Tribes Suck


This is the only tribe I’m particularly interested in maintaining

I have gone my entire life loathing tribes. I hated being lumped in with cliques in school. I hated being labeled a liberal or a conservative based off my stances on one or more political issues. I don’t like the idea that if I’m a Canadian, I have to agree with a stance our government takes or be labeled unpatriotic etc.

In many cases, I don’t think tribes are useful. I prefer to think for myself and I find that in many, many cases, tribes force group-think and don’t reinforce clear thinking.

I like to watch or read material from both sides of a debate, look at the statistics that they’re usually saying proves their side is right, and then decide for myself which side makes better arguments.

I don’t identify as any particular ideology. I do identify as an atheist because it accurately describes my position when it comes to god, but that doesn’t mean I will side with other atheists on subjects that have nothing to do with believing in god or not.

In fact, when people get mad that I’m posting on certain subjects, skeptical alarm bells begin ringing in my head. That doesn’t mean those people don’t or can’t make valid points, but I find from personal experience that it usually means they’re identity is somehow tied up in whatever subject I’m talking about.

Religion is often a good example of this. When some religious people get angry that I criticize religion, I don’t think it has as much to do with clear thinking as it does with them feeling as if those set of ideas are an integral part of who they are as people. In essence,  they don’t view my criticism as attacking an idea or group of ideas, but as if I’m personally attacking them.

People in that tribe will often ignore unethical things their own ‘side’ is saying because they are a tribe. Instead of speaking out against people in their own self-identified group when they say or do something unethical, they will either look the other way or defend the person doing unethical things. In some cases, they will actively cheer on the person acting unethically towards another person, simply for holding a different opinion from their own.

I don’t like having to defend the actions of other people who are supposedly in my own tribe. If someone agrees with my point of view on a political subject, for example, that doesn’t give them the right to treat people who disagree with us like garbage.

I prefer a good solid exchange of ideas. If both parties leave the  discussion unconvinced the other side is right, I’m perfectly okay with that outcome. I’ll likely think over that conversation over the next few days, and do more research to see if their view had merit.

While I may see the point that movements like BLM are making, for example, that doesn’t stop me from disagreeing with tactics like this:


I don’t find that productive and I don’t think that’s a sign of clear thinking. If your side is right, and the facts are on your side, then you don’t need to resort to this sort of violent rhetoric.

Maybe my dislike of tribes and group-think is due to my being a natural introvert.

I don’t know, but I really do think tribes suck.



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