The Narrowing Effect Of Diversity

I’ve just read an article at Crisis magazine called The Day the Music Died. (Hat-tip to Bill V.)

From the article:

When pursued to its logical conclusion, multiculturalism leads to monoculturalism, and eventually to a monochrome society. That’s because without a common culture to unite them, multicultures break down into competing subcultures. When this happens, the ruling authorities step in and make laws outlawing “hate” and “insensitivity” in the hope that everyone can be forced to respect everyone else.

Quite so. The mechanism by which this happens is simple, and easily understood. That it isn’t blazingly obvious to all can only be explained, I believe, by its conflicting with some higher creed that rules this self-evident truth out-of-bounds as a dangerous heresy. (Which it is: from the perspective of the hegemonic Universalist religion we call Progressivism it is a very dangerous heresy indeed — because it is so obviously true.)

I’ve written about this often, but I feel the need to summarize it from time to time, to keep it fresh in the reader’s mind, and to find new ways of clarifying the argument. I boiled it down last year in a post called Tractatus Logico-Multiculturalus, and examined it in practical terms back in 2013, in Simple Common Sense About Diversity and Immigration.

If you’re familiar with what’s called a Venn diagram, which is used to display the relations between sets, the analysis is transparently clear. (If you aren’t, spend a few minutes here before proceeding.)

Consider the following (I will quote in part from Tractatus Logico-Multiculturalus):

1) Every distinct culture (i.e. the “multi” part of “multiculturalism) has distinct features and properties. (Obviously they must, or what would make them distinct?)

2) This means that every distinct culture can be thought of as containing a set of beliefs, traditions, attitudes, affinities, aversions, etc. that, taken together, are what distinguish that culture from other cultures.

3) Given that we can in this way view cultures as sets of distinguishing features, we can create a Venn diagram representing the relation between two or more cultures. If the cultures are similar (say, Danes and Swedes), there will be a great deal of overlap between them. We can also easily imagine two cultures (e.g. Swedes and Sentinelese Islanders) where the two sets have almost no area of intersection.

4) Many of the properties that make up a culture are normative features; i.e. beliefs about how one ought to behave, ought to dress, what one ought and ought not say or do in public, and thousands of other mores and customs.

5) Norms are often contradictory in a way that, say, food is not. (Food and music, the most commonly cited blessings of multiculturalism, are non-normative. To the extent that music is considered normative, it becomes subject to cultural exclusion.)

6) Every acculturated human is normatively inclined to do, and publicly to favor, the things that his culture prescribes — and to avoid, and publicly criticize, what his culture forbids. (Even though normative prescriptions and proscriptions must, in principle, subtract absolute liberties, in an organic culture they do not do so in a meaningful way, because we do not feel our liberty diminished by compulsions or prohibitions regarding things we would or would not do anyway.)

7) Where normative cultural features are concerned, those that are not shared are often considered, by members of other cultures, distasteful or even offensive.

8) That which is offensive is discouraged in the public square, for the sake of “respect” and comity.

9) In terms of our Venn diagram, this means that the broader norms of the “multiculture” — that which is permissible in public expression — can only include the intersection of the two sets. Although this occurs in the name of “inclusion”, it is actually, and necessarily, a process of exclusion, namely of whatever cultural particularities are not held in common by all components of the multiculture. As we have seen above, as more cultures are added, this set of commonalities contains fewer and fewer elements.

Imagine, then, Culture A, with 10,000 enumerable cultural features. Because they are broadly shared by all, nobody is much offended by any of them, and so all of these features can be expressed as naturally in the public square as in the privacy of the home.

Now add a second culture, B, to the Venn diagram. The overlap is close, but not perfect; of the set of 10,000 properties in the first culture’s circle, the second culture shares 9,000 of them. However, because public expression is to be limited to the intersection of the two cultures’ properties, we have now, from the perspective of Culture A, reduced its freedom of public cultural expression by ten percent — from its full set of 10,000 properties down to 9,000.

Now add a third culture to the mix (and a third circle to the diagram). Because the third culture is distinct from each of the other two, it will, necessarily, further shrink the number of properties common to all three sets — and thus will further reduce the collection of common beliefs and behaviors that are available for public expression.

This means two things: first, that the more cultures you add to a society the narrower, not broader, the range of public expression becomes; and second, that there will be an ever-increasing disparity between private life (which is now the only place where the full range of cultural life is possible) and public intercourse (which necessarily grows more and more restricted). This is a meaningful limitation of public liberty that is keenly and easily felt by all. Where once the private square flowed almost unnoticeably into the public, now each group feels constrained by the others. This in turn leads to a withdrawal from public life, and a breakdown of social cohesion. Meanwhile citizens, in their public role as citizens, are reduced to the basest sorts of commonality.

In sum, then: multiculturalism limits public liberty, creates a tension between public and private life that reduces public participation and lowers social cohesion, fragments societies into competing groups and lowers public trust, and, by denying any culture full public expression and support, actually contributes to the decay and death of the world’s rich cultural diversity. Cultures that might live and flower in relatively homogeneous homelands now wither and die under the relentless pruning and curtailment that is necessary to make muticulturalism work at all, and the multicultural society itself becomes a shrunken and cautious thing. The organic order and harmony unique to each culture suffocates and dies; into that vacuum steps a top-down, external order that acts on citizens only as barely differentiated atoms.

Why would anyone want this? The alternative is what the world has always been until very recently: for every culture, a homeland in which it may express itself freely and fully, and in which public and private life join in the unique, organic order that arises from the cultural particularities of its own people.

How is that not a better, richer world?

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  1. >how is that not a better, richer world?

    Some of us blame coin clutching merchants. Really though the fault lies in a comfortable and pampered segment of heritage America that gets a social boost from professing allegiance to x y and z talking points. So long as prestige can be harvested by goodthinkful Whites by worshiping at the altar of the dildocracy then the little tyrants will continue to destroy what little remains of what once was good. Someday, however, getting kicked repeatedly in the balls by frizzy haired mulatto chicks won’t grant white urbanites the accolades they desire. Whether that forces them to move elsewhere or complete the long drawn out suicide of democracy remains to be seen.

    Posted August 8, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink
  2. ErisGuy says

    An American elite which feels more solidarity with similar immigrants; e.g., “we’re all Harvard Ph.D.s here”) than to the farmers of Kansas or plumbers of Ohio, this “American” will by those immigrants be offered a choice to convert (to Islam), to submit to race laws (“You’re not La Raza”); or to die.

    Posted August 13, 2017 at 7:14 am | Permalink