Resentment, Multiculturalism and Identity Politics

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By David Eaton

david_eatonDuring the post-World War II era the influence of multiculturalism and identity politics in the West became a pervasive and potent force in politics, academia, sociology, and culture. So-called “social justice warriors” (SJWs) have taken activism on a variety of issues — race, gender, ethnicity, sexual preferences — to such extremes that it is near impossible to engage in reasoned debate or discussion without finding oneself mired in invective-laden exchanges drenched in political correctness.

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy explains that the term “identity politics”

“…has come to signify a wide range of political activity and theorizing founded in the shared experiences of injustice of members of certain social groups. Rather than organizing solely around belief systems, programmatic manifestos, or party affiliation, identity political formations typically aim to secure the political freedom of a specific constituency marginalized within its larger context. Members of that constituency assert or reclaim ways of understanding their distinctiveness that challenge dominant oppressive characterizations, with the goal of greater self-determination.”

There is an emphasis on the need for various social groups to use political means to attain social justice — justice not necessarily based on principle or universal truths, but rather on “political formulations” or an affiliation with a particular political party that will legislate according to a specific set of concerns. Current iterations of multiculturalism and identity politics can be traced to Marxism and the Cold War, particularly the Marxist ideological tenets of the Institute for Social Research at Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany, known as the Frankfurt School.

As the Industrial Revolution led to the emergence of a substantial upwardly mobile middle class, the issue of economic disparity between rich and poor — a main Marxist premise — began to dissipate, hence the revolutionary urges exploited by earlier Marxist revolutionaries were mitigated.

The Marxist-Hegelian nostrum of progress-through-conflict needed new victims with old resentments to foster the revolutionary impulses that would theoretically bring about the Marxist utopia. Resentments based on racial, gender, ethnic or sexual preference slights were seen as the new markers though which progressive Marxism could be advanced. The old Marxist meme of “haves and have nots” was replaced with the new neo-Marxist narrative of “oppressor and oppressed.”

Teaching at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1950, neo-Marxist (and Frankfurt School alumnus) Theodor Adorno co-authored his highly influential book, The Authoritarian Personality, in which he argued that any attempt to thwart progressivism (which for him was sociology with Marxist bent) was an expression of authoritarianism; fascist, in fact. Adorno identified the new “victims” in need of social justice as those groups who had been exploited by rich, white males of European (Christian) descent — people of color, women, homosexuals, and those in the third world.

For Adorno, Herbert Marcuse and other Frankfurt School philosophers ensconced in American liberal arts universities, fostering resentment among these disenfranchised groups was the new methodology used to produce the ideological opiate necessary to hook the masses on anti-establishment sentiment. Resentment, rage and rebellion became weaponized in the name of social justice. The culture war we are experiencing is the result of this resentment-based rationale and progressives consider identity politics a viable way to win the political battles necessary to advance the neo-Marxist agenda.

Moreover, there has been a categorical attempt to justify the silencing of any opposition to the Frankfurt School academics and their resentment-based ideology. In his 1965 essay, “Repressive Tolerance,” dedicated to his Brandeis University students, Marcuse proffered: “The function and value of tolerance depend on the equality prevalent in the society in which tolerance is practiced.” As he put it, “what is proclaimed and practiced as tolerance today, is in many of its most effective manifestations serving the cause of oppression.”

The outcome of Marcuse’s ideology was “tolerance for movements from the left, but intolerance for movements from the right.” Because the right was always seen by the left as protecting its nefarious self-interests, attacking the status quo, whether it has beneficial aspects or not, is justified — called for, in fact.

With resentment-based ideology flourishing in academia, a greater emphasis on multiculturalism vis-à-vis the denigration of the West’s Judeo-Christian heritage has become a serious concern. As music historian Charles Rosen observes, one of the “unsavory” aspects of contemporary sociological criticism of this sort is that “commonly shared and recognized values can be dismissed since these values are simply a successful imposition by an elite upon society as a whole.”

At face value, the idea of “leveling” and removing “judgment” from discussions about culture and social behavior may seem to be a move toward altruism, equality and justice, but something more pernicious is at work. Multiculturalism has metastasized into a crusade with decidedly “politically-correct” conceits. Political correctness now clouds any attempt at arriving at a reasoned, objective outlook, especially the values of the West born of the Judeo-Christian religious sphere. In fact, this rationale has become a cudgel to curtail and delegitimize any thought and expressions not in step with multiculturalist orthodoxy.
In our postmodern era, multiculturalism, while professing equality, actually has become hostile to various traditions. As Rosen notes:

“We owe to various versions of political correctness an improvement in the status of women and minorities…and a more serious examination of the aspirations of classes with little political power. There are benefits from multiculturalism, too, but when combined with political correctness, it has produced the absurd thesis that all cultures are equally valid or valuable, the consistent denigration of Western civilization, and the attempts to suppress any critical examination of non-Western societies.”

