We now know that multi-culturalism is dead. Cameron, Sarkozy and Merkel have said so and if even politicians have noticed what the rest of us have been aware of for years then it must be so. Except of course in the pages of the Guardian where naturally enough consumer capitalism and globalisation are the sources of all evil. Progressives still cling to the concept because unfortunately the principle upon which it was based is alive and kicking.
Multi-culturalism was based on the unsustainable premise that all cultures are morally valid. This led to the situation where if someone comes to a country to enjoy its material wealth and political freedoms they shouldn’t be forced to learn and adopt the principles and values upon which that wealth and those freedoms were based. Instead they should be encouraged to keep the charming customs, cultural practices, religion and way of life which turned their own country into the hell hole from which they fled.
This system was also accepted in part because progressives are addicted to the warm fuzzies. They need to feel that they are the good guys; warm, accepting open, and above all tolerant. Unlike those hard hearted cultural chauvinists who think that people should be free to make up heir own minds about who they worship or don’t and who think that women should be given the vote instead of cliterectomies.
Through millennia of development toleration of differing cultures has emerged as a core Western value. Other cultures don’t have that value, for many of them toleration is not a strength but a weakness. Therefore for the progressive we have to tolerate their intolerance, even if it means fundamentally altering the society which gave birth to tolerance because to do otherwise would be intolerant. Crazy or what?
That this amounts to practical racism is of course unacknowledged by the progressive. If I attempted to keep my wife indoors except when she was clad in head to toe shrouding and married my young daughters off to their cousins I would, quite rightly, be vilified. If someone with a differing religious background does this it is a ‘cultural practice,’ which whilst it may be regrettable to those moulded by a culture derived from dead white males, must be accepted as part of their rich, vibrant, colourful tradition. The progressive in effect says that we expect more from whites than from non-whites.
Multiculturalism is based on the specious philosophy of moral relativism which holds that nothing is absolutely right or wrong. Except of course for the idea that nothing is absolutely right or wrong.
Shakespeare put it this way “there is nothing absolutely good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” If we actually look at the play we find that Shakespeare gave those words to Hamlet, who was pretending to be insane when he said them. Which is to imply that moral relativism isn’t just crazy, it’s pretend crazy — because nobody is really crazy enough to believe it. Except perhaps for progressives.