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Identity Politics

Identity Politics

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Stanley Fish, whose blog Think Again, is hosted by The New York Times, wrote about "identity politics" last week. Here's how he defined the term:

You're practicing identity politics when you vote for or against someone because of his or her skin color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or any other marker that leads you to say yes or no independently of a candidate's ideas or policies.

We'll ask Dr. Fish and two other guests, columnists Clarence Page and Jill Nelson, if they think it is positive to align your political beliefs with your identity. What do you think? If you're black, should you automatically support Barack Obama (D-Ill.)? If you're a woman, should you vote for Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY.) without hesitation? If you're a veteran, is Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) your obvious, perhaps only, choice?