The Future isn't Female; It's Human.
This past weekend, millions of people participated in the #womensmarch, a peaceful protest centered around furthering the conversation about women’s rights. Some were motivated by the pussy-grabbing Donald Trump, while others expressed solidarity for Her loss in the electoral college. But women, and by extension any protected class are missing the point: the future does not lie with any interest group. It lies in being an individual human.
Both gender and race are constructs. They were created, so we're told, by those in power to suppress those they fear. These constructs have been defined and refined over the years by social scientists. The science here isn't really science, it's historicism. The literature is filled with historic examples, yet the modern solutions center around some form of social compensation for past wrongs. Inherently, all social policies are aimed toward the past.
If we are to transcend racism, misogyny, transphobia, and homophobia, the only solution is to think beyond them. Is the future female, or is it human? Is it brown, or is it colorless? Is it heteronormative or on a spectrum? There is one theme that unites them all: individualistic humanism.
Without the ability to stand alone sans any affiliation to a class, we cease to have a cohesive social contract. It is impossible to get everyone to agree on what role government plays if every gender, sexuality, and race demand on being treated differently. We must begin to transcend these classes from a policy perspective if any permanent reconciliation among warring activist hashtags is to occur.
The #womensmarch showed the fungus of class interest. Millions of spores, each with their own partially mutated genetic code, dispersed across the world. Each of the spores has their own interest at stake. And if each of those spores were to grow into its own mushroom, there would be no room for any other plants. Our world, like a forest, requires a dynamism that humans seem incapable of adopting. We are not all created equal. We are not the same, and we will never have one common goal. The only way to achieve harmony is to realize it won't be anyone's ideal world.
In this sense, the women's march did not accomplish its goal because it had no singular goal. It is doubtful that anyone who wouldn't have been moved was moved by it. It's also probably true that many marching in DC may have had tickets and hotels for Her coronation. The nebulous and conflicting goals of the feminist movement are beginning to be nibbled at by the trans movement. Racially motivated groups will begin to cannibalize each other to the point of a modern-day version of the Three Fifths Clause. When all the classes are full from their intersectionality buffet, what comes next?
As humans continue to make advances in science and technology, we will continue to dissociate ourselves from what it means to be "human." Someone will be the first person to amputate their legs for much stronger cybernetic appendages. Someone will be the first person to implant their brain into robotic body. This may sound crazy, but we already sanction amputation if your genitalia doesn't match how you feel emotionally. And when we get here, will it still be subclasses of humans marching for rights? Or will it simply be humans vs. augmented humans?
The truth is you will need an entirely new legal structure for this type of progress. How long does one get Social Security in a robot body? Does Obamacare cover screw replacements in my bionic arm? How do we administer any form of standardization when, unlike race and gender, there are very real, physical differences between the classes?
There are examples of these policies at work in our system already. A universal school voucher system is a primary example: fund the students regardless of any other distinctive characteristic. It's not perfect, but it certainly is equitable. The heavy lifting will need to be done in programs like Social Security and Medicare, where we've built expectations for people's entire lives around what they are owed. Subsides, food stamps, bailouts, jobs, all focus on a specific class of people, which clips our connective social contract strings.
We're the land of the free, where everyone can be who they want to be and express themselves as such. That was the best part about the protests: they were non-violent and peaceful. The thousands of competing priorities they advocated for will only lead to further segmentation into a class that will need protecting. Until we realize that these measures are will only temporarily mitigate our coming reckoning with intersectionality, we will only be divided. The government can only enact policy; they cannot change the hearts and minds of anyone by their actions. When policies are aimed at rewarding or punishing specific groups, the unintended consequences are social discord. Until we begin to realize that the only agency and identity that is equitable and fair is that of the individual human, we're going to keep marching down the path of division. It seems that's what equality, tolerance and inclusion are about in 2017 anyway.