Don’t miss this essay by the great Ayaan Hirsi Ali, explaining the only way to truly fight anti-human ideology:
DEI is indeed every bit as pernicious as Ms. Weiss says. Before a harmful ideological project such as DEI can be neutralized it must first be understood. Ms. Weiss has helped advance that goal.
It would be wonderful if the leaders of the nation's universities, newspapers, museums, philanthropies, medical schools, law schools, major corporations, high schools, elementary schools and other institutions would dismantle DEI on their own initiative when presented with a comprehensive critique along the lines of Ms. Weiss's. Unfortunately, that sort of thing happens only in Narnia.
In the real world, litigation to enforce laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin and other protected characteristics may be most effective at shutting down DEI. It is time to use the Kendi doctrine - "the only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination" - as a sword when the pursuit of equity and diversity violates antidiscrimination laws. Theories of compelled speech might prove effective in lawsuits against state entities such as local governments and public universities. What are compulsory equity statements if not ideological and political litmus tests? How do applicants fare when they refuse to comply?
Those who believe in the rule of law and our constitutional democracy should avoid engaging the fascist Stephen Miller’s America First Legal Foundation to represent them in the courtroom, however. They are a very dangerous exception to the adage that the enemy of one’s enemy is a friend.
Opponents of DEI should also keep well away from the sticky tar baby known as cultural Marxism. Individuals with axes to grind who have an insufficient grasp of a complicated piece of intellectual history have enlisted cultural Marxism as a weapon in their culture war against wokeness and its proponents. It is fertile ground for conspiracy theories to the effect that everything objectionable about progressive culture is part of a plan by Marxist overlords whose dark objectives include turning the populace into compliant sheep, gaining dictatorial control over all institutions, killing off part of the global population and making us all eat bugs. Or something.
The reason not to lead with cultural Marxism is some of its notable critics will alienate the left-of-center constituency without whose support DEI cannot be undone legislatively. "Left of center" does not mean the Democratic Socialists of America. They're independents, moderate Democrats and others outside the MAGAverse who are not DEI true believers. Appeals to reason and emotions can influence them provided they come from a source they consider credible.
The most nuanced and sophisticated analysis of cultural Marxism I have come across in a sea of partisan publications is Russell Blackford's 2015 two-parter in The Conversation titled: "Cultural Marxism and our current culture wars." https://theconversation.com/cultural-marxism-and-our-current-culture-wars-part-1-45299
Professor Blackwell is currently a Conjoint Senior Lecturer in the School of Humanities, Creative Industries and Social Sciences at the University of Newcastle in Australia.
He says about himself:
"I am trained as a philosopher, legal scholar, and literary critic. I specialize in legal and political philosophy, and in philosophical bioethics. My wider interests include moral philosophy more generally, as well as aspects of philosophy of religion, philosophy of science, and metaphilosophy."
"I am a prolific, widely published essayist and commentator. In 2017 I won the AAP [Australasian Association of Philosophy] Media Prize for my contributions to public philosophy in Australia. In 2014, I was inducted as a Laureate of the International Academy of Humanism."
"In the past, I have held senior public policy appointments (for which I have an entry in Who's Who in Australia), and I have practised law with a major commercial firm in Melbourne."
"I have also had some professional success as a science fiction and fantasy author, including an original trilogy of novels (Terminator 2: The New John Connor Chronicles) written for the Terminator franchise (published 2002-2003) and many short stories."
More relevant to this endeavor is this part of Blackwell's analysis of the thing called cultural Marxism:
"Scholars such as Schroyer and Dennis Dworkin do not, however, suggest that the Frankfurt School or other 'cultural Marxists' ever had a plan to destroy the moral fibre of Western civilization, or to use their critique of culture as a springboard to a totalitarian regime. That would be difficult to argue in all seriousness because Western 'cultural Marxists' going back to the 1920s have typically been hostile to state power, social oppression of the individual, and Soviet Marxism itself. Moreover, they have shown considerable variation among themselves in their attitudes to specific social, moral, and cultural issues. There is no cultural Marxist master plan."
"More generally, serious intellectual history cannot ignore the complex cross-currents of thought within the Left in Western liberal democracies. The Left has always been riven with factionalism, not least in recent decades, and it now houses diverse attitudes to almost any imaginable aspect of culture (as well as to traditional economic issues). Many components of the Western cultural Left can only be understood when seen as (in part) reactions to other such components, while being deeply influenced by Western Marxism’s widespread criticism and rejection of Soviet communism."
"In the upshot, all the talk of cultural Marxism from figures on the (far) Right of politics is of little aid to understanding our current cultural and political situation. At best, this conception of cultural Marxism is too blunt an intellectual instrument to be useful for analysing current trends. At its worst, it mixes wild conspiracy theorizing with self-righteous moralism."