A common tactic employed by leftists is to accuse their enemies of being on “the wrong side of history.” When I toured UC Santa Cruz around 9 years ago, I recall seeing a mural juxtaposing old school Jim Crow bigotry with current conservative hostility towards homosexual marriage. The image must have caught on, because I could easily find it online.
The implication is that history will harshly judge opponents of homosexual rights, just as we passionately denounce Jim Crow racism. Such logic is now being applied to transsexual rights; check out this segment from John Oliver – the newest liberal comedic cult figure – where he asserts (skip to 16:15) that history will not be kind to those of us who oppose this newest civil rights movement. In so many words, if we don’t enthusiastically embrace the left’s agenda, then people like us will be reviled for all eternity.
Will we? The arrogant leftist notion that the arc of the universe bends towards justice (ie. what they want) is predicated on the belief that Western liberalism will remain hegemonic. However, I suspect that this dominant liberal narrative will erode as China and other Asian nations continue to rise. We already know that Asian countries have no use for the kind of bizarre identity politics running amok in the West.
In fact, given how pervasive intense nationalism is in Asia, I suspect that Asia’s ascendancy – combined with the West’s demise – will alter the way we view history. Such a paradigm shift will not be kind to the likes of John Oliver. Future Asian historians will be nonplussed upon learning that Americans placed a higher premium on transsexual rights than nationalism or a strong economy. They will also shake their heads and chuckle when reading about how historical white figureheads such as Joe Biden celebrated the impending minority status of their own people. They’ll wonder why the most dominant group in human history threw it all away in the name of quixotic ideals.
They will, with amusement and contempt, consign the Western left to the wrong side of history.