The Battle in Identity Politics
Know the controversy that challenges our homogeneity
Is there truly unity in diversity? The universally sought equality against interests and perspectives of social organizations with which people identify has shaped the notion of what it means to be human. As society does not seek the unfair experiences that hew its identities, it seeks identities in the wake of collective cognitive discrepancies. These right-wing propositions cultivated mostly on cultural upbringings and religious doctrines posit on false premises about different identity groups that self-aggrandize superiority against race, class, religion, gender, ethnicity, ideology, nation, sexual orientation, culture, information preference, history, musical or literary preference, medical conditions, professions, or even hobbies.
Dominant — being the more autonomous — social groups have primarily imposed a criteria over “what should be” and based governance on an established set of ideologies that are unjustifiably strict and have increasingly produced partisans. These beliefs, jumbled as prevalent communal issues, have been kept and nurtured over traditions. They have been conditioned to doctrines, as opposed to secularism. Several movements to promote awareness and equality have been established to firefight the rudiments of these views, as they wallow the minds and hearts of the elite-formed social hierarchy. In backward politics, they revolutionize their people against deviant figures in order to familiarize and educate based on emotional and even moral implications from these identities.
Widely kept in tradition, the social family mores in Asian nations have implied a monarchic perspective in dealing with societal cognition and decision-making. Fixed marriages have long been a standard for Filipino-Chinese communities, and failure to comply to this setup would mean a disgrace to (their) future generation. In addition, there is a transgressive notion of beauty based on complexion. As dictated by the yellow race in Asia — the Chinese, the Japanese, the Taiwanese, the Koreans, the Singaporeans — who has the buying power and dominant influence over the brown race, those with white complexion are considered superior to the brown-skinned Asians — the Thai, the Filipinos, the Indonesians, the Malaysians, the Indians.
In light of that kind of governance, there is also an oligarchy that has been the norm centuries back, but fragments of its ideologies have branches that have been preserved in the more conservative nations we have. These communities have had the richest colonial intervention and cultural-ethnic preservation in their history. The upbringing of their youth can attest to the paradigms that have been considered and invested in for that goal of mutual cooperation—one that looks into social equality, contrary to bigotry. Taking out figures of economic development, the government and cultural entities are still unbiasedly correlated.
As identity politics hinders the freedom of speech, the art of explanation seems not anymore a challenge in a debate, whether in a political, religious or cultural discourse. The identity groups and their conscientious supporters cannot fully extend their fight for justice and comfort in the limelight, as people have been singlehandedly exposed to prejudice and to the mantra that the majority wins. They do not aim to stress the importance of not assuming an already existing identity, but of remaking and unmaking identities through advocacies. The optimal means to connive intolerances of what should not be is dependent on lawful measures: an official recognition, discerned from authority figures, with promulgations that speak of understanding and formality — in non-obstinate ideologies or in pro-humanitarian rights.
The pope, for example, is the head of the Catholic church whom Catholics obey in layman’s terms. The beliefs that dictate laws, protocols and rituals, and mantras to live by for “God’s glory” is dependent on his proclamation, for tradition tells us that he has been credited with papal infallibility. Democratic voting procedure is observed, wherein majority of bishops’ votes is considered in order for religious bills to be fully accepted, recognized and thereby implemented across the church. However, despite the current pope being more open-minded and considerate than his predecessors, many of the church’s stakeholders are still edging out on some of his generic and abstract statements. Similar to the Holy Bible, his excerpts and citations are still expressed in scriptural terms, not lucid enough to serve as “prima facie evidence.” Due to this, there is still a constant battle of faith for total open-mindedness against the bishops’ recognition on the morality clause — still a subjective variable for debate — of these certain identity groups’ activities. Many non-believers continue to bash over these oppressed views, carefully proselytizing believers to either shift into another religion or to hold rallies and/or continuously send petition letters to the pope.
In minority groups that are socially exposed to violence, there is a constant battle for this proselytization. The adversity it has caused has resulted in psychological and mental distress, as eminently experienced in behaviorally-challenged groups (i.e., those who have developed depression-related syndromes, that have either ensued in isolation and rebellion from society or suicide attempts).
People seek the approval from authority (police officers, government officials, religious figures, professionals, etc.) for most believe that they lack the comprehension and/or cannot depend on their own gut. Our generation has ingested in a destructive protean mentality. We have had the educational system and other forms of systemization in society that also have resulted in societal categorization that accounts for separations between well-known differences and stereotypes. This permeated the belief that authoritarianism is impeccable, being a significant factor in why we seek for conformity and approval before we act. But looking at freewill, being deeply aware of human rights and exercising epistemology based on own experiences not on claims, should unite us all, despite our multitude biological and cultural mutations.
Thus, identity politics does exist in the different spectrums of society. When are we going to stop adhering to orthodoxical practices—just because they’re passed on—and start being more open-minded—based on what’s best for us with our life?
About The Author: Josh L. Doman discovered his devotion to writing after serving as a journalist then managing editor for his college’s official school paper and publications. His father, an investor, engineer, and scholar who authored a book in theology and spirituality; inspired his writings to delve on the moralistic, ethical, and inspirational implications of living in the present times. Publications are reflection of anecdotal encounters in entrepreneurship, fitness, and the military; and accrued readings about behavioral economics, self-help, and spirituality.