Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg spoke out against the divisiveness of identity politics over the weekend, criticizing not only President Donald Trump but also his own party for engaging in the tactic.
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Speaking at an event for LGBTQ advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, the openly gay 2020 hopeful called it "ironic" that identity politics today are often condemned by the right given what he called the Trump administration's mastery of using "white identity politics."
Buttigieg said individuals can focus on what makes them different and tell others they wouldn't understand "because you haven't walked in my shoes," but argued that line of thinking "doesn't get us very far."
The mayor of South Bend, Indiana, then admitted in his speech, which NBC News dubbed "risky," "These divisive lines of thinking have even entered into the consciousness of my own party."
"Like when we're told we need to choose between supporting an auto worker, and supporting a trans woman of color, without stopping to think about the fact that sometimes the auto worker is a trans woman of color and she definitely needs all the support she can get," he said to applause.
The candidate then took another swipe at President Trump, saying, "The wall I worry about the most is not the president's fantasy wall on the Mexican border that's never gonna get built anyway. What I worry about are the very real walls being put up between us as we get divided and carved up. Walls going up within the working class, within communities, even within families."
Buttigieg went on to say "we have a crisis of belonging in this country," urging people to find common ground while telling his audience that although he is a gay man, "I am not just like you. No two of us are alike. But each of us has a story that can either separate us or connect us to those around us."
Mayor Pete Buttigieg Speaks at 2019 HRC Las Vegas Dinner www.youtube.com