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August 14, 2004

The tools on hand

Had dinner with a friend yesterday. We talked a little bit about the McGreevy fiasco, and noted that it seemed that the good old governor was now wrapping himself in the flag of being a "gay American." The fact is, the guy was a hypocrite, a creep and a liar. It makes sense that such an amoral egoist would now try and align himself (or leverage) a political movement and play the "victim card."

I bring this up because this sort of behavior can be generalized: any political movement or organization designed to expand freedom(s) or redress injustice for any given group is at a certain point hijacked by the self-interested and selfish subset within that group. Moving past the McGreevy case, it seems that many modern day feminists, groups like the NAACP and even more egregiously the SPLC exist to extract funds in the service of the individuals who head them. All Chinese dynasties went through a cycle, as do, unfortunately, many republics, as the public spirit declines in the face of ennui and decadence, and the same can be seen in political "movements." At some point the quest for justice becames the quest for righteousness, and that righteousness can quickly tanslate into money, status and the capacity for intellectual terrorism. The examples are myriad, from Michael Jackson's claim that he was persecuted because he was "black," to a girl I knew in college who quietly threatened the possibility of sexual harrasment or sex discrimination unless her A in physical chemistry was upgraded to an A+, the quest for universal equality and justice seems to drown in the squalor of petty concerns and narrow interests.

Posted by razib at 09:54 AM