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California Women's March Canceled for Being 'Overwhelmingly White'

Modern leftist activism is mired in infighting between the most marginalized and their allies. Blame intersectionality.

WMJuan Carlos Lucas/ZUMA Press/NewscomOrganizers of a planned Women's March in Eureka, California, cancelled an event due to concerns that too many white people would show up—which is a pretty damning indictment of intersectionality, the ubiquitous yet contradictory philosophy of the modern activist left.

A rally had been scheduled for January 19, but Women's March leaders aborted their plans because "up to this point, the participants have been overwhelmingly white, lacking representation from several perspectives in our community," according to a press release. "This decision was made after many conversations between local social-change organizers and supporters of the march."

This news attracted much derision, and deservedly so. For one thing, the disproportionate white involvement might simply reflect the fact that Eureka is about 75 percent white, according to U.S. Census data. For another, leftists often claim that white people are responsible for President Donald Trump's victory in 2016—inexplicably, white women are held in particular contempt, even though they vote Democratic more often than white men—and need to change their attitudes. But here's some white folks expressing enthusiasm about joining their comrades of color in the #Resistance, only to be told, Well, maybe you should stay home.

The Eureka incident lends itself to a kind of Eureka! insight about the problems with intersectionality, which has become the dominant intellectual theory of the left in the three decades since sociologist Kimberle Crenshaw first proposed it. According to intersectionality, various forms of oppression are distinct yet interrelated, and these forms stack: A black man is more oppressed than a white man, a black woman is more oppressed than a black man, a gay black woman is even more oppressed, and so on.

There's nothing innately wrong with such analysis, but adherents of intersectionality also tend to believe that the oppressed are the sole experts on the subject of their own oppression. At the same time, it is not their job to educate you—a line parroted by many activists, particularly on college campuses, when they are questioned. As a result, intersectionality in practice often means that some activists expect well-intended liberals to sit down, step back, and defer to the expertise of the most marginalized people. But those people might not be well-positioned to lead a mass #Resistance movement—they may have disabilities, poor mental health, or lack of access to financial means, which are all stackable categories of oppression—and they might even expect the cis white hetero males to take a turn doing the work. It's really hard to square all these circles.

That's one important conclusion of my book, Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump, which I am pleased to announce will be released in 2019. (It's already available for preorder here.) I interviewed tons of activists about their goals, motivations, and beliefs, and one of the most common recurring themes was infighting caused by intersectionality. As one young activist woman told me, she absolutely hated the 2017 Women's March that occurred the day after Trump's inauguration, in which half a million people took to the streets of Washington, D.C., to protest the president. Why? You guessed it: too white.

Photo Credit: Juan Carlos Lucas/ZUMA Press/Newscom

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  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    All are oppressed, but some are more oppressed than others.

  • SQRLSY One||

    So do more protesting white women need to wear blackface? Would surgically slanted eyes suffice, or are far easterners not oppressed enough? Wait... All protesting women are "protestants", right, and that by definition excludes Catholics, Buddhists, Muslims, Scientologists, and many other diverse life-forms, right? So just say NO to protesting by protestants where non-protestants are excluded!!!

    But now wait-wait, double-wait here, HOW can we even get diversity among women anyway, even short of the "all protesters are protestants" issue? Are they not ALL pink and wet inside, to begin with, anyway?

  • damikesc||

    Given that they are sexually excited by being miserable...yeah, they are all likely pink and wet inside.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    Eeeewwww!

  • Naaman Brown||

    How would surgically slanted eyes help?
    Orientals tend to have higher IQs and do better in school and academia.
    They are doupleplusungood in the Brave New World Order of angry stupid people.

  • shortviking||

    Don't be silly. Surgery isn't necessary. Just duct tape their eyes slanted.

  • Teddy Pump||

    No, the Trans Women are not all pink & wet inside!...Heck, they do not even have an "Inside"!

