The endless debate about diversity misses the point, leaving its champions barking quite deliberately up the wrong tree. Diversity is indeed worth fighting for. Indeed, it is the source of much of the innovation needed for thriving economies and communities. What a shame that the diversity mongers do not understand their own cause.
What they have delivered is not diversity but enclaves, ghettoes, no-go areas, silos, inward looking ethnicities that ignore “the other”, that is the host communities, and ultimately bitterness, sullen resentment and a multi-faceted cultural barrenness. Basically, the quest for diversity is in the hands of the wrong people. These are “the identarians”, to use Giles Auty’s very useful phrase. The most common face of diversity — multiculturalism — has delivered everything except diversity, ironically.
The literature on innovation is a very useful starting place to explore the poverty of current diversity thinking. Sensible innovation scholars and popularisers recognise the obvious — that real innovation occurs where cultures, disciplines and modes of thinking collide. Literally collide. They confront “the other” and, if systemically nurtured, produce something new and valuable.
If the diversity mongers really believed in diversity and its benefits they would be cheering for assimilation. You see, assimilation forces cultures to interact. And it is that interaction which drives progress. Assimilation, wonderfully, makes us confront our “others”, and it does it routinely — a bit like marriage, actually.
Sheep farmers call this process ‘hybrid vigour”. The intermingling of ideas, approaches, cultures, worldviews, forces the clash of ideas that produces new insights and thinking. This is Innovation 101. It is, in fact, Popperian science. Diversity facilitates hypothesis testing! Diversity is only ever valuable if it is confrontational and interactive. And having a woman in the room, or a homosexual, or a non-European, may or may not advance diverse, confrontational thinking. Every scientist knows this. (Well, perhaps not climate scientists, who seem not to grasp anything but grants).
The diversity brigade doesn’t understand this. It actually doesn’t want the benefits of diversity, on reflection. It simply wants …. well, who the heck knows what the diversity brigade wants? What they seem to want is proportional representation within organisations, cities, regions, communities, institutions. Get that “other” in, and we will be right.
No, not really.
Thriving societies welcome, find a home for, and process good ideas. From wherever they come.
The classic “rainbow tick” type organisation generally portraysits conception of diversity via a clichéd photo of an Asian, a woman, a few young people and a token white male. How they depict the range of modern sexualities hasn’t yet been mastered by the marketing gurus, although a thick-wristed, prognathous-jawed “lady” or two would seem to be a popular start. How on earth does this bunch even approach the task of delivering the real benefits of diversity? The benefits of real diversity — diversity of thinking — flow from open society thinking, from everyone having permission to question things, from testing hypotheses.
Implementing mass immigration, embracing the homosexualisation of society, cheering the “other”, gets us no closer to real diversity. It is merely identarian cheering. Of course, all this is stating the blindingly obvious.
These folks don’t really care for diversity, as we know. They actually want sameness of views, cleverly disguised in a myriad of foreign faces, tattoed females with crew cuts and the forever young, with nary a “pale stale male” in sight. What a pity that this diversity combo delivers but about everything BUT diversity. Yes, genuine diversity is good, and we should champion it relentlessly. Just don’t leave it to the Gramsci-ites and Alinskyites to lead the charge. They won’t deliver diversity. Anything but.
Many years ago, a very young Peter Thiel, founder of PayPal and Trump supporter, all-round genius and, very oddly, a citizen of New Zealand, co-authored a book called The Diversity Myth. This was a detailed discourse on the impact of the diversity generation on American higher education. The outworking of this quite deliberate strategy of using diversity as a weapon to destroy core Western values is, ironically, to embed Orwellian groupthink on people, who, if allowed to explore genuine diversity, might actually develop co-created innovations for the benefit of all. We need to celebrate not “the other” but “the interaction with the other”.
If “the other” joins in, beautiful things will occur. But the diversity brigade doesn’t want a thriving society. They want us to die. you see, they are unreconstructed nihilists. Diversity is their cover for societal destruction.
The diversity brigade is perpetuating a myth. Let us call them on it.