I gotta go but I want to throw out a quick thread on the history of identity politics. It’s so important. Please read to the end before commenting.
‘Identity politics’ means understanding that many people are marginalized *by their identities*. Their identity is used as a weapon to marginalize them from the economy and justice. 2/
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. started his career in civil rights working against segregation.
After segregation was found unconstitutional and the VRA and CRA II were passed, he turned his attention to other struggles. 3/
They included the crime of the Vietnam War and economic injustice - broadly as it affects everyone but *specifically* as if affects many people marginalized by their identities. 4/
The last few years of his life were spent working with Native American, Mexican, and Chicano leaders to learn more about the issues that impact *them* and to build together a combined movement of poor people 5/
That would appeal to white poor people AND join marginalized people in addressing broad economic injustice AND the different challenges of different communities.
It’s what’s commonly known today as “intersectionalism”. 6/
Here are some of the demands from the Poor People’s Movement. It was NOT just “social democracy cures all ills.
Ugh. Finding images stored on my phone slows me way down. 7/
After MLK died people started using his words to manipulate his message.
Some right wingers use a selection of his words to push “I don’t see color”. To aggressively pretend racism doesn’t exist.
This was NOT his message. 9/
Some left winger use a selection of his words to push trickle-down civil rights. They claim he “evolved” past “identity” to socialism. They make this claim by erasing the aspect of the PPM that was *specifically* about identity. 10/
Bernie Sanders was one of those white leftists. Watch *any time* he speaks about MLK. ANY FUCKING TIME, he actively erases that work, starting in the early 1970s. He was quick on that anti-marginalized people messaging. 11/
So, in 1978 a group of Black feminist socialists wrote a statement in which they coined the term ‘identity politics.’ 12/
Key section of that statement (I encourage you to read the whole thing)
It is saying that the left needs to stop demanding the service of people marginalized by identity in their fight unless the needs of those people are central to their fight. 14/
Bernie Sanders was a keyed in leftist. This statement made waves. He knew of it.
Since that time, he’s been ranting against “identity politics” and he knows *exactly what it means. 15/
Bernie was an obscure politician from Vermont until he was uplifted by the writings of people like Ames, Taibbi, and Greenwald.
Identity politics has been long despised by the misogyny bros of journalism. 16/
So what did they do? They did the right wing language manipulation trick: they taught the kids that identity politics is just “voting for a woman just because she’s a woman” and they taught the kids that BIPOC intersectional progressivism is to be mocked. 17/
And that the “real” progressives™️ are the misogyny bros and the MLK erasing white hegemony leftist from Vermont.

It’s a mind-f*ck just like right wing messaging is a mind-f*ck.

And the message mind-f*ckers should receive is always “f*ck off”.
The end. Gotta pick up my kid.
By the way, this book is so good
PS. Quick reread I noticed that I wrote ‘Mexican’ and not ‘Mexican American’. Apologies. I wrote this in a hurry.
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