  • Zeb||

    Everybody has an inside.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Good post. I thank Soave for explaining intersectionality (usually I'm a bit disappointed in his articles as IMHO he lacks a good understanding of libertarianism).

    Yes, everyone is oppressed by the government when the government forcefully takes money from us (among other things they force us to do). The big problem with intersectionality, is they don't seem to distinguish between oppression by government force, and when people use their freedom of association to not associate with others they find offensive. If I don't like the smelly guy speaking curse words loudly and choose to avoid him (including not baking a cake for him) he might call it oppression. IMHO, it's nothing but social pressure to conform to social rules about being respectful to others. As for SJWs attacking my beliefs, I find that disrespectful, and using their rules I'll say they're oppressing me, so by their rules, they should shut up or leave me alone.

  • Enemy of the State||

    ^^^ Ha! You win Q.U.T.^^^^

  • Rockabilly||

    Comrades, they have the white privileges and don't celebrate our diversity.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    For another, leftists often claim that white people are responsible for President Donald Trump's victory in 2016—inexplicably, white women are held in particular contempt, even though they vote Democratic more often than white men—and need to change their attitudes.

    White women might vote correctly (meaning, for Democrats) more often than white men, but exit polls still show Drumpf beat Clinton among white women in 2016. Which is just inexcusable. White women who vote Republican are voting to uphold white supremacy even though it's ultimately counterproductive for them since the GOP is simultaneously waging a WAR ON WOMEN. But this is nothing new. People voting against their own self interest is a major problem in this country.

    At holiday dinner I explained to my white female relatives how terrible things are for them under Drumpf, who is literally turning the US into The Handmaid's Tale. Most of them didn't get the reference (no Hulu subscription, I guess?) and tried to change the subject. But at least I gave them something to ponder.

  • Naaman Brown||

    Maybe you should have referenced "The Walking Dead" or "The Purge" movie series which apparently have more viewers.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    50 Shades of Gray?

  • mpercy||

    That's because they're more realistic than THT.

  • Mock-star||

    They dont have Hulu subscriptions because of our terrible economy, of course.

  • MoreFreedom||

    "At holiday dinner I explained to my white female relatives how terrible things are for them under Drumpf, who is literally turning the US into The Handmaid's Tale."

    I've yet to see a single example of Trump reducing freedoms in the US. Unlike Obama who forced us to buy health insurance from government approved insurers, taking away our freedom of choice for health insurance.

    Seems to me, you're one of those radicals having a panic attack in the age of Trump.

  • Enemy of the State||

    You apparently do not import steel, aluminum, washing machines or lots of stuff from the latest Evil Empire aka China...

  • VinniUSMC||

    You can still get those things, and are not forced to buy either from China, or from Not-China.

    Fail.

  • Zeb||

    So more taxation doesn't reduce freedom now?

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    I would like to know from where I can buy steel that is neither China nor not-China.

  • $park¥ The Misanthrope||

    Women's March leaders aborted their plans

    Zing!

  • Joe M||

    This is why intersectionality will fail. These so-called marginalized people will continue to marginalize themselves even more.

  • Naaman Brown||

    If marginalized minorities keep dividing, you could end up with marginalized minorities of one oppressed by everyone else on the planet. Heck of a way to build a mass movement.

  • juris imprudent||

    Intersectionality will continue until you divide by zero.

  • Shockerengr||

    At which point it becomes infinite! Think of the possibilities!

  • Cloudbuster||

    A number divided by zero isn't infinite, it's undefined.

  • JWatts||

    Per calculus, a number divided by an ever smaller denominator approaches infinity and thus dividing by zero approaches infinity.

  • Zeb||

    Yes, but that's a limit, not actually division by zero.

  • Shockerengr||

    At which point it becomes infinite! Think of the possibilities!

  • Earth Skeptic||

    Or maybe its like the Highlander: "There can be Only One". So who is the most intersectionally oppressed/powerful?

