You’ll find pieces in almost every major paper right now praising the benefits of diversity. I totally embrace this sentiment. Still, many of these writers seem to espouse a very superficial sense of diversity and a deep sense of conformity. The opinion goes something like the following: states, communities should no longer identify through race or culture but ‘shared values.’ I have to reject this line of thinking because what these commentators really want is a kind of political consensus with a diverse package of looks, sounds, and cuisine. I like that newcomers have different ideas just as much as I like when folks who’ve been here a while have different ideas.
I hope the future belongs to people like Malala Yousafzai– she courageously stands up for women’s rights, but I suspect she doesn’t ‘share’ all the ‘values’ of many of these liberal, ‘sex-positive’ feminist writers. (I don’t think hook-up culture makes anyone happy) I’m going to learn more about Malala, because I’m inspired by people with grit and unique, hopeful social visions.
What we need is more diversity, more debate, more thinking about what a good life looks like, and that means more people who don’t fit in and will challenge the status quo. I don’t want ‘shared values’; I want freedom and everyone looking for the light.