Against Multicultural Oppression

There must be a stop to the current trend in which relativism is labelled under the umbrella of multiculturalism, which in its turn is almost wholly unquestioned because anyone who dares question such a doctrine is held open to vicious accusations of racism. Notice, by the way, how these dogmas are never so publicly and stridently reviled as the basic beliefs of the Christian faith. I am troubled by how ardently these orthodoxies of political “progressivism” are put forth at the expense of truth, how quick people are to dismiss faith in Jesus Christ as something Western and thus as necessarily an instrument of oppression.

If continued, such a formula, disseminated in ethnic studies departments everywhere, can only contribute to the stifling of reasoned civil discourse in favour of irrational suspicion of public exercise of “Western” faith. There must be a context in which to work before one can know how to respect other cultures. If I cannot respect my own culture, how can I respect other cultures? Multiculturalism will not cure second-generation Asian-Americans’ disregard for their ethnic cultures: it will only create a bland atmosphere under which lies a dangerous political correctness. Come now, let us reason together. Dead white males are not evil, nor are their literature and values to be dumped into the dustbin just because some sinful aspects of the culture created inexcusable injustices, nor is it productive to indulge in a hip, self-hating blanket rejection of Western culture in favour of the poorly defined appeals to “diversity” and “tolerance” whose implementation remains unquestioned.

Some cultures must be superior to other cultures in some way. How can this be so? Insofar as cultures vary in their adherence to real truth and beauty; but this is not to say that people are superior to other people because of their culture. At the same time, owing to the common image of God in all mankind there is worth in the culture of every people, and, since all cultures are also marred by rebellion against God, failure to learn from other cultures simply because of the relative “superiority” of one’s own culture is wrong. Oppression is wrong. Racism is wrong.

I more than any white person must realize through Chinese history that white people have been major part of my ancestral homeland’s lamentable state today. But I also realize that a large part is also due to the greed and myopia of Chinese people themselves from the days of the Qing dynasty to the decadent present; it is this that has led Chinese people to betray their own people and exploit them in their own quest for profit and domination. So I do not believe in perpetuating the illusion that China’s decline was the fault of the evil Westerners and their running dogs.

Let me remind the reader that this is especially important for the way we view the explosive growth of orthodox Christianity on the Chinese mainland, where overt persecution in the Cultural Revolution and deception and less obvious persecution thereafter has failed to wipe out an undiluted, active faith in the one true and living God who saves us by unmerited grace from our total depravity. This had nothing to do with Westerners and everything to do with a God who lives though He was crucified.

In Europe both multiculturalism and its opponents undermine the knowledge of the things that are found in Jesus Christ, the former by the assumption of relativism, the latter by condemning true beliefs held by traditional immigrants, which “progressive” thought has abandoned. In the end both are equally inimical to the faith through the ways in which they can drag the church into cowardice. If a person by disagreeing with the cultural leftist line is judged to be antisocial and opposed to social cohesion, such a development is bad for both believers in Christ and more traditional immigrants. It is all the more worthy of our attention when we consider the shift in Christian demographics on “elite” university campuses in recent years: increasingly the white people, jaded with a false gospel with a Christ of no grace, power or authority, have rejected the concept of “Christianity”, while the community of believers has become disproportionately Asian.

The gospel has proved itself to be a message that is for all people, not for one people to oppress another. It is not an enemy of love and kindness, nor of objective and knowable truth. Instead it upholds both truth and love and compromises neither. This is the nature of the gospel:

Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. (Eph. 2.11–16)

What is there in that but the goodness of God?

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