Studying the Middle East, or, for that matter, any non-European entity or peoples, one will often hear in lecture, in a crowded room of dark-circles-under-their-eyes youth that the creation of a State provided humanity with diversity, progress and growth.
For instance, in discussing Arabia before the birth of Islam there, we’ll hear something on the lines of: “Arabian society was based on the notion of tribalism. Your family protected you from other families, and most of the time this family was imagined in lineage, etc. Blah blah blah.”
And because the field of Middle Eastern Studies is so occupied by white and male people, it’s a difficult notion to grasp that tribalism isn’t backward, nor is it a death to (genetic) diversity, nor does it kill population/urban growth. It’s difficult to explain to white people because, living in the United States or Europe, means that they are naturally blind to that state–the tribe formation of a state they have made.
I’ll argue that, in actuality, nation-states are inherently racist and state-formations are tribalistic in the truest sense of the definition, while “tribalism” of Africa and Asia is a more progressive, diverse and strengthening human development.
In sticking with our points, white people will note that the state does three things (which I will elaborate):
- States/governments provide the means for progress, such as organizing patents so no one steals ideas from each other, providing funds to the art and such, providing welfare to the needy on behalf of everyone.
- States/governments offer humans the opportunity of diversity through the citizenship process. (Lol.)
- States/governments allow cities/urban areas to flourish, which in turn, strengthen human growth and family, which means more ideas, more innovation, more togetherness (instead of constant in-fighting).
On the other hand, many white academics claim that tribalism does the opposite: that it stifles progress through lack of funds and gathering of resources, that it crushes diversity as one marries from within the family, and that it impedes the ability for humans to flourish together in an urban environment.
Okay. Now that we have the white academic argument laid out, let’s look at the rebuttal: the state, as created by European philosophers and intellects and politicians and monarchs, and sustained by their people, poor and rich, woman and man, upholds the very negative definition white people have given tribalism.
- Concerning progress, we know that the European state doesn’t stimulate the minds and doesn’t protect the bodies of all its citizens. Formed on the basis to give white landowners rights against the ruler, European “democracy,” in actuality, is made to upload and sustain the rich of its given society whether in Germany or in the United States. Hence, when they want to stimulate minds of its scientists and artists, those grants are given to white people at a profound rate, since the science and art of its slaves and laborers aren’t worth the taxes these Brown and Black give to the State. It’s not worth returning it to them, to stimulate their minds. Moreover, the European state only sustains the white poor; as analyzed in this Huffington Post article, most of the people who receive welfare in the United States are actually white people (white women to be specific). Thus, the European state, and the one Europeans formulated in America, only promotes its white citizens, rich or poor, woman or man. Progress is only for its white citizens. Hence, we have stories of Black women succeeding in STEM fields and still not being honored; hence, we have laborers who keep European states afloat and yet they are hated for “taking the money of the state,” ironically. Progress is only for its white people. Progress of the body is for white people. Progress of the mind, even if innovated by people of color, is stolen. Progress is only for its white citizens. So that, much like their definition of tribes, white society savagely crushes its slaves and laborers in order to feed itself–and itself alone. Much like a barbaric tribe they describe, no?
- While European states and the United States offer paths to citizenship for those who are non-white (which, in the United States, is a bit ironic for white people to handle anyhow), this path requires that the person of color shed off herself and become white. They must learn German to be German, and English to be “American” (although the only true Americans are those on reservation camps). And they must know the over-glorified history of white people in order to be accepted, while white citizens are not expected to know this history, merely because they are white and their citizenship is derived from their race (not their knowledge of a language or history). Moreover, I would be remiss not to mention that paths to citizenship in European states are costly, a heavy burden, to ensure those who want to be white take the classes and submerge themselves in it, so that those non-white citizens–those citizens of color of any European nation-state–are not themselves, they throw off their culture that is good and noble, and they put on the new industrious culture and language of whiteness. I’m not going to go into how evil and how backward this is for society–how many languages we’ve lost, or even things such as ways for natural-hair girls to wrap their hair at night (this all had to be rediscovered among the woke). This is a silencing of diversity–it’s an illusion. We have so many Brown and Black bodies, but all of them, through the ideals of citizenship (which is a racist concept anyway), are manufactured to be white as stone. And once people of color become white, they are then told, “See! Now you can become like us–CEOs, managers, and innovators!” while they–white men and women–still hold the reins tight against us, people of color. Those who agree to the contract “to become white” are given recommendations to higher levels of power and authority, because white people won’t fear them, and those who refuse like our grandmothers or our fathers are meant to sweep the streets as punishment. Don’t be deceived: the European definition of the barbarity of the tribe in punishing Others and in protecting exclusively its own is the very definition of the white mega-tribe. Hence, we have cops killing Black lives more than any other, pulling over new immigrants to this country and finding the inhumanity within themselves to ship people against their will. Hence, our prisons are filled with Black people who refuse to obey, not criminals. Hence, British detention centers for refugee families are open and running and shipping human bodies as though God had nothing to be with them. Hence, Germany ships back refugees to Greece, pushing tensions to create a damaged economy, in order to hold its own self up. Hence, those who fail citizenship tests are meant to pay again, travel further and further away to get it. Europe and the United States are the definition of a white mega-tribe.
- And, lastly, concerning the European definition that tribes in Africa and Asia are unable to build cities and flourish in an urban environment. The first cities were in the Middle East, and today, Cairo has a larger population than New York City, so let’s not joke around. The Middle East in particular is the very definition of city from Cairo to Tripoli to Beirut and Damascus to Aleppo and Jerusalem and Amman and Sana’ and Baghdad and Haifa and Alexandria to Mosul and Tehran. Don’t play: Middle Easterners taught white people how to even begin to build a city. And these cities were built by tribes that came together and shared their resources–and I don’t mean in the European sense that one white family helped another white family to make France; actually, we know that Egypt was one of the more diverse sections of the world, welcoming all: Hebrews, Persians, desis, Assyrians, Nubians, Babylonians, etc. Egyptians were capable of working with other cultures and tongues to construct a society of diversity, pulling Asia and Africa together. These diverse societies, while they conquered each other over and over, rarely brought their supremacy to the forefront; instead, they melded and molded, so that we see Daniel becoming a minister in Babylonia and Joseph second in command in Egypt and Abraham being welcomed into Pharaoh’s court and Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, giving advice to Moses about setting up a judicial system and Moses marrying an Ethiopian woman (as his second wife) and Rahab the woman of Jericho being saved by the Israelites and Ruth the Moabite being welcome by the Israelites as well and Esther being accepted as a Jew in Babylonia and her uncle Mordecai as a minister as well. And in Muhammad’s biography, centuries after, we know he spoke to Christians–Ethiopians and Assyrians and Copts. We know he married a Copt, and that Ethiopian Christians were seen as wise and prophetic and Assyrian Christians were his teachers. Meanwhile, the Jews of Yathrib welcomed Muhammad. This used to be the way of the world: welcoming and mingling and accepting. But by the rise of the nation-state and nationalism, we have lost that. The world has lost that.
It’s clear that when Europeans define a tribe so negatively, they seem to be unaware that they are truly describing their own police-state, racist/nationalistic, white mega-tribal countries. I’ve never understood why Europeans are so jealous of what Brown and Black have created, even when bound with slavery or colonialism. But it’s clear that they are, and that these white insecurities have become the death of many innocent. And not just the physical kind of death. But also the the death of cultures and tongues and livelihoods–all lost in the scramble for Europe to find an identity, any identity, while we used to flourish.