Let people off their reservations

I’m sick of seeing people attacked for leaving their reservations.


2 thoughts on “Let people off their reservations

  1. re: “I’m sick of seeing people attacked for leaving their reservations.”

    That’s like being sick of Kangaroos jumping, or fish swimming.


    It’s how we’ve been wired by evolution.

    See books like:

    “The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics and Religion” by Jonathan Haidt

    “Less Than Human: Why We Demean, Enslave, and Exterminate Others,” by David Livingstone Smith

    “Moral Tribes: Emotion, Reason, and the Gap Between Us and Them,” by Joshua Greene

    “Predisposed: Liberals, Conservatives, and the Biology of Political Differences,” by John R. Hibbing and Kevin B. Smith

    Humans evolved to form into groups of like minded individuals which then compete with other groups for scarce resources and political power.

    The founders understood this, intuitively and intellectually. Which is why the Constitution is designed the way it is.

    We forget this. and “Imagine” there’s no countries, and no religion too, at our peril.

    The biggest danger we face, and the most crimes against humanity are committed, when we forget who and what we are and think instead that we can design the “good society” and the “new man” merely by putting in place the right social structures and teaching the right thoughts.

    Platonic idealism is literally killing us. But with the best of intentions.

    See, for example, “Pathological Altruism” by Barbara Oakley.

    It’s social creationism. It’s anti-science magical thinking that has killed hundreds of millions in the name of “science” and “progress.”

    Far better to accept what and who we are and react accordingly, as the Founders did.

    • I agree with that by itself, and am familiar with the underlying theory, but it doesn’t address what I wrote. There’s a difference between being sick of some behavior and expecting that behavior to disappear entirely. In fact, the behavior I described is far from involuntary, and there are many people capable of suppressing it if they would just realize they’re doing it and decide to stop.

      Even so, your comment makes a mountain out of a molehill: even if the 25% most rational, conscientious, and self-aware people decided to stop attacking others for going off their reservation, I don’t expect all our problems to be solved; only that one ugly and annoying rhetorical habit would become less common among a small subset of the population, and this would make it less unpleasant to read things that subset writes.

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