Salvo 08.03.2023 6 minutes

The Department of Racism

Man getting punched in the face

Christopher Rufo makes the intentions of the DEI vanguard all too clear.

Into this scorcher of a summer comes a scorcher of a book that is at once a blistering manifesto and a blunt surgical diagnosis of the terminal condition ailing this country. I can describe Christopher Rufo’s new insta-bestseller in one word: clarity. There’s been so much written about the “roots of wokeism” and how we ended up here, but America’s Cultural Revolution is a machete through the thickets. After reading his book, I finally get it. I can see the whole smoking battlefield in a glance, piled with the corpses of every once-great meritocratic institution.

At last, I can see clearly exactly how this multi-decade psyop came together—and how it succeeded so wildly.

Allow me to attempt briefly to summarize the path to total victory that wokeism took. It started as the fever dreams of Marxist loonies on the fringe of the academy, whose spectacularly stupid ideas infiltrated the professoriate by masquerading as “theory.” One by one, university classrooms succumbed to the irresistible pull of this One Ring of Power Relations Among Aggrieved Minorities. Once the professors and the students were in its thrall, the bureaucracy caved, too. Then the model was applied to the government, another elite bureaucracy upon which the virus could easily take hold.

The image in my mind as I read this was of ice-cold North Atlantic seawater spilling over each watertight compartment in the Titanic: flooding the first one, then spilling over into the second, then the third, and so on, until the mighty ship buckled under the weight and sank below the waves.

Will our ship of state have the same fate?

Slowly, then all at once, the takeover marched to the finish line. The shaggy, fusty academic theory language had been replaced with simplified, easy-to-spell corporate acronyms like “DEI” that sounded vague, friendly, and benign.

The end result is mass, easy-to-digest cultural indoctrination in the form of YA novels, TikTok videos, and Barbie. Even the soft indoctrination—the casual race-swapping of a beloved Dutch fairy tale character like the Little Mermaid, say—is an inheritance from those rabid anarchists in the ’60s.

DEI, as Rufo points out, means exactly the opposite of what they pretend it does. Diversity means no whites. Inclusion means exclude whites. Equity means everyone gets a piece but whites and other disfavored groups (Christians, pro-lifers, Asians, straight men, etc.).

This has worked so well for them that it had me wondering whether our only way out is to follow their path.

The book is really a meticulous exposure of what is essentially the Left’s Final Solution for their enemies: whites, straights, trads, families, religious people, Bill of Rights appreciators, conservatives, and meritocrats. No, there will be no extermination camps (although if Lucky Cap’n Jack Smith of the U.S.S. Indictment gets his way, who knows?). Instead there will be a slow but unstoppable bleeding of morale, will, and American ideals. Excellence, merit, and objective standards are the main targets; you and your kids will be shut out of higher ed and high-paying jobs in corporate America, by design. This is a feature, and not a bug, of the DEI bombardment.

In the chapter titled “DEI and the End of the Constitutional Order,” I discovered a terrifying new idea I had not yet heard about. I had no clue that our preening, unelected Dauphin of Anti-racism, esteemed MacArthur Genius Grant winner Ibram X. Kendi, plans to enshrine DEI into law right through the back door. His proposed constitutional amendment

would establish and permanently fund the Department of Anti-racism (DOA) comprised of formally trained experts on racism and no political appointees. The DOA would be responsible for preclearing all local, state and federal public policies to ensure they won’t yield racial inequity, monitor those policies, investigate private racist policies when racial inequity surfaces, and monitor public officials for ex- pressions of racist ideas. The DOA would be empowered with disciplinary tools to wield over and against policymakers and public officials who do not voluntarily change their racist policy and ideas.

“In other words,” explains Rufo, “the scope and power of the new ‘Department of Anti-racism’ would be nearly unlimited. In effect, it would become a fourth branch of government, unaccountable to voters, that would have the authority to veto, nullify, or suspend any law in any jurisdiction in the United States. It would mean an end to the system of federalism and to the law-making authority of Congress.”

DOA? Literally dead on arrival.

The Department of Anti-racism would really be the Department of Racism, or more correctly, the Department of Reparations. In the end, the grievances of American blacks will be paid in full only by the complete and total dismantling of the country that wronged their ancestors. Can’t wait!

It’ll be like being forced to play Blackjack at the Luxor Hotel in Vegas, the worst casino on the planet, forever, and every dealer’s shoe is filled with nothing but race cards. The House will always win!

My word, that is alarming! Hey, can we like, not let this happen? But this is exactly where we are heading, as Rufo warns.

If we ever get another president from our side into office (doubtful), the first thing to do is create a federal Department of Racism. It won’t actually be called that, but that’s what the Left will call it. But this department would be in charge of enforcing colorblind meritocracy at all public institutions and publicly funded organizations.

This department would be the Anti-Woke Police. It would be the de-Baathification of our depraved universities, public schools, teacher’s unions, corporate boards, and every other government agency.

Because Rufo is right. If we refuse to stop DEI from literally overthrowing the American way of life on the ground, then Christopher Rufo can write a thousand books, and The American Mind can publish a thousand Peachy screeds, and we will still lose.

All hope is not yet lost, however! As he writes in the Introduction, “Although it may seem that America’s cultural revolution has entered a period of dominance, the space between its ambitions and its outcomes has left open the possibility of reversal. The simple fact is that society under the critical theories does not work. The revolution is not a path to liberation; it is an iron cage.”

Society isn’t working—that’s true. It’s also by design. The revolution is an iron cage, and they’re saving you a seat in it.

Let this book be the shot heard ‘round the country this summer—and pray that the right people are listening.

The American Mind presents a range of perspectives. Views are writers’ own and do not necessarily represent those of The Claremont Institute.

The American Mind is a publication of the Claremont Institute, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to restoring the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life. Interested in supporting our work? Gifts to the Claremont Institute are tax-deductible.

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