  • a ab abc abcd abcde abcdef ahf||

    Sounds like that old joke about finding the most uninteresting person in the world, which immediately makes them interesting; rinse, repeat, never end.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    If we behead them, can we take their quickening?

  • BlueStarDragon||

    "If marginalized minorities keep dividing, you could end up with marginalized minorities of one oppressed by everyone else on the planet."

    That was called a nerd but they have redefined it and now we are just creepy and weirdos. Never ever let the left into your subgroup,religion or cultured. But most off all never in your politics. They are just the party of pure hatred and jealousy they ruin every thing they touch.

  • Brian||

    As their limit approaches infinity, their ultimate goal is to vanish into individuals.

    I, for one, wish them Godspeed, and recognize that, no, I cannot educate them, and it's not their job to educate me.

  • Eddy||

    "This is why intersectionality will fail. These so-called marginalized people will continue to marginalize themselves even more."

    Ha ha, with all that infighting among the so-called Bolsheviks and Mensheviks, those radicals will never achieve anything, lol!

  • Zeb||

    The great thing about intersectionality is that it really points out the absurdity of the "who's more oppressed" game. Yet no one playing that game seems to notice.

  • Rich||

    Organizers of a planned Women's March in Eureka, California, cancelled an event due to concerns that too many white people would show up

    and that too many pink hats would be worn.

  • damikesc||

    The Left, as we know, HATES people being judged by their skin color alone.

    CA --- home of the NPC,

  • Ordinary Person||

    It's ironic and fucking sad. They can't see how close they are to racists. It's the same mentality.

  • damikesc||

    The farthest left and the farthest right tend to stand next to each other on ton of things.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    On the political spectrum extreme Left and extreme right are the most authoritarian.

    Libertarianism is in the center as the most free with a tiny and limited government.

  • Ron||

    its like a clock the right is at 3 the left is at 9 at 12 are the libertarians and at 6 is the nazis and "enviro feminist anti-fa wackos".

  • Azathoth!!||


    The farthest left and the farthest right tend to stand next to each other on ton of things.

    No.

    They don't.

    This 'U', horseshoe, circle or Hihn's Left+Right = Zero idea is idiocy.

    If they're both moving in a collectivist, totalitarian, authoritarian direction they're both on the 'left'. If Republicans start supporting collectivist, totalitarian, authoritarian policies they're moving 'leftward'--they don't get to drag that shit onto the 'right'.

    Collectivism is 'leftist'. It is the first step on the path. If you go that way you're not on the 'right' anymore.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Exactly correct. This is why, by definition, the nazis were a leftist regime. Given their collectivist policies and adherence to a variation of marxist principals (fascism).

  • Peter Duncan||

    I'm a lesbian trapped in a man's body.

    I was so looking forward to participating in this march.

    Sad.

  • Gaear Grimsrud||

    If you're white you'd have been at the back of the line anyway.

  • juris imprudent||

    Oh c'mon Robby, was the "too white" activist white herself? You can't just set up the punchline and leave us hanging.

  • NealAppeal||

    To be sure, you are going to have to buy the book.

  • Ecoli||

    My out rage meter is pegged.

    Eureka is a lovely placed and is a preferred destination for the homeless. The brushy roadside is a warren of America's poor.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    I see what you did there.

  • A Lady of Reason||

    Ha! They're tearing apart their own constituency!
    https://aladyofreason.wordpress.com/

  • a ab abc abcd abcde abcdef ahf||

    As a result, intersectionality in practice often means that some activists expect well-intended liberals to sit down, step back, and defer to the expertise of the most marginalized people. But those people might not be well-positioned to lead a mass #Resistance movement—they may have disabilities, poor mental health, or lack of access to financial means, which are all stackable categories of oppression—and they might even expect the cis white hetero males to take a turn doing the work.

