The disdain towards old White males has become the essence of the far-left. This current field of Democratic candidates in 2020 features many women, African Americans, Latinos, Asians, and people of the LGBTQ + community. But if you look at the most recent polling in the Democratic primaries, Senator Bernie Sanders and Former Vice President Joe Biden are in the lead. Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden are both White men (although Sanders is reform Jewish) and in their late 70’s. It is because intersectionality sounds good on paper, but most voters should and do value policies and experience over what minority someone is. However, intersectionality could take precedent as the election progresses. This occurred in the 2016 election, when some uneducated voters cast their ballot for Hillary Clinton, simply because she was a woman. Although most Clinton voters did not use her gender as reasoning, it was still a selling point.
In order for America to truly progress as a society, people should not use their race, gender, sexual orientation, or religion to appeal to voters. Although it may drive people to their campaign, it is stooping to a new low if a candidate has to use something outside their own thoughts on policy to garner votes. Using their group’s oppression as a card in a campaign shows a lack of substance and intellect because they are doing nothing but trying to get people to feel guilty (particularly White liberals) for the struggles they have allegedly been through, despite many Presidential candidates typically leading privileged lives since a young age. This is not devaluing any of their personal struggles, but the race for a high public office, such as the Presidency, should be about merit and ideas, not identity.
Even though a minority candidate may win a position of power, it does not always equate to justice and prosperity for that minority. President Barack Obama constantly promised to fix his hometown of Chicago, Illinois. But after eight years of being in office, nothing was done about the situation in Chicago and is still considered to be one of the most dangerous cities in the United States. Real progress for all minorities, regardless of what it is, needs to come from actions, not pity.
Intersectionality is damaging to the fabric of American democracy, because it assures that people can win an election with nothing but their identity, with potential disregard for all other qualifications. A strive towards equal representation in government should not come at the price of others, because of a historical record of oppression. When casting a ballot, the decision maker should be policies, not an individual’s identity.