If We Aren’t Careful, Tribalism Will Destroy Us
If We Aren’t Careful, Tribalism Will Destroy Us
I think that given the events of late – both the inept, but nonetheless terrifying, “pipe bombs” sent to prominent opponents of President Trump and this morning’s terrorist attack on a synagogue in Pittsburgh – it’s time we had a chat about tribalism. I’m not talking about the esprit de corps of a community and a dedication to preserving one’s culture. I’m talking about the irrational dedication to one’s own “tribe,” not just shunning others, but chauvinistically portraying all others as evil and intent on destroying you.
Anti-Semitic terrorist Robert Bowers hated Jews. He was a conspiracy theorist and Holocaust denier. He claimed President Trump was being manipulated by the Jews and the “deep state,” and claimed Jews were “hostile invaders.”
He wasn’t a Trump fan. He wasn’t a Republican. He was a terrorist nutjob, who decided to wreak havoc in a community of peaceable people gathered to worship and pray.
And yet, there will be partisan loons who will claim that Bowers was spurred by the rhetoric of President Trump. There will be other loons who blame Republicans, and yet others who blame white people.
Much like there are now those blaming Trump, his rhetoric, and his truthful, if blunt, condemnations of the mainstream media for glamorizing lies, pushing bigotry, and publicizing attacks on not just the President, but Republicans writ large.
As Nina said mentioned in her post just a little bit ago, unhinged leftists are already on the warpath, blaming everyone from President Trump to conservatives for the shooting.
But what we fail to note – both on the right and the left – when events like this happen is that individuals are responsible for these acts of violence and terror, not Democrats, not Republicans, not Trump supporters, not MAGA, not Bernie supporters. And by collectively placing blame on groups, rather than the perpetrators, we are killing individualism and genuflecting at the altar of collectivism, which has long been the death knell of free societies.
We are a diverse society of various cultures and languages. We value our heritages. We treasure our family histories. We work to remember our native tongues. But at the same time, we came to this nation – this nation united under the Constitution that protects the rights of every individual – because we sought something more – a society where we can come together despite the differences in our heritage, culture, religion, and language – and unite under an umbrella of a nation of which we can be proud and where we can work, achieve, earn, build, and succeed.
Tribalism is ultimately what threatens us – that collectivist evil that makes enemies out of anyone who doesn’t belong to our religion, our gender identity, our political party, our race, our color, or whatever our identity politics dictates binds us together. It’s not love or respect for the freedoms and liberties that our nation ultimately strives to protect for all individuals, but a blind worship of those who look like us, who identify as a similar gender, race, or color, and who believe in the same deity.
Talcum X – otherwise known as Shaun King – blames conservatives for the massacre in Pittsburgh.
Democrats blame gun owners as they call for the disarmament of the very people who voted them into public office and seek to deprive them of the ability to stand up to tyranny.
Poor people blame “the rich” for their inability/unwillingness to work to achieve success and Republicans for “income inequality.”
Black groups lay blame at the feet of supposedly racist whites, even as they have seen tremendous progress over the past decades.
Orthodox Jews a few years ago shunned one of their own for betraying his tribe after he reported to the police that his mentally disabled son was abused by other orthodox Jews.
Tribalism blinds us to reason and to facts.
It causes is to dehumanize those whom we see as “outsiders,” fomenting hatred and distrust.
It promotes a group victim mentality and creates a society in which the tribe that can prove to be most oppressed and victimized wins “the prize” – an opportunity to come out on top by tearing down anyone whom they perceive to be more privileged and better off than they are.
It is this mentality that makes the mentally deficient screech about “false flag operations” when any twisted bastard wreaks havoc in our society, because they are unable to recognize or admit that their side… their tribe has its racist/anti-Semitic/hate-filled/twisted/unhinged shitbags.
Tribalism is collectivism, and collectivism is a filthy termite chewing at the foundation of free societies and of individual rights, and it needs to be stopped. Once collectivism destroys individualism, misery and tyranny are the logical consequences.
Once you allow the tribe to take priority over the individual, you can no longer claim to respect individual rights, and you can no longer claim to love this country – the only nation in the world that specifically enshrines the protection of individual rights and freedoms in its laws. It threatens the very survival of our nation and the people who live here.
Is this what you want?
If not, then you’d better stop masturbating to the dulcet sounds of the most ignorant and prejudiced among you, and start standing up for the fundamental principles on which this nation was founded.
Bowers is a disgusting, anti-Semitic nutjob. Full stop.
Cesar Sayoc is a batshit, roid-raging unhinged loon. Full stop.
James Fields, who murdered Heather Heyer in Charlottesville a year ago, is a racist sack of moldy dogshit. Full Stop.
James Hodgkinson, who nearly murdered Rep. Steve Scalise at a sporting event last year, was an angry, unhinged jerk.
Trump supporters aren’t responsible for Sayoc any more than Bernie Sanders supporters are responsible for Hodgkinson.
Conservatives are no more responsible for Fields or Bowers than the Democratic Party is responsible for multiple assaults against Republicans that are taking place as the mid-term elections approach.
If you continue laying blame on groups, rather than holding individuals accountable for their actions, expect the collapse of society to start, and you’d better have enough ammo when it does, assholes, because I know I do, and I will spare no enemy.
Featured photo by: Alexandra Wimley/AP