    Guess they never heard of comparative advantage.
    Entertaining mumbo jumbo, to be sure.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Just keep being idiots. That will eventually solve all of your first world problems I'm sure.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Just keep being idiots. That will eventually solve all of your first world problems I'm sure.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    The Democratic Party is in serious trouble if this is the prevailing thinking among lefties.

  • Brandybuck||

    This is a movement dominated by white women, led by white women, full of books written by white women, taught by white women at women colleges overflowing with white women and typified by memes showing white women screaming at the camera. So it's no surprise to find the movement full of white women.

    Modern liberalism is indeed the "White Woman's Burden".

  • Agammamon||

    There's nothing innately wrong with such analysis . . .

    Yes there is.

    To start with - it ignores individuals in favor of sweeping generalizations of classes based on nothing more than irrelevant physical attributes like skin color.

  • Trainer||

    Thank you for pointing this out- I was thinking the same thing. It's wrong and trying to be nice by saying it isn't is just bad journalism. And bad libertarianism.

  • ||

    That's what stood out for me as well.

    Robby always finds a way to add a perplexing statement to an otherwise important topic he covers fairly well.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Exactly. At times I think Soave either does not understand the philosophical objections to identity politics or does not understand the meaning of the sentences he puts together to attempt to give a benefit of the doubt to that side.

  • Fk_Censorship||

    Soave doesn't even understand the possessive "its" (it has no apostrophe!), judging from his tweets.

  • DaveSs||

    So, aren't they just assuming the racial identity of all those participants based solely on appearance?

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Woke people dont call that Racism.

  • Curly4||

    That is so yesterday. In today's world a person gender, race and any other identification is all of choice so many of these so called white women could be black and they could also be men!

  • Ron||

    a black woman is more oppressed than a black man. False
    due to Affirmative action a business gets a point for hiring a black man or a point for hiring a woman but if they hire a black woman then they get two points hence companies will hire a black woman before a black man, the black man is pushed to the side. Laws that only hurt

  • Curly4||

    So because to the law companies are discriminating white men then white women then black men all to hire a black woman.

  • MSimon||

    The not so smart are intentionally burdened. Especially in math class.

    Dumb people don't get hired to design airplanes and rockets.

    It is an outrage.

    We need a dumb liberation movement.

  • a ab abc abcd abcde abcdef ahf||

    Do you mean dumb (liberation movement) or (dumb liberation) movement? We already have many examples of one of those.

  • CptNerd||

    Parentheses are oppressing the punctuationally challenged!

  • mpercy||

    Both or either. It's fluid.

  • Eddy||

    "We need a dumb liberation movement."

    A dumb movement which *&^% loves science.

  • Mickey Rat||

    We do. It is called democratic socialism.

  • Curly4||

    Everyone knows that there CANNOT BE a woman's march with a majority of white women. These white women don't represent the needs of women. So the only logical action to take it to cancel it.

  • Butler T. Reynolds||

    If they had any brains then they'd reach Rand's conclusion. But nah.

    "..a majority has no right to vote away the rights of a minority; the political function of rights is precisely to protect minorities from oppression by majorities (and the smallest minority on earth is the individual)."

  • Erisian||

    Let's hear it for Ayn Rand: the smallest minority on earth is the individual, one cannot claim to be for minority rights if one does not support individual rights.

  • loki||

    "California Women's March Cancelled for being ' Overwhelmingly White"

    Bahahahahahahahahahaha!

  • flyfishnevada||

    In Eureka, CA, white women that would actually attend that rally = drug addicts and the homeless.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Leftists believe they're oppressed. Their solution? Government dominance over all things, so that they'll be even more oppressed.

  • Variant||

    Stop. Caring. About. Skin color. Please!

  • CptNerd||

    I live by the first two words.

  • Fk_Censorship||

    But, more importantly, are you a white woman?