Not all cultural spheres are equal in terms of civil liberties, and though all civilizations have cultural expressions, not all cultural expressions rise to the same level of accomplishment or expertise. Even within a particular cultural sphere there are various levels of accomplishment and expertise (e.g., Ludwig van Beethoven was a better composer than Ludwig Spohr). Still, according to the current iteration of politically correct multiculturalism, making this distinction would likely result in a rebuke by those who advocate Marcuse’s “Repressive Tolerance” ideology.

Stanford University’s Francis Fukuyama discusses identity politics and its role in the world (recorded in January 2017).

Finding Remedies
Finding political remedies for various iterations of social injustice lies at the heart of the identity politics equation. This begs several questions: To what degree should government be utilized to create condition of fairness and justice given the diversity of circumstances that may exist in a particular group? Perhaps more importantly, can there be solutions to injustice apart from “belief systems” or principles upon which decisions about fairness can be efficaciously rendered while assuaging historical resentments?

Divine Principle instructs in Chapter 2 (the course and motivation of the Human Fall) Lucifer’s rebellion was predicated on his jealousy towards Adam and Eve’s unique relationship with God. Lucifer misconstrued that relationship seeing it as a slight and the emotions produced by this alleged “lack-of-love” were a kind of “micro-aggression” (in contemporary parlance) that led to a macro-aggression — a rebellion against God through the seduction of Eve.

The 1973 English edition of Divine Principle (pp. 89-90) states that jealousy “is a by-product of love,” like a shadow produced when light shines on a particular object. It is a natural human reaction; neither good nor bad. The issue becomes how we react when these feelings occur. By allowing jealousy to fester into resentment and rage, we undermine the necessary process of developing productive and loving relationships. When we process our emotions in accordance with the principle we avoid being ensnared in the resentment trap.

Any attempt to ameliorate historical antagonisms will require a “belief system” based on principles that mitigate the urge to rebel and retaliate. Everyone has individual choice; a First Blessing modality in which we endeavor to do the right thing based on the godly attributes of filial heart, living for the higher purpose, loving one’s enemy and other godly virtues. In this regard, the importance of personal choice cannot be underestimated. With a better understanding of how our actions will affect us in this life and the afterlife, we can begin the process of mitigating resentments according to The Principle.

The U.S. Constitution guarantees individual liberties, but stops short of collective rights because of the potential infringement on individual liberties — no small matter to the founders. Moreover, it was important to the founders that religious freedom was an enshrined, guaranteed right as a necessary aspect for a society to have the proper moral and ethical standards on which to base its laws and prescriptions for fairness and justice.

In our politically correct society, one now increasingly dominated by identity politics and radical multiculturalism, making critical distinctions based on principle and belief systems that are in accord with the spirit of the Constitution have become antipodal to realizing genuine democratic ideals. Columnist David Harsanyi writes, “…few things are more unintellectual, irrational, or un-American than demanding that people comport their political worldviews to their skin color, sex, or ethnicity.”

The resentment-based rhetoric and actions being promulgated by those seeking to attain social justice run afoul of the Constitution and Divine Principle. Channeling our emotions into a productive and loving modality requires a belief system that embodies the aforementioned attributes of filial heart, living for the higher purpose and creating conditions for natural surrender. Multiculturalism that is tainted by resentment, political correctness and identity politics can never get us to that better place.♦

David Eaton has been Music Director of the New York City Symphony since 1985. In addition to his conducting career, he has been an active composer, arranger and producer with 55 original compositions and over 700 arrangements and transcriptions to his credit. His most recent orchestral composition, “70 and Counting!”, was performed at the United Nations as part of its 70th Anniversary concert in 2015. In 2016, he was awarded an honorary doctorate by UTS.

31 thoughts on “Resentment, Multiculturalism and Identity Politics

  1. Very nice essay, David. Question: I would posit that, in relation to our movement’s previous philosophical and practical commitment to “Victory over Communism,” what you have described as multiculturalism and identity politics, rooted in, among other places, the neo-Marxism of the Frankfurt School, has become the new communism. And that, as was the case with VOC, this does not mean we endorse Christian-democratic-capitalism as the answer, nor that we reject the visionary idealism of the Left for a perfect world, nor some elements of its critique. What would be your view on that? And what would be a “head-wing” position?

    • The UC movement does not have a monolithic stand on these political issues. Therefore, it is inappropriate to say “we.” For me, the issues of Constitutionalism and separation of powers are very important to American politics. Many Americans (including myself) advocate states’ rights over government overreach and tyranny as the foundation stated in the American Constitution. Achieving the ideals of a good society can be compatible with aspects of Christian democratic capitalism. It is the role of the church and non-government entities to develop principled advocacy for the development of character, family and responsibility for community problem-solving and implementation of social activism and programs. That is why our own movement needs to improve Tribal Messiah outreach and include service to community programs and character education. In my opinion, a headwing position should not endorse racial identity politics that dismantle any people of any color and fuel hatred and resentment as David indicated.

