Once again, here is James Kalb, from The Tyranny of Liberalism: Administered Freedom, Industrial Tolerances, and Equality by Command, on how liberalism has marginalized traditional human institutions in favor of formal liberal institutions, all of which it has done in the name of freedom and equality. Only problem is, they are not really free and equal:
Only rational formal institutions remain functional and authoritative. What were once traditional social institutions with definite form, function, and authority become personal pursuits that each can make of what he wishes so long as all others remain free to participate or abstain as they will. [Note the difference between these institutions, now voluntary, with liberal ones, which become increasingly mandatory] Marriage and family are replaced by "relationships" and "living together"; religion becomes a freeform pursuit of individual fulfillment; and inherited culture becomes an optional consumer good, a matter of personal style or group assertiveness.
Such tendencies make it impossible to deal reasonably on their own terms with issues of identity, such as sex, kinship, ethnicity, and religion. Those distinctions play no role in the liberal understanding of rational social functioning, so they are understood as pure principles of irrational opposition and hatred: absolute, unbridgeable, and impossible to reconcile with a peaceful, just, and efficient social order. The consequence is that they must effectively be abolished--trivialized, conceptually dissolved, canceled through reverse discrimination, or kept from entering into thought at all.
Under the regime of liberalism, the way in which people have traditionally understood themselves and others now can have no bearing on their relations to each other, at least to the extent that those relations have substantive consequences. Who you are can have no connection to how things are with you, except to the extent that "who you are" refers to your relation to institutions liberalism accepts as authoritative. A man and woman have to be the same, but a Harvard and state-university graduate can be different. The result is the forcible imposition on everyone of a wholly abstract and radically depersonalized order that abolishes the connections and distinctions by which human beings have always lived in favor of more formal ones such as wealth, education, and bureaucratic position. Factually considered, that new order is unequal and unfree, but it is able to pass itself off as an indisputable application of neutral principles to which no sane and moral person could possibly object.And even saying such a thing will make you a target of charges of insanity and immorality. Cue the comments: three, two, one ...