You’ve heard Republican politicians scorn something they call “identity politics.” That cliché refers to political positions based on our concerns as members of the various social or cultural groups.
Republicans claim that identity-based positions inevitably disintegrate down to exclusive political alliances. That’s supposedly because some folks don’t identify with any social or cultural groups. Forget John Donne’s famous observation: “No man is an island.”
Apparently, Republicans believe each one of us is a separate island. Back in the real world, however; we belong to families, neighborhoods, congregations, workplaces and communities. Our relationships with others help us form identities. If there is a problem with identities in politics today it’s probably that our political parties are not recognizing all of them.
The Trump rebellion last year exposed that problem. The Democratic Party had lost touch with a couple of sizeable and significant groups: rural communities and working people. Republicans filled that void by making superficial promises. Neither party has a realistic rural-communities or workers platform. That’s got to change.