The tweet by honourable Tendai Biti of the MDC A to Professor Madhuku has shown that Tendai Biti is a tribalist who cannot be called a nationalist. Tendai Biti has exhibited his intoxication with toxic tribalism. This has shown that MDC A has become intoxicated by toxic tribalism and the group mob mentality. The whole MDC A has been unconsciously been seduced by the idea that one group is “wrong” and “evil” while our own group is “correct” and “good.” This mentality leads to a whole list of disastrous consequences which must never be allowed to exist in our Zimbabwe. For these Tribal utterances Biti must be arrested and MDC A must apologise to the good people of Chipinge.
Toxic Tribalism: A loyalty to one’s own