We find, in many religions and the lore of many cultures, unusual beings, beasts, and creatures. Considered from a secular viewpoint, these translate into archetypes, to be either emulated or shunned. In contemporary pop culture, many are often adapted into fantasy and speculative fiction tales.

One such is the “skin-walker” of Navajo lore. Per Wikipedia, they are people who have “the ability to turn into, possess, or disguise themselves as an animal,” but the premise has been expanded in more than a few books, movies, and television shows to include disguising as other people.

Essayist and erstwhile college professor Joseph Epstein, recently “cancelled” by Northwestern for having the temerity to scold Jill Biden over her insistence on being referred to as “Doctor,” recently criticized the Biden administration’s promise to establish “the single most diverse cabinet, based on race, color, based on gender, that has ever existed in the United States of America.” His criticism lies in the “end unto itself” nature of Biden’s promise, for when a candidate’s “diversity” is of supreme priority, excellence will suffer:

In government, the value of diversity is often in conflict with the value of true merit, or of the real abilities of the people chosen to perform their jobs.

It is a given that Biden is going to select people who share his views and opinions on policy, on goals, on governance, and in worldview. He won the election, so it’s his right to do so. A Cabinet is an executive tool, a means for enacting the policies of the person the voters selected.

The problem lies in the false promise of “diversity,” echoed in Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s “wise latina” comment. While “diversity” may increase the likelihood that disparate life experiences are brought into the fold, it by no means offers what’s suggested: a diversity of viewpoints. It also subordinates excellence to secondary status.

Moreso, woke culture overtly rejects a diversity of viewpoints. This is clearly evident in the especial scorn heaped upon “diverse” individuals whose views are heterodox. They are treated as pariahs, apostates, and heretics, no matter that they are members of identity groups deemed to be oppressed.

The Social Justice crowd demands the equivalent of Navajo skin-walkers: people whose outward appearances range across a spectrum, but who are, internally/intellectually, all the same. This extends far beyond elected and appointed officials and other public figures, and into every corner of our culture.

That the Navajo skin-walker is a harmful individual is almost too convenient a coincidence. The ideology of today’s skin-walkers is at odds with that of a free and harmonious society.

Peter Venetoklis

About Peter Venetoklis

I am twice-retired, a former rocket engineer and a former small business owner. At the very least, it makes for interesting party conversation. I'm also a life-long libertarian, I engage in an expanse of entertainments, and I squabble for sport.

Nowadays, I spend a good bit of my time arguing politics and editing this website.

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