The Fallacy of Identity Logic in Liberalism
Tuesday, July 7, 2009 at 1:16PM
Sean Wilson in e-mail discussion, identity politics, politicology

(sent to lawcourts)
... I think it would be more incoherent to argue "two wrongs" or to argue from idolatry.

Besides, as long as we are talking coherency in belief,  I think it would be more helpful to ask ourselves a couple of questions: (a) what is ideology; and (b) why doesn't the bottom paragraph qualify as one? It seems to me that groups who argue for a group-access policy fundamentally offer a charged belief system. And that if this issue were ever properly inspected -- you know, like we do all hegemony in the academy (cough, cough) -- that we might find that there are more unitary tasks and attributes present in all of us, and that we should find those tasks by looking inside of people and not at their shells. 

For any attribute you find that "women" have, I'm sure you will find it in various formats in all sorts of men, as is the case in reverse. One of the most ridiculous things about this sort of team logic is what it does to people like me. There are literally hoards of people who get thrown into "power groups" when they have nothing to do with the stereotypes of those groups -- just as people purporting to be for "women" very often have traits and beliefs nothing like those for whom they claim to speak. Just as ecological fallacy is a fallacy about averages in statistics, so too is this group-politics rhetoric. 

We need to teach people that they get selected because of traits, not appearances. And if "experiences" count, they have to be delineated rather than just assumed to accompany a chromosome. And once we delineate them, we are going to find that some Appalachian males have them too, as do gay males, as do Iraq war veterans.

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