  • ||

    There seems to be a weakness in their argument. If whites control everything then shouldn't efforts be made to include them in the conversation to foster change? They seem to want to uproot the system by all means necessary with no input from whites. Hence, all protests must contain a certain quota of aggrieved victims. It's all so menacingly retarded and illogical.

    It's a recipe for disaster and condemned to fail.

  • ByteRot||

    Not to mention, if they succeed and achieve their desires, and whites and men (and insufficiently intersectional women and PoCs!) are excluded from policy-making and silenced so that the oppressed can speak...

    When are those silenced to make room for the oppressed now oppressed? And who decides when we've reached that point? The people still allowed to talk? Are we to rely on their reverse wokeness and benevolence to step aside -- especially after swallowing the argument that we can't trust whites to do the same with the power they have? By their own logic, only the men, the whites, the insufficiently intersectional minorities have the perspective to understand their own oppression by the intersectional. Right?

    It's so twisted, contradictory, and circular.

  • loki||

    By the end of this the only one left marching will be a transgender Mexican/African undocumented amputee midget sexual misconduct surviving single mother of twelve.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    It will still be a racist.

  • mpercy||

    Which of the following statements are found on the Communist Party USA website and which are found on the Women's March website?

    We believe in an economy powered by transparency, accountability, security and equity. All women should be paid equitably, with access to affordable childcare, sick days, healthcare, paid family leave, and healthy work environments. All workers – including domestic and farm workers, undocumented and migrant workers - must have the right to organize and fight for a living minimum wage.

    Women still face a considerable differential in wages for work of equal or comparable value. They confront barriers to promotion, physical and sexual abuse, continuing unequal workload in home and family life, and male supremacist ideology perpetuating unequal and often unsafe conditions. The constant attacks on social welfare programs severely impact single women, single mothers, nationally and racially oppressed women, and all working class women.

    We firmly declare that LGBTQIA Rights are Human Rights and that it is our obligation to uplift, expand and protect the rights of our gay, lesbian, bi, queer, trans or gender non-conforming brothers, sisters and siblings.

    We must unite lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and straight people; professionals and intellectuals; seniors; and the disabled; and the mass peoples movements including the peace, environmental, health care, education, housing, and other movements.

  • mpercy||

    What if large number of the biologically white women all identify as black women?

  • Azathoth!!||

    But here's some white folks expressing enthusiasm about joining their comrades of color in the #Resistance, only to be told, Well, maybe you should stay home.

    Joining their 'comrades of color'? Joining?

    The white people ARE the #Resistance. The others are tokens. Props to give their moronic ideas added weight by being able to call all who try to thwart them 'racist'.

  • Rob Misek||

    Why was it billed as a women's march?

    They're obviously more concerned about race. Fucking racists.

    Women are so fucking stupid

  • loveconstitution1789||

    +1

  • Moo Cow||

    Your link doesnt go to the "Press Release." It goes to a Sinclair Broadcasting story.

  • Azathoth!!||

    When you try to get to the press release it redirects you to that.

  • Uncle Jay||

    I love it when politically correct liberal idiots cannibalize their own.

  • Get To Da Chippah||

    From the linked article:

    The group said it is exploring holding an event in March to celebrate International Women's Day. Anyone interested in helping organize these events are welcome and encouraged to attend.

    Presumably unless too many white people show up. Then they'll do the woke thing and cancel planning the event.

  • Cloudbuster||

    Rachel Dolezal could not be reached for comment (because she changed her name and nobody can be bothered to remember what it is).

  • Fk_Censorship||

    Latrina Jones?
    Shanice Williams?
    Déjà Abdul-Kareem?
    Aleesha Duckworth?
    Just some guesses...

  • Trollificus||

    I think it was to Plumquanda Watkins.

  • Presskh||

    Proves how stupid many leftist white women are for continuing to be led like sheep, while being openly disrespected by their so-called leaders.

  • Trollificus||

    The "leaders" are using Neg Theory on them.