  2. Dr. Hendricks,

    As Father stated many times, the Headwing philosophy must be predicated on Godism. With Godism as the foundation, issues such as jealousy and resentment born of racial animosity, gender confusion, et. al., can be dealt with accordingly. Knowing the causal aspects of these various maladies from the view of The Principle can get us to the point where we can effectively diagnose, remedy and heal these problems. Religion has been eviscerated by the more progressive proponents of the new left; consequently they can only see conflict (in the Hegelian sense) as the way to social progress. Because politics is adversarial by nature, it has become the vehicle of choice for cultural Marxist advocates.

    What has become especially troubling is that any disagreement with progressive orthodoxy is not characterized as merely being wrong, but bad, immoral and deserving of rebuke and punitive measures. There seems to be no quarter for open debate and/or countervailing views. (Marcuse’s “Repressive Tolerance” in action).

    I cite the Constitution in the essay precisely because the founding fathers had a certain, though not complete, understanding of Godism vis-à-vis freedom. Freedom of religion was a salient point for them in crafting our founding document. Politics, education, the arts, economics, environmental concerns, etc., need to be guided by Godism; therefore freedom must be in the equation in order for us to be “co-creators” of a better society. The idea of a VOC-type mode of education would be a good first step in the process of taking on the challenge before us.

  3. My disconnect from David’s well-argued piece on identity politics is that it omits the many other strands of thought that make people on the Left tick, most glaringly the Civil Rights Movement and the biblically-rooted morality of those left-leaning Christians who believe that Jesus stood for the poor and the marginalized. It also doesn’t comprehend the standpoint of liberal Jews, who take the biblical prophets’ call for social justice seriously as an essential aspect of God’s covenant. These movements have a more powerful hold on the American conscience than the resentment of identity politics, in my opinion. So while there are certainly groups on the far left that push identity politics, for example in promoting gay rights, the reason what they advocate for finds rapid mainstream acceptance was because of civil rights and Christian notions of fairness to all.

    I recognize that on college campuses in particular, the calls of groups promoting identity politics are strong and strident. But I speak from my own experience relating to mature adults whom I know and respect, from my relatives and friends who vote Democratic. They are not full of the politics of resentment, nor are they pushing anyone’s identity agenda. They simply believe in an America that is big enough to welcome and give freedom to everyone, with the right to live as they see fit as long as they don’t endanger the welfare of others.

    While one can argue that identity politics exploits this fundamental American virtue for narrow group ends, I believe the wellsprings of the American virtues of tolerance and freedom that have informed the liberal center over the past 50 years deserve more attention than the ideologies of those who push extremist agendas. That is the reason I believe it is possible to restore wholeness to the American polity by reasoned discussion across party lines, without resorting to partisan name-calling and vilification.

  4. In the video above, Professor Fukuyama concludes: “…[D]emocracy should not be simply a collection of heterogeneous identity groups that are all competing against one another. Democracies need to see things in universal terms because democracy grants rights on a universal basis. They are based on a principle of fundamental human equality and citizens are supposed to approach politics as citizens who have to reason and comment about common problems that they face. This is something that at the end of 2016 has become more difficult to do because we’ve seen this fracturing of the American body politic — the growth of polarization and the growth of distrust across many groups in American society.”

  5. One of the biggest confusions that lie at the base of identity politics is the problem of negative rights vs. positive rights. Negative rights are those rights that enable you to function without interference, oppression, or harm from others. The U.S. Constitution was based on negative rights. Positive “rights,” like the right to equal income, food, housing, or education, fall in the category of an ideal or wish. Positive rights cannot be given by a state or a government, because they are contingent on economic production and the service of one person to another. The only thing a government can do is redistribute, but it can’t produce, and this is one area in which communism fails because the force of law does not produce economic goods or social recognition; they properly belong to the economic and cultural spheres.

    Everyone has an identity, and that identity is a personalized overlapping of all the things that make up a person: sex, size, color, religion, education, occupation, family experience, political affiliation, etc. As such, individual identities are real. Group identities are, by their very nature, stereotypes. No two people in a group have equal identities, only some overlapping identities. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides for freedom of association, which is a negative right: You can identify with, and freely associate with, others with whom you identify in any of the ways described above. However, when you ask the government to recognize the values or wants of a particular group and impose them on everyone else, you have what the founders called “establishment.” They were concerned about “establishment of religion,” but imposing the values of a political party, a racial group, or a type of family by government force creates structural oppression the same way.

    The real solution, and the founders recognized it, is to allow everyone to freely associate but allow no faction to worm its way into the political system and, use the power of law to coerce others to serve them. White male privilege was structured into the constitution with the 3/5 vote for slaves and votes only by male heads of households. However, those problems have been legally corrected with the Civil War Amendments, the Women’s Suffrage Act, and civil rights legislation in the 1960s. These were the achievement of negative rights. Much of the further demands of identity politics have actually been “positive rights,” which can’t be provided by government, but have to be provided by the economic and cultural spheres. Continuing to demand positive rights through identity politics fails to recognize that the things being sought come not from government, but through better education, hard work, personal responsibility, and other people who care enough about them to help them become self-sufficient.

