When I was watching Boyhood I assumed that some moron would point out that the protagonist’s social milieu was overwhelmingly white. And it’s out: Not Everyone’s Boyhood. Many of my friends have a hard time accepting I identify as conservative, but reading stuff like this makes it clear why I’m conservative, I feel like puking over this sort of critique because I think it’s totally dishonest. I feel confident that most of the white writers at The Atlantic, where the piece was published, had white childhoods, with white friends. If you look at the General Social Survey, and I have, around 50 percent of white liberals haven’t had a black person over for dinner in the last few years. And there was the media buzz recently about the fact that white people have white social networks. A clear case of “no shit” social science.
That is all fine. The writer of the piece on Boyhood is someone named Imran Siddequee, who is I’m sure working hard to make a career as a race hustler. And that’s good as far as it goes. If you majored in the humanities you have to make a living somehow. Not to be racist, but what really bothers me is the amen chorus of white liberals who deconstruct and denounce all manner of cultural production for its lack of “diversity”, but who live lives as populated by white people as the protagonist of Boyhood. As it happens I have a lot of white friends, and sometimes on Facebook you see wedding photos. Most of my friends are liberal, though not all, and one thing that is salient is that these wedding parties and attendees are mighty white. Even in California, where half the population is non-Hispanic white, good white liberals seem to be inviting only white people to their seminal life events.
So I’m proposing the “wedding test” to see if you really walk the walk on diversity and all that. You don’t have to marry someone of another race, I know that’s going too far for most people (recalling the Reihan Salam column in Slate where comments analogized same race preference to sexual orientation). But if diversity is really something you value, presumably that will be reflected in the few hundred people you invite to your wedding party. Change starts at home, if you can’t diversify your personal life, perhaps you should get off your high horse about how we need “more diversity in field X.”