Russel Brand wrote a rambling but insightful article on privilege and social movements. I disagree with him on not voting, 'cause the only thing representatives care about is keeping their seats, so voting in numbers is actually a great way to influence policy (just look at power of the AARP in the US). This comment stuck out:

for an ideology that is defined by inclusiveness, socialism has become in practice quite exclusive

'cause I've been thinking about friends who say "I don't agree with feminism/I'm not a feminist", but who very much value things like equal pay, access to health care, abuse/rape/harassment prevention and support, all those things that feminism is for. What they tend to disagree with is the sorta stuff that conflicts with religion (like female clergy) that, while it arguably is a part of feminism, does more harm than good when it becomes a defining part of feminism.

The best way I can think of it is that the left sometimes turns itself into a fundamentalist religion, where the number of hoops to call oneself a good feminist/ally/whatever keep increasing. Like yeah, there's a baseline, but make a barrier too high and you'll turn off people who'd likely be all on board-and we want these people on board 'cause the more people down with a liberal idea, the more likely structural change is to happen.

Gawker's Article.

Advertisement