    "You're not really as woke as I thought you were in the bar last night."
    "Do you think you could practice, like, not speaking when people of color are in the room?"
    "Oh. 'Working for a Sunnyvale startup.". Uh-huh. How it is."

  • ||

    Say what you will -- but this shit's effective.

    These guilty white activists are making me hate white people as much as they do.

  • posmoo||

    "There's nothing innately wrong with such analysis"

    you're a fucking moron, Robby.

  • Liberty Lover||

    Or it could be Minority women are just better at recognizing BS than white women?

  • Sig40||

    Further evidence that the self-described "left," just like the self-described "right," has absolutely no idea what it stands for anymore. Both are trying to live up to cartoonish caricatures of what they think they should be. It's time to burn this whole useless "left vs right" false dichotomy that has poisoned and polarized our entire political discourse to the ground and rebuild.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Those who try to divide freedom with coercion (religious and lay socialists) are the Left in an upright Diamond Nolan Chart. Those who realize freedom is indivisible and are for it are in the top square of the Nolan chart, and those who prefer coercion are in the bottom square with the totalitarians.

  • Sig40||

    A great example of perpetuating exactly what I'm talking about - thanks.

    Until we get past this moronic and overly simplistic "left vs right" BS, we're going to continue to circle the drain. So much of this is completely manufactured (by both sides) to keep us divided and polarized, and to think that "left" or "right" are the only two options for us to identify with. But the reality is there are no convenient and easy definitions of "left" just like there aren't any of "right," either. Just take a tour of the country, and look at regional differences, and look at how people respond to actual issues, rather partisan political wedge tactics. Let's quit playing their game. We are Libertarians - and that means we defy the current attempts at creating a paradigm meant for 5 year olds.

  • Miter Broller||

    They're dividing and conquering themselves and it's a beautiful thing to watch.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Does this explain the avid interest in importing undocumented Latinos? Eight out of ten Latinos (outside of Uruguay) are brainwashed by the Pope iv Rome to vote to send men with guns to ban abortion!

  • NoVaNick||

    Yeah, its rich to see that these women marchers are almost 99% privileged white women, I mean there must be at least one other Rachel Dolezal out there somewhere, who could pretend to be non-white. For the rest, I knew a lot of these types in college back in the early 90s who were all chanting shit like "all men are rapists", they disappeared for 25 years or so, then woke up the day after Trump won and realized that their life had no purpose, so they had to find it by protesting. Otherwise, where would they find the time?

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Hate Whitey NOW!"

  • Liberty Lover||

    No one has to hate these white women, because as you can see they hate themselves.

  • Trollificus||

    Well...we don't actually HAVE to, of course. But it often seems like an awfully good idea.

  • JWatts||

    "According to intersectionality, various forms of oppression are distinct yet interrelated, and these forms stack: A black man is more oppressed than a white man, a black woman is more oppressed than a black man, a gay black woman is even more oppressed, and so on. .... There's nothing innately wrong with such analysis..."

    Bullshit!

    It's completely wrong. It's ranking people by their race and sex. So, it's inherently racist and sexist.

  • Rob Misek||

    So women have deleloped an oppression ranking chart and stereotypically applied it to people based on their race and sex.

    And you're only invited to certain functions if you're oppressed enough.

    Seems kinda backward and hypocritical. That's a woman's contribution for you.

    Maybe they all ought to wear burkas and walk 10 paces behind men.

  • ClosetedConservative||

    Insane! They're tearing apart thier own constituency!

  • ClosetedConservative||

    Insane! They're tearing apart thier own constituency!

  • ClosetedConservative||

    Insane! They're tearing apart thier own constituency!

  • ClosetedConservative||

    Insane! They're tearing apart thier own constituency!

  • ClosetedConservative||

    Insane! They're tearing apart thier own constituency!

  • ClosetedConservative||

    I apologize for the repeat comment! I didn't see it went through! Oops! Feel free to delete the duplicates!

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