  6. Thank you, David, for a reinvigorating appraisal of the current political divide.

    Today I encountered a Public Justice Review article by a Christian professor who addresses similar concerns. Well worth the read, with many comparisons to your article and to the stimulating comments above: “Flourishing in a Pluralist World.”

  7. Gordon Anderson hits on a point that F.A. Hayek, William F. Buckley, Jr., and Thomas Sowell have argued, namely, that there is too much diversity of circumstances in a given group to prescribe a government-based remedy that won’t infringe upon the rights of certain people within the group. Sowell asks: You want total fairness? OK, but at what cost of individual liberties (aka negative rights)? It’s an important question.

    To Dr. Wilson’s point: Herbert Croly, considered the father of modern liberalism and the founder of The New Republic, was opposed to the idea of using the resources for social engineering. For Croly, “social justice” was different than civil justice and the government need not be in the business of dictating or compelling certain groups to behave according to “politically correct” standards. Incidentally, the term “politically correct” was coined by Leon Trotsky, who along with his comrades in Russia, needed to know how the political winds of the Communist Party were blowing on a daily basis so as not to be rebuked or punished for thinking outside of the party line.

    Also, the current iteration of liberalism is a far cry from that of Croly, JFK, Dr. King, “Scoop” Jackson, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, or Tip O’Neill. Progressive liberals today admire Dr. King for his righteous stand against racism and bigotry, but tend to loathe the religious faith that was at the heart of his convictions. Yes, there are good aspects of liberalism, but the point of my essay was to shed light on the causal dimension that is driving resentment-based political action and offer some principled solutions. Good-hearted, Godly, liberal folks are not my concern (my mother and six sisters come to mind); progressives with neo-Marxist leanings are.

    I know several BCs and older members of our church who went to liberal arts colleges who now believe the Marxist meme that the U.S. is the biggest sponsor of state terror and cause of all bigotry, racism, xenophobia, and homophobia in the world today. One of our blessed members is of the opinion (stated on social media forums) that Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is the greatest statesman of the past 30 years. Something is amiss.

  8. I guess I have to read Adorno’s book ten times before I can understand all the implications. As far as I know, he wrote The Authoritarian Personality against the Nazi type of personality in Germany after World War II, being confronted with the Holocaust. He even wrote: Poems are no longer possible. In the students uprising of 1968, Adorno or “Die Frankfurter Schule” had become the leading ideology. You’re in awe when you stand in front of his 20 volumes of philosophy, literary criticism and music theory.

    One of his students, Joachim Kaiser, was one of Germany’s best literary and music critics, writing for Die Süddeutsche Zeitung. Interesting would be the question: what did other Jewish thinkers make of Adorno? Rebels from 1968, Joschka Fischer and Gerhard Schröder, led the German government against the Bush wars. They might have thought, this time “The Authoritarian Personality” comes definitely from the American side. Then you have the writer Thea Dorn, who was and is quite influential on German TV; she changed her last name to Dorn out of love for Adorno. You also have a second “Frankfurter Schule” already in German literature, authors like Eckart Henscheid or Robert Gernhardt. They like to keep fun, hedonism and indulgence in art or music, but are clearly positioned against God or religion, not to mention anything authoritarian.

    Where in the world should people come from with a fighting spirit against the current problems in Germany? What is good authority? What is a charismatic leader? These writers have been prose artists, clear style, highly intelligent, followers of Hegel, Marx and Freud. It is difficult to find a new paradigma and to write better than they did.

    • Hello, Thomas.

      Adorno wrote quite a lot about music (he composed a bit) and was a huge advocate of the atonal technique of Arnold Schoenberg and what is known as “The Second Viennese School.” But as musicologist Richard Taruskin points out, Schoenberg and Adorno articulated a view of art that was seriously influenced “by the liberatory vibe of the dialectic.” I concur.

      Schoenberg would go as far to say that, “The public must be cured of the delusion that the aim of the artist is to create beauty.”

      For Adorno, the Second Viennese School was the next logical/historical step in the evolution of musical composition. His was a decidedly deterministic view (in the Marxist sense) and he wrote extensively on the “inevitability” of Schoenberg’s methods and aesthetics. He even argued against the “tyranny of nature” in music — the overtone series — saying that logic and intellect (left brain) were the more salient aspects of musical composition and any attempt to conserve the aesthetics of the old world (Beethoven, Brahms, etc.) was merely a perpetuation of the “false consciousness” of the Christian, bourgeois culture that needed to be replaced by the new progressive approach to music — aesthetics be damned.

      But as history is proving, the crabbed mannerisms of Schoenberg’s music — and his acolytes — is increasingly ignored precisely because its hyper-intellectual approach to composition creates an indeterminate aural experience — music with little or no ingratiating aesthetic.

