Minorities Need Conservatives; and Conservatives Need Minorities

Today conservatism is stigmatized in our culture as an antiminority political philosophy. In certain quarters, conservatism is simply racism by another name. And minorities who openly identify themselves as conservatives are still novelties, fish out of water.

By Shelby Steele
The Wall Street Journal

Yet there is now the feeling that without an appeal to minorities, conservatism is at risk of marginalization. The recent election revealed a Republican Party — largely white, male and Southern — seemingly on its way to becoming a “regional” party. Still, an appeal targeted just at minorities — reeking as it surely would of identity politics — is anathema to most conservatives. Can’t it be assumed, they would argue, that support of classic principles — individual freedom and equality under the law — constitutes support of minorities? And, given the fact that blacks and Hispanics often poll more conservatively than whites on most social issues, shouldn’t there be an easy simpatico between these minorities and political conservatism?

But of course the reverse is true. There is an abiding alienation between the two — an alienation that I believe is the great new challenge for both modern conservatism and formerly oppressed minorities. Oddly, each now needs the other to evolve.

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One Response to “Minorities Need Conservatives; and Conservatives Need Minorities”

  1. jack Says:

    America is not a melting pot Mr Steel. This is 2009 not 1965. In Silicon Valley more tha 50% of the high tech professionals are none White – they are from China, Latin America, and IndoAsia. My medical doctor is from China. When I speak to my local banker or drug store staff for drugs they all hail from India. When I was shopping for a car last year the gent was born in the USA but his parents are from the Pacific Islands. More and more boys I see on the streets like more like Tiger Woods than Justin Timberlake. They are not just biracial but quads or transracial.

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