Preserving the American Way of Life

Article CAIRCO note: 
A Reflection on Multiculturalism Versus the American Way of Life
Article author: 
Thomas D. Klingenstein
Article publisher: 
American Mind
Article date: 
June 21, 2020
Article category: 
Our American Future
High
Article Body: 
CAIRCO Note: This is a particularly insightful article. It identifies the core irresolvable conflict in America: Multiculturalism versus American values. The original article, while lengthy, is quite readable. Indeed, it is requisite reading. Excerpts are included below.
 
 
It seems to me Republicans are somewhat lost. And that may be, in part, because they are not exactly sure where they want to go. They do not think clearly enough about their purpose or mission.
 
My proposal for a mission is this: To “preserve the American way of life.”...
 
President Trump gets this. He has a mission: “Make America Great Again.”...
 
The mission I propose is shorthand for “securing the conditions necessary to pursue a worthy life.” “A worthy life” is what the founders meant by “happiness” in the Declaration of Independence....
 
What is the American way of life that Republicans should want to preserve? It would not be difficult to reach a consensus on this question among Republicans. They want to preserve, and in some respects recover, what Americans thought was the right way of life until a generation or two ago....
 
We believed ourselves to be the least class-conscious, most individualist, most religious people in the world. We believed that success in life depends on one’s own talents and character and so we glorified the self-made man. We valued work, no matter how humble, and self-reliance. Dependency was thought to be shameful. This was all part of the “American Dream.”...
 

Multiculturalism Versus the American Way of Life

... multiculturalism sees society not as a community of rights-bearing individuals with a shared understanding of a national good, but as a collection of cultural identity groups, ranked in order of victimhood (though all oppressed by white males), and aggregated within highly permeable national boundaries.Multiculturalism replaces American citizens with so-called “global citizens.”
 
Identity politics is the politics of multiculturalism. Political correctness is its enforcement arm. Multiculturalism involves a way of life that cannot exist peacefully with the American way of life any more than could Communism or the antebellum South.
 
The Claremont Institute has framed it as “Multiculturalism versus America.” A regime-level conflict is a struggle over what a society aims at, what its end is. Differences in ends cannot be negotiated....
 
Multiculturalism’s end is a society where there are no outcome disparities among identity groups. Each group has, proportional to its size, the same income (hence the need for socialism) and the same power as measured by job titles; that is, the same number of CEOs, senators, marines, fire fighters, college presidents, physicists, soccer players, etc....
 
... multiculturalism’s end (outcome parity) cannot possibly co-exist peacefully with a free society like America that is guided by nature’s laws. For in such a society there will always be group differences—between men and women and among various sub-cultures. Multiculturalism requires crushing these natural differences and so demands expansion of state power and countless social restrictions, including censorship (political correctness)....
 
Multiculturalism seeks to overthrow that [American] history. Multiculturalists, like totalitarians everywhere, understand that changing a culture requires rewriting its history so as to bring the past into line with the desired future...
 
In a sentence, the 1619 Project teaches that America—its values, customs, and institutions—is evil....
 
Multiculturalism seeks to destroy not only our history but education more broadly, as well as the other institutions that teach the beliefs and values necessary for preserving the American way of life. The most important of these institutions is family, because it is here “that the foundation of morality is laid” as John Adams put it. ...
 
Or take immigration restrictions. Democrats say they are unjust (selfish or racist), a judgment which is based on the multiculturalist worldview that does away with nation states, thereby eliminating the distinction between Americans and foreigners. Republicans usually respond by arguing that immigrants take jobs from Americans. That is a good and necessary argument, but it does not meet the multiculturalists’ claim that existing citizens do not deserve preference over foreigners.
 
The proper argument for discriminating among immigrants—the argument from justice—rests on the justification for having a single culture. We once took the need for a single culture for granted, but (as is often the case with things taken for granted), we have lost a firm grasp of the reasons why. ...