      He was also a harsh critic of American popular music (pop culture in general), seeing it as unenlightened, clichéd, kitsch without much intellectual gravitas. For Adorno “mass culture” was an affront to avant-garde sensibilities, which is ironic considering that popular music was very much music of the “common man,” you know, the proletariat — the constituency that Marxists were supposedly fighting for.

  9. With regard to writing better than Adorno, Freud and company, may I suggest a few commentators and philosophers who come at these issues from what I believe is a more God-centered (Abel-Type) perspective: Roger Scruton, F.A. Hayek, Thomas Sowell, C.S. Lewis, Jonah Goldberg, Denis Dutton, Viktor Frankl, William F. Buckley, Jr., Isaiah Berlin, E. Michael Jones, Melanie Phillips, Camille Paglia, Kay Hymowitz, Ken Wilber, Karl Popper and Bruce Bawer to name a few. There are more than a few enlightened souls out there who see things from perspectives that are close to ours.

    One very intriguing read is Michael Walsh’s recent book, The Devil’s Pleasure Palace. Walsh was the music journalist for TIME magazine and worked in Hollywood for a period. His book brilliantly critiques the Frankfurt School modalities from the biblical view of the Human Fall. Walsh, a Catholic, gets the fall narrative about 80% correct from the DP perspective but he delves deep inside the resentment aspect of cultural Marxism with coruscating clarity.

  10. David,

    The beginning and the end are the same, a sign of a well-thought article. However the end is meant to be a conclusion of the explanation of the first postulates you made.

    As Thomas commented, there are volumes of literature published by the “Frankfurter Schule”. The initial aim of this thought system, whose leading thinkers were Horkheimer and Wiesengrund, was re-emphasizing Marx/Engel’s dialectic, adding psychoanalysis and arguing that philosophy needs a practical link to solve today’s (post-war) problems. At that point, they even prepared the ground for DP to emerge as the final stage for change in society. However in the end, both of them did not believe positive change will come about (they missed our missionaries).

    You try to connect those thoughts, or what you think they are, with issues such as transgender, race, sex, and multiculturalism. A far cry in my understanding, especially when based on resentment according to your explanation. These philosophers may turn over inside their graves.

    If I understand you correctly, you feel a general atmosphere of “political correctness” that has its roots in such type of thought systems. I think this is incorrect.

    • Rohan,

      Two of the primary objectives of the Frankfurt School were to undermine the Judeo-Christian legacy of the West through what Georg Lukacś called the “abolition of culture” (Aufhebung der Kultur), and to create new cultural forms and practices which would increase the alienation of the population, thus creating a “new barbarism.” Taking their cues from Marx, Nietzsche and Freud, they set about their task with the express intent of weaponizing sexuality in ways that would take down the traditional family.

      The neo-Marxists of the Frankfurt School juxtaposed Freud’s ideas with Marxist/Hegelian rationale and promoted the idea that rage, jealousy, resentment and revenge against “traditional” values could all be justified because it was, after all, the traditions of the bourgeoisie, patriarchic culture that caused slavery, imperialism, chauvinism and sexual oppression in the first place.

      “Sexual liberation” (a term coined by another Frankfurt School alumnus, Wilhelm Reich) was used as a cudgel against all that. These folks saw the power of “immoral” sexual behavior as a serious weapon in the fight against the “old world” paradigms of traditional values (Nietzsche’s influence). And because Freud posited that sex was primarily a biological/physiological concern with little or no spiritual essence, it was easy to justify the weaponization of sexuality to advance the neo-Marxist cause (Paul Kengor’s fine book, Takedown is a must read on all this.)

      Connect the dots: Marx, Hegel, Nietzsche, Freud, Lukacś, Reich, Adorno, Marcuse. For me it’s not a “general atmosphere” issue. I see resentment as the driving emotional impulse that fuels the advocates of the Frankfurt School’s Critical Theory and the rationale that justifies the evisceration of Judeo-Christian belief in the guise of “social justice.”

      Yes, many folks missed our missionaries (or we missed them.) Had they met our missionaries and learned DP, they might have had the epiphany that resentment is toxic and is no way to attain real social justice.

      • I sympathize with your opinion about the effects their thoughts may have provoked in others. Misusing and misinterpreting quotes is widespread. One very well-known line from a poem, but cut in half, from Berthold Brecht, “What if they gave a war and nobody came…” was used in leftist propaganda relentlessly, counting on the ignorance of the masses. But, the rest of the line from Brecht’s poem continues: “Why, then, the war would come to you!”

        However, the philosophical contribution of Wiesengrund/Adorno is understood as one of the philosophical foundations of West Germany. Both Horkheimer and Wiesengrund abhorred the riots of the student gangs of the late 60’s. There might be others who are linked to the Frankfurter Schule, such as Lukacs whom you mentioned, so it is not a homogeneous thought system. That is why I focused on these individuals, being the main representatives in Frankfurt (perhaps that is why Frankfurt is mentioned).

        Every human being is driven by emotions; the question is how much he/she can control them. In the case of these philosophers, their thought is far too deep to reduce it to that level. Improper behavior (sexual) has more to do with the decreasing persuasive power of Christianity due to its failure to accept the LSA.

  11. Rohan,

    You mention a significant issue: the relationship between reason and emotion. We may be driven by emotions, as you say, but emotion and reason must be harmonized according to DP.

    To construe emotions to be merely surges through the mind and body of pure affect is unprincipled. Reason and truth can judge the veracity or falsity of the judgments at the heart of an emotion, and pronounce an emotion to be appropriate or inappropriate, misguided and so on. In this respect, the harmonization of truth and emotion is essential in order to act in a virtuous way.

    For instance, if I love someone, I judge (assess) that person to be worthy of my love. If I fear someone, I judge the person to be dangerous in some way. If I mistrust someone, there is a reason for that mistrust, and so on through all the emotions. These judgments (or assessments) do not simply accompany one’s emotions, they are essential to them, and cannot be analytically separated from each other as though they were only contingently connected. As Chapter 1 in Divine Principle asserts, the harmonization of truth and emotion (reason and heart) centered on God becomes the basis for principled behavior and principled relationships.

    Ken Wilber speaks to the separation/segregation of intellect, emotion and will in his book, A Brief History of Everything. It’s a good read on this issue.

  12. Maestro Eaton,

    Thank you for a well-researched article on the toxicity of neo-Marxist multi-culturalism and resentment-filled identity politics.

    There is a tone deafness in the extremism that has reached a fever pitch. Your essay composition is a thoughtful call for an audience response rooted in civility and Principle. According to the Divine Principle, the trend of world history is gravitating towards a single global belief system that grants religious freedom. As a blanket statement, the causal dimension of our current political climate is a type of dialectic; it is based upon Anglo-Germanic philosophy. The two major expressions of AG philosophy are free-market democracy and state-run communism. Both expressions of democratic and communist ideologies have become toxic, discordant and hostile.

    However, the West has one advantage: that its founders had “enshrined religious freedom — a guaranteed right — as a necessary aspect for a society to have the proper moral and ethical standards on which to base its laws and prescriptions for fairness and justice.” This next ideological expression of new truth is based upon the reconciliation of science and religion, the virtues of interdependence, civic virtues and mutual prosperity. And, it is in accord with the spirit of the U.S. Constitution. To draw out this spirit, the Constitutional Preamble can be paraphrased, Unity, Justice, Tranquility … to secure the blessing for ourselves and Posterity (three object purpose/four position foundation). In this spirit, multi-cultural hostility, ethic resentment, extremism and political correctness can be toned down. It is perhaps the orchestral movement of a new symphonic harmony.

    • Robert,

      Your analysis is spot on with regard to freedom “enshrined” in the American founding document. As I mentioned, the idea that freedom comes from God is where the left/progressives get it wrong. Their antipathy towards religion in general is based on a spurious contention that religion is intrinsically oppressive (Nietzsche again). The anti-essentialists go a step further and say that there is no metaphysical or spiritual reality at all, and therein lies the basis of their faulty perspectives regarding freedom, justice, equality and altruism.

      • David,

        The anti-essentialist argument is at the center of the transgender debate. So, the question, what are the defining characteristics of what it means to be male or female. In this debate, biological and scientific criteria are pushed aside while non-material factors such as mental state and emotional attitude are given preference. The anti-essentialist advocates are seeking to enforce their views by eliminating genetic gender distinction through the power of the legal system, social hysteria and taking cues from Rules for Radicals (Saul Alinsky).

        Yet my contention is that Anglo-Germanic philosophy which is representative of religious, Western scientific and anti-essentialist thought must undergo meaningful ideological reform. It is ontological or semiotic reform that authoritatively establishes the unchanging meaning to words, phenomena and symbols. This semiotic work was initially undertaken by Sang Hun Lee with the direct instruction of Sun Myung Moon. The book, Unification Thought, was authored by Lee. With their passing, the essentials of Unification Thought would have to be rediscovered, cut and polished. Such seminal work must be done quickly by the best minds. Thus, the importance of the revival of the International Conferences for the Unity of the Sciences (ICUS) in conjunction with the development of the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP).

  13. With regard to Rohan’s citing Horkheimer and the principal purveyors of Critical Theory, the underlying philosophical tenet of the Frankfurt School, it was Horkheimer who asserted that Critical Theory was a means “to liberate human beings from the circumstances that enslave them.” (Sorry if that quote is rather truncated or broad).

    This rationale became the premise for the Frankfurt School philosophers, and when juxtaposed with Hegel, Freud, and later, the deconstructionists Derrida and Foucault and the contemporary purveyors of PC-based social justice like Martha Nussbaum and Howard Zinn, the resulting activism within the political arena takes on a decidedly illiberal modality with a special antipathy toward religion and any metaphysical references.

    F.A. Hayek considered social justice to be a “mirage” and vague concept that was used as an operational modality to seek positive rights; “an instrument of ideological intimidation for the purpose of gaining the power of legal coercion.” There is a philosophical incongruity here — as there is with all Marxist-based rationale; namely that freedom comes from God and not the state. If the state becomes authoritarian in the pursuit of social justice a new oppressor is created.

  14. The video embedded in my essay was the choice of the AU editor. I haven’t read Francis Fukuyama’s work so I can only comment on what I’ve listened to here.

    His focus tends to be economic equality and justice. He cites Brexit and the Trump victory as a symptom of nationalist populism, which is true. However, many Brits had enough with nameless, faceless bureaucrats in Brussels dictating social and economic policy without any representative recourse. They were faced with hundreds of regulations and strictures that they had no say in. Basically they said, “Enough!”

    The reason Trump won something like 87% of counties in the U.S. and the Electoral College was because he appealed to some of the same issues facing the Brits vis-a-vis the EU, namely, too many elected officials who don’t really listen to their constituents — and too many regulations, aka government intrusion.

    F.A. Hayek disliked the economic aspect of redistributive “social justice” because he feared what he called “merit czars,” faceless bureaucrats deciding economic winners and losers.

    Fukuyama speaks of democracy as a mode to achieve “equality” though solving “common problems,” mostly in terms of economics and he worries that nationalism will be a hedge against equality in an economic sense. Nowhere in his talk does he speak to the issue of freedom coming from God and that the right to chose is intrinsic to a truly representative government.

    [Editor’s note: Francis Fukuyama is best known for his book, The End of History and the Last Man (1992). He is also associated with the rise of the neoconservative movement, from which he has since distanced himself.]

    • Nigel Farage, member of the European Parliament, longtime proponent of the Brexit movement and supporter of the President, was a very articulate and powerful speaker at the 2017 CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) in Washington, DC, on February 22-24.

      Interestingly, Jikido “Jay” Aeba of the Japanese Conservative Union also spoke again this year. Although he lives in Japan, he wants to support President Trump and the American Conservative movement.

      The President, who also spoke at CPAC, leans more headwing in my opinion. He crosses lines, but aligns with enough conservative principles, such as religious liberty, constitutionalism on the Supreme Court, privatization of healthcare, strong defense and national security, state control of public education while also supporting government healthcare for single and pregnant mothers, inner city initiatives and job programs to eradicate joblessness and poverty, etc.

      The speeches can be accessed on the CPAC website and YouTube.

  15. Living in Munich I cannot but read Die Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper in case there’s an interesting article on literature. As I bought a copy this Wednesday because of Thomas Mann, I found quite disturbing news inside the paper. In the meantime I read already four articles on the issue. “The House of Art” museum in Munich fired a personnel manager because he is alleged to be a member of “Scientology”. Even German state intelligence is investigating. It looks like they found a whole group of Scientology members working there. A member of Parliament from the SPD is demanding action, too.

    Here’s an article in English about the whole matter:

    German state intelligence investigates ‘Scientologist infiltration’ at leading art museum

    I really don’t know how Scientology is perceived in the U.S., but Tom Cruise is a famous Scientologist and he apparently doesn’t receive any government persecution. I believe Scientology has a right to exist and is protected by law. Article 4 of the basic law in Germany states:

    (1) Freedom of faith and of conscience, and freedom to profess a religious or philosophical creed, shall be inviolable.

    (2) The undisturbed practice of religion shall be guaranteed.

    On the other hand, there is a witch-hunt against Scientology that reminds me of my hometown Wuerzburg where they burned the last witch. In your essay you find a whole lot of arguments against an authoritarian state that persecutes a minority religion. “What is proclaimed and practiced as tolerance today, is in many of its most effective manifestations serving the cause of oppression,” sounds very adequate to me. If the elite doesn’t want Scientology in, there is only the chance of a court case against an overpowering enemy.

    Personally, I’m not a fan of Scientology, but they were guests in our center in Munich. What’s your point of view, David? How can you develop in an atmosphere like that?

    • Thomas,

      Under the single global belief system — freedom to believe in religion (even no particular religion) is granted based upon results: Unity, Justice, Tranquility … to secure the blessing (4 realms of heart – mutual prosperity) for ourselves and Posterity.

      • Robert,

        I’m not sure I follow you here. Are you saying that all people of the world will gladly accept a “single global belief system” if that belief system produces unity, justice and tranquillity?

        • David,

          Whosoever produces the fruits (results) of the spirit (ontology of heart/absolute values) shall secure the position of Elder son. In other words, theory and practice are united under True Parents.

        • David,

          It may sound strange to say the state grants something that everyone has. In the case that God-given (liberty) rights are abused with no regard to whole purposes then the kingdom police might be called in to restore peace and order.

  16. Thomas,

    The emergence of Thomas Hobbes’ “social contract theory” and his concept of “the mutual transferring of right” became the foundation for modern civil society: the very rationale of a Republic in which the scriptural tenet of the Golden Rule (alterum facere vultis ut faciam obis), “do unto others as you would have others do unto you,” is a guiding moral principle. The need for religious freedom is paramount and the founders of the American Consitution intuited that. It’s interesting to see the parallels between U.S. and German law with regard to religious rights.

    If we want the practice of our own faith tradition to be protected (negative rights), then we need to advocate for protection of all religions. That said, there are laws in the U.S. that prohibit certain activities by sectarian organizations and as individual citizens we need to live according to the laws of the land.

    Let me just point out (as I have done above) that the current iteration of liberalism is a far cry for that of Herbert Croly, JFK, Dr. King, “Scoop” Jackson and Tip O’Neill. Croly (who founded The New Republic) was opposed to using government to attain “social justice” via identity politics. This perspective alone points to huge difference to many of today’s advocates of liberalism and their predecessors.

    Headwing must be based on Godism and freedom of religion, therefore, is a sine qua non. Many liberals today admire Dr. King for his righteous stand on bigotry and racism, but tend to loathe the religious faith that fueled his convictions. The evisceration of traditional religious values, especially as they pertain to sexuality, has become a pernicious aspect of current progressive orthodoxy.

  17. David,

    Thank you for your patient efforts and taking your time. As “The House of Art” is a Nazi building, the treatment of Scientology reminds me of the persecution of the Jews. In Germany we have Gerhard Besier, a professor who takes no crap from anybody and who investigated the role of the Christian churches in the Third Reich. He also published two books: Die neuen Inquisitoren and Religionsfreiheit und Glaubensneid about the new inquisitors, religious freedom and faith envy. “From 2003 to 2008, he was the director of the Hannah Arendt Institute for Research on Totalitarianism at Dresden University; his contract was not renewed following widespread criticism in Germany of his liberal views on Scientology.” His book on Scientology is out of print, maybe somebody bought all the copies.

    I wonder what Adorno, Horkheimer or others would have said against such treatment, as they were Jews, identified with the history of their people and might have recognized the persecution of minority religions as a national sport in Bavaria.

    I would describe myself as a Rock’n Roll freak and left-wing Christian who became a member of a minority religion in 1976. Persecution by the Catholic church in Wuerzburg brought my parents automatically up against the UC. Then we had Danbury. In 1998 we had the German Bundestag inquiring about new cults. From 1996-2007 Rev. Moon was prohibited to travel to Germany, until the victory in a court case overruled this decision. If other students or professors found out about my identity as a UC member, I had it. Even at work or on Facebook, you have to be very careful, not to let out too much about God or related topics. How can you be victorious as a “tribal Messiah”? These things go through my head as we celebrate the 500th jubilee of Martin Luther’s Reformation.

    I feel like I lived 40 years in a jar and would love to break out of it or die trying. I go on the offensive, because I would love to hear some valuable suggestions from you or anybody.

  18. Thomas,

    It’s clear that the scenario in Germany is quite different that the U.S. regarding what you describe. In New York, many musicians know that I’m a UC member. There are those who will never work with me because of that, but there are others who just don’t care about my religion but respect me as a professional. They have no qualms about my UC affiliation and some actually respect TPs for their humanitarian and interfaith endeavors. I actually have quite a few allies in the music circles that I roam in NYC and beyond, and these relationships have led to a decent amount of free-lance work.

    Because situations with regard to employment and earning a living are very personal, I don’t know what I might suggest other than having faith that Heavenly Parent know our situations and will assist if we make the right conditions and remain sincere in our efforts. I’ve had a number of breakthroughs after I’ve made conditions. Being wise is a must, but taking risks is sometimes necessary to advance.

  19. David,

    Thank you for your timely article and one that gets to the heart of the divisions facing us today. In the end, we are still dealing with the results of the fall. We see expressions of the four fallen natures all around us. This is at the root of all our problems. Identity politics, based as they are on resentment, will only be resolved by recognizing the feeling of lack of love at its root. The headwing position, God’s position, must be one that hates the sin, but loves the sinner. We have devolved today to a position where hating the sinner, i.e., demonizing those you disagree with, is becoming the default position. We can no longer respectfully and civilly disagree, but we must, in our self-righteousness, pummel and punish the opposition. I believe that to build the headwing position, we must emphasize the “loving the sinner” (or enemy, if you will) before we embark on the “hating the sin” part.

  20. The clarification and/or reiteration of historical trends, reversals and progressions, et. al., here are somewhat helpful, I suppose, but does any of this truly (or actually) contribute to the ultimate, hoped for goal of — natural surrender? Or even one big happy family reunion?

    “Channeling our emotions” and battling against a “tainted multiculturalism” (what does an untainted multiculturalism look like?) may get us to that better place somehow, someday, particularly, individually — when we are focused, on point, with God, etc. — but collectively, it would seem to me that the rollercoaster will continue…on and on.

    But a (few) good, public debate(s) (e.g, in the manner of Lincoln vs. Douglas) might be fairly invigorating — if only our current media milieu/zombified public would allow/encourage such.

    Alas, change is surely a comin’…

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