"The problem here is that Western history is believed to be some kind of quantity that needs to be evenly distributed...Antiracist post-modernism demands, after all, that all self-delineated groups get to define their histories and cultures as they see fit, leading to everyone getting to connect ethnically to a larger historical and cultural legacy except white Westerners who must sacrifice their histories and sense of themselves as a group on the alter of “antiracist”, “inclusive” revisionism"
One of my deepest concerns is that the increased presence of people of non-European descent in the Western world will invariably lead to the destruction of Western history and a Western canon. I believe this to amount to the destruction of the West itself. Admitting this is a problem for me for two reasons.
The first reason is that I have seen evidence for how identity and culture can span across colour, and that the distinctions between people that the alt-right should be recognizing is about “culture” rather than “colour”. A hypothetical example of this phenomenon may include a black and white Brit grouping together in Sweden (where most people look like the white Brit), or in Uganda (where most look like the black Brit), because they feel safer with those “like them” (seeing the “British” in each-other”). Indeed, I stubbornly refuse to say that there is some kind of fundamental wrongness about a black Westerner from the UK and a white Westerner from the UK being considered more part of the same group, than either would be with those who are closer to their respective ethnicities in Uganda, or Norway.
This brings me to the second problem I have with conceding that that the increased presence of people of non-European descent will damage the legacy of the West for those whose ancestors built it. This is because I fervently believe in a non-racial vision, or at least one in which humans reach out to each-other based on common humanity first.
This all being said, I would also be being dishonest if I were then to say that there is no harm done to White Westerners’ histories, legacies, and cultures, if more and more non-ethnic Europeans settle in the West. This is because the history and culture of the West, which is almost exclusively the legacy of ethnic Europeans, will become increasingly expected to be “equally distributed” among the non-European newcomers.
This will not, however, happen the other way around, as the histories and cultures that define what it is to be “Ugandan” or “Vietnamese” are not going to accommodate ethnic Europeans, if perhaps, for no other reason than Ethnic Europeans will continue to become an increasingly irrelevant global demographic, and will almost certainly not exist in the future in any relevant numbers in any non-Western country.
Just take a look at the latest cover for Battlefield One, posted above. Not much needs to be said about it, other than that this happened because WW1 is part of Western history, and Western history is so much the preserve of ethnic Europeans and their efforts throughout history that the game developers thought “look, so much of what we do depicts white people, that honestly, its only fair to give people of colour some airtime. Those who disagree are just racists anyway”.
The problem here is that Western history is believed to be some kind of quantity that needs to be evenly distributed. Some might say “no, not Western history, but global history” needs to be evenly distributed, and that is only “fair”. Again, the problem here is that nearly all the relevant bits of “global history”, at least those aspects leading to modernity as we know it, which would naturally be of particular interest to moderns like ourselves, is… you guessed it…. Western history. This history is also not divorced from the people who made it. The history of the Western world, is not the history of the ancestors of all people who now happen to live in the West. It is the history of the ancestors of white westerners. This means a history of the United Kingdom, or of Poland will almost exclusively be a history of white people, much to the chagrin of modern Westerners who want to be "inclusive". Their histories are just not inclusive enough, and thus need to be changed.
This is how we get to a situation in which a war fought almost exclusively by people of European and Middle Eastern descent (Turks), dominated by the political and social histories of European nations (who naturally were almost exclusively occupied be people of ethnic Europeans), is depicted with a person of black African descent. It is about as absurd as the spontaneous apotheosis of Idris Elba into the Norse god Heimdall in the cinema adaption of Marvel’s “Thor”. Not mentioned in Marvel’s Thor is that Heimdall, amusingly, was known as the “whitest” among his pantheon, as recorded by his ancient worshippers. Clearly these examples were not decisions about what is or is not a reasonable depiction of Western history (or myth), it is about fairly distributing Western history among people of all ethnicities and races. This is partly because the history of the world (as it led to modernity), is so dominated by the history of the West, which is to say the history of those of Ethnic European descent. However, it is also partly because so many people now live in the West, whose ancestors were not Western.
As a result, absurd revisions of Western European and Myth, like black men adorning games concerning WW1, or being chosen to represent the Norse god Heimdall occur because there are such large numbers of non-European ethnic groups in Western countries like the UK, leading so many to conclude that “since they are British, they ‘deserve’ their slice of Western history. But what happens when non-European ethnic groups start outnumbering their indigenous countrymen in the West? The Western slice of THEIR OWN history gets smaller and smaller, while Pakistani history remains the preserve of those of Pakistani descent, Ugandan and Vietnamese history too, and so on and so forth for everyone except white westerners. In this respect demography is destiny, and Westerners who bring in immigrants are destroying themselves as groups along with their ancestors and their histories.
I think it is wrong to require that White Westerners forgo the ethnic aspect of their historical legacy, when everyone else gets to keep theirs. But this is not a high moralizing “wrong” I speak of in which some universal agent now owes Westerners something for their suffering. Instead, as I have described elsewhere, the “wrong” I am using is the sort of “wrong” implied when insulting a friend for doing something bloody stupid that is against their best interests. Ultimately, all the problems I have described in this article are not only within the remit of the West to correct, but caused by the Wests’ own ideological commitments and poor interpretations thereof. Thus the “wrong” I refer to is not a whining appeal to a deontic god, but a call for action to correct a recognizable fault.
Having established WHY I believe this double standard that requires Westerners to forgo the ethnic dimension of their histories, which is clearly important to everyone else, is wrong, let is return to the nature of this double standard. Some may yet come back and say I have constructed and attacked a straw man regarding what will be required of the West by its growing racial minority populations, vis-a-vie equally distributing Western cultural and ethnic history. Such an argument may go, “yes, ok, but would a black Brit REALLY expect the history of the UK to have an equal distribution of black people? Surely his ‘British’ history is what he would focus on more than his “black” history?”. To that I would have to say, maybe. What is increasingly being learned in the West, however, is that even if a society does integrate its racial minority newcomers and lead them to celebrate their cultural histories before their ethnic/racial ones, the risk of that not happening will remain ever present, as there is no guarantee that the children of these immigrants won’t at some point decide that they identify far more with their ancestors’ ethno-cultural identity than their Western one. They will say “sure I speak the same language, and understand how and why my Western countrymen behave the way they do better than my own ethnic group elsewhere, but why does no one taught in my history class LOOK LIKE ME? That is not fair! I want that to be changed”. And therein lies the problem.
People DO see relevance to the phenotypical aspects of race and ethnicity, and no matter how integrated someone of non-European extraction becomes in their new Western culture, they will continue to feel hard done by that they cannot integrate this aspect of themselves into their idea of their personal connection to culture, ethnicity and history. If this were not true, then why is there such a mess in Western academia, and society more generally, about history being only about “dead white men”? Why would it be a problem for a black Brit that “their” history is one of dead people who look nothing like them, unless they somehow have the notion that this could not truly be “their” history at all, but just the history of those people who built the state they happen to live in?
This consequences of this tension are partly evident in the rise of the now dominant SJW view that “history is constructed and has no objective truth” in universities, and with an increasingly “diverse” West, this phenomenon will not go away. Indeed, with no objective truth, the onus on the historian is now on creating historical truths toward achieving social justice in the here and now, not attempting to produce a faithful model based on existing evidence. In other words, fairly distributing Western and European history among those not ethnically/racially Western or European. But mind you, this is only required of the West. Antiracist post-modernism demands, after all, that all self-delineated groups get to define their histories and cultures as they see fit, leading to everyone getting to connect ethnically to a larger historical and cultural legacy except white Westerners who must sacrifice their histories and sense of themselves as a group on the alter of “antiracist”, “inclusive” revisionism.
Returning to the obligations of Western, and exclusively Western, history, there is only one recourse to solving the ever present power asymmetry recognized by the “revolutionary” harbingers of post-modernism and social justice, in a West increasingly occupied by non-European ethnic groups. This assymetrical power dynamic will invariably be between the “dominant” ethnic European Westerners and their visibly different minority national and civilizational cohabitants, and its obvious ‘socially just’ solution is to do things like depicting World War One and its soldiers with a person of black African descent, as we see in my previous example of Battlefield One. Further, as I said, this will happen more and more as the West is inhabited by more and more people of non-European extraction. And yes, white westerners will be expected to forgo an important part of their history to accommodate this new “inclusive” Western history. And no, this phenomenon will not be expected of any other cluster of ethnic groups anywhere else in the world.
I think this bleak future for the white Westerner is entirely undesirable and should be prevented, but I simply do not know how to prevent it without making concessions regarding the deeply held convictions I have described above. It is a most unpleasant internal battle.
As a side-note, it is worth mentioning that Japan has none of the problems I have described above, yet remains a dynamic, prosperous economy. The reasons for that should be obvious.
No feedback yet
Form is loading...