The Principles of Diverse Diversity
The following are the Principles which define Diverse Diversity and explain its aims. They are necessarily subject to interpretation and it is possible for interpretations to conflict in practical application. This will be addressed in the discussion of Interpretative Principles below.
Diversity is a plural concept. Diverse Diversity is the freedom to express any opinion or identity in any manner that does not repress others.
Diverse Diversity neither condones nor condemns; it only permits. Permitted expression includes condoning or condemning the views of others provided there is no element of coercion or incitement.
Diverse Diversity distinguishes between people, ideas and activities. Ideas and activities can be criticised. People must never be subjected to shame, fear or violence.
Expression must not repress others, though it might oppose their ideas. All people must be free to express themselves, but not in a way which represses others.
Words have a range of meanings depending on context. No word should be considered inherently acceptable or unacceptable. Words must be interpreted according to the apparent intent behind their use.
Offence or a claim thereof must not be used to repress others. Offence is not indicative of repression unless the apparent intent of the person responsible were to cause offence.
Because Diversity is inherently diverse no one should attempt to impose a single definition. Such attempts are repressive.
Diverse Diversity is the freedom to be different. This can be expressed in two forms:
Freedom to express oneself including personality, opinions and loyalties,
Freedom from Repression by others.
These two expressions are closely identified because freedom to express implies freedom from repression and vice-versa. However, they also exist in tension because it is possible to express ones beliefs in words or actions which censor or intimidate another, and it is also possible to interpret the concept of intimidation so as to use it to censor others.
This tension has been used by Narrow Diversitists to impose Political Correctness and prevent real diversity. If Diverse Diversity is to protect itself and the population from that manipulation it needs to establish two Interpretative Principles:
- Freedom to express must never be used in a manner likely to deny the same freedom to others,
- Freedom from Repression must never be used to deny others the ability to express a properly argued opinion.
These are an expansion of Basic Principle 4. This should be achieved by requiring all opinions to be supported by sound arguments soundly based on proper foundations. A proper foundation is one that can be soundly derived from some kind of first principle accepted within the systemic context in which the argument is made. This could be an appeal to peer-reviewed research, to the policies of an organisation, to a constitutional document, to Scriptures or whatever else might be considered foundational in a particular context.
Of course, arguments might arise about the validity of these, and such arguments are valid so long as they respect the right of those holding such first principles to take their own decisions.
Arguments might lead to disagreement or disapproval of others, but this must never be expressed as vilification or with a degree of emotion likely to turn disapproval into vilification or lead to intimidation. It follows that argument can criticise but never demonise, arguments may be countered, but never shouted or howled down, because that would be denying the opponent’s freedom of expression.
It follows that in Diverse Diversity, people’s freedom is protected not by limiting the opinions that may be expressed, but by how they are expressed. Opinions which could be considered dangerously antisocial may be expressed, but not in a way which prevents the hearers assessing how dangerously antisocial they are, prevents opponents explaining why they are wrong, incites emotions likely to lead to violent action or reaction, or instills fear or shame in those subject to the opinion.
To put it another way, Diverse Diversity rejects the thesis that the way to prevent repetition of the terrible abuses of the early to mid 20th century is to prevent discrimination on the particular grounds chosen by the totalitarian regimes of that day. Rather, Diverse Diversity sees the activities perpetrated by those totalitarian regimes themselves as the problem. The evil was less that the Nazis singled out Jews, Roma, disabled people or homosexuals for persecution and mass murder than that they chose persecution and mass murder as their political method. The particular groups targeted were incidental to the evil. It was the targeting itself which was evil. It was not the particular lies with which the government deceived its citizens, but the fact they lied to their citizens and manipulated them with half truths. They roused the emotions of their populace with emotive speeches and spectacles which created a mob mentality and motivated people to do what no rational person should do.
These are the techniques that made these regimes dangerous and allowed them to perpetrate such evil, and these techniques have not been outlawed; rather, they are still in use today, as any glance at Prime Minister’s Questions will make very clear. Politicians have outlawed the symptoms, not the causes, because they still wish to use the same techniques today, which makes them as potentially dangerous now as they ever were. For it is not the tone of our politics, but the good will of individual politicians, which prevents them repeating the atrocities today. Sadly, there is no guarantee less scrupulous politicians will not emerge in future and we remain vulnerable.
Moreover, because politicians wish to treat the symptoms rather than the cause, in the process our freedoms are already being undermined little by little as they try to balance the aspirations of competing interested groups.
Diverse Diversity is about preserving our freedom by addressing the true causes of the problem and removing them so all can be free to be who they are, without fear of falling into a despised category by doing so.
This can be summed up in four simple slogans:
- All people to be respected
- All voices to be heard
- All ideas to be scrutinised
- All feelings to follow facts