The new ethnic group: American

The new ethnic group: American
: I’m more multiculti than I know. My mother’s side includes English, Irish, Scotch, German. My father’s side is, well, from the mountains of West Virginia and so we don’t so much have a family tree as family kudzu (there’s a clan rumor that my last name should be Reilly or Riley, we’re not sure). So I’ve never identified with the ethnic loyalists of America or, for that matter, Russia or Iraq, who identify themselves by their dead relatives rather than their living neighbors. There was a time when I thought I was supposed to be jealous of them, when I, like most of America, worried that I should be searching my Roots. But, instead, I resented the exclusion of their ethnic flag-waving; theirs were clubs I could not join and in this age, following the lessons we have learned in the last century, I thought we should have gotten past that.

I’m not alone.

Here’s Roger L. Simon shouting, “Identity politics is now reactionary!”

Here’s Michael J. Totten: “I don’t want to know. I don’t want to know because I don’t want to start caring about that sort of thing. I don’t want to find out I’m a part of a victim group so I can start feeling bad about something I’ve never felt bad about before. I don’t want to feel like I’m supposed to hold some old world grudge against other people who never did anything to me or my family.”

Here’s James Lileks: “I