I don’t mind admitting that I mindlessly accepted the diversity propaganda when I was younger. Granted, this was before it became so frantic and overbearing that you couldn’t walk onto a college campus without three very earnest people sitting down to lecture you upon the extreme importance of diversity at all times and in all places.
As a white 100-meter sprinter in high school whose primary competition was with black sprinters from the nearby inner city schools, I was a firm believer in the idea that all cultures were created essentially equal. Since I had friendly relations with the brothers from North, South and Roosevelt against whom I ran, I couldn’t understand how anyone could deny the obvious truth that people are simply people regardless of their color, culture or creed. So, why should it be that you and I should get along so awfully?
Of course, when your grasp of history, psychology and social science is predominantly informed by sports and European electronic pop music, you shouldn’t be too surprised when it turns out to be more than a little inaccurate. Since then, I have traveled around the world, have lived on three different continents and subsequently concluded that cultural relativism only lasts until you actually try living in a foreign culture.
My first inkling that perhaps all was not as it seemed was when my university, for no discernible reason, suddenly began preaching the diversity gospel during my sophomore year. This seemed a bit strange, as about the only diverse institutions on campus at the time were the track and football teams. Our sprinter-jumper-hurdler group was one of the most racially integrated groups on campus, and we all found ourselves bewildered by the vehemence with which the administration went about declaiming the joys of diversity to a deeply non-diverse student body.
The lady was protesting far too much. Racial diversity was a simple fact of life, not some sort of magical rainbow land where everything was better. To us, it made no difference if you took the relay baton from a white guy and handed it to a black guy, or vice-versa; a teammate was a teammate. It was simple, uncomplicated, and the coaches never made any accommodations for anyone on the basis of their race. Not a single race-related problem ever arose during a time when we won four conference championships together.
But, as both history and scientific studies have reliably demonstrated, social relations between majorities and minorities are largely dependent upon the existence of a strong majority culture. Most likely, things would have been equally easygoing if the university had been a black one and it was the white athletes in the minority. It is only when two or more cultures are numerically significant enough for there to be conflicts over the social norms and permissible deviations from those norms that serious difficulties begin to arise.
These days, the old problems of black and white racial relations in America that were once so problematic look downright simple compared to the complications introduced by the radical changes to U.S. immigration policy in 1965. Now, the very meaning of what it means to be an American has become a deeply complicated one, as evidenced by the murders of 12 American soldiers by a man who was born in Virginia to Palestinian immigrants, a major in the U.S. Army, and a Muslim. And while the shootings could merely be the last tragic act of a psychiatrist who went off the deep end – let’s face it, the mentally unstable do tend to go in for the mind-related professions in disproportionate numbers – that’s not necessarily the case. But regardless, the real question is not so much whether Muslims can successfully coexist with secular America; it is whether multiculturalism has succeeded in eradicating the essential concept of America. When the melting pot can no longer melt due to overfilling, is it still a melting pot? And was there ever a melting pot in the first place?
The great problem facing the U.S. in the future, of which the Fort Hood shootings would appear to be an early harbinger, is that the undermining of America’s dominant European Christian culture has laid the foundation for what promises to be a long and bitter struggle for cultural supremacy. These struggles usually end one of three ways: division, expulsion or submission to a superior authority. Of the three, the latter would appear to be the most likely given the broad spectrum of global governance programs, but history seldom plays out according to the obvious scenario. Furthermore, economic downturns tend to play havoc with empires. The true tragedy of Fort Hood is that it could have been so easily avoided by rejecting the false promises of multiculturalism and mass immigration 44 years ago.