Recently I saw an article in the Los Angeles Times that actually used the following phrase, “The coveted black women vote.”
Before I begin my tangent let me start by saying I am hesitant to even use the term “identity politics.” I feel that the term is used more often than not to silence the voices of women or people of color in leftist spaces when confronting the reality of what it means to be anti racist becomes uncomfortable. That said, I think that there is a staunch difference between liberal identity politics and leftist identity politics.
Leftists acknowledge intersectionality and use it to improve their analysis so that they may recruit and engage with more people in a more diverse way. Liberals use identity politics to tokenize, to excuse their own complacency in white supremacy, and most shallowly to get votes.
This is why I get infuriated when we talk about “the women vote” or “the black vote,” as if anyone who is not a white straight male in our society is of some bizarre kind of hive mind.
I hope everyone realizes that is what pundits and politicians are saying when they sayings like “the coveted black women vote.”
They are saying that oppressed groups of voters, such as black people, women, black women are nothing more than who they vote for president and what is worse is the dehumanizing idea that they will all vote for the same person for the same reasons.
When it comes down to discussing the “woman vote” or the “black vote” in the eyes of liberal and conservative pundits you are no longer a collection of individuals, each with your own stories and culture and background and reasoning. No, to them you are simply a part of a demographic, a thing to be used as fodder for politicians and talking heads alike.
They are fucking insulting you and reducing you to an infantile point. We should not stand for this.