuits nearly file and decide themselves: some people’s presentation of their sexualities and genders are accepted, but others are challenged, because of their relationship to outdated and restrictive stereotypes? Find the fainting couch!

But also, per Alinsky, consider continuing the strategy with slight changes. Any Irish blood? Declare yourself “Other/Hibernic,” write it in under Hispanic, and then demand an affinity group, a diversity categorization, and an explanation about why historical discrimination against Irish people doesn’t matter. There’s no non-racist (and non-insane) response that can be made. Ditto with the other categories: make your group-category more specific and then loudly demand that your special little niche get all the privileges that apply to every other plea for endless attention and special privileges.

And with that, I leave you with another of one Alinky’s miserable rules: “the real action is in the enemy’s reaction.”

Equity and self-identification theory can’t be made to work together, but they can’t be sundered at this point without knocking down the whole miserable woke edifice. Wouldn’t that be a shame?


Scott Shepard is a fellow at the National Center for Public Policy Research and Director of its Free Enterprise Project. This was originally published at RealClearMarkets.

The National Center for Public Policy Research is a communications and research foundation supportive of a strong national defense and dedicated to providing free market solutions to today’s public policy problems. We believe that the principles of a free market, individual liberty and personal responsibility provide the greatest hope for meeting the challenges facing America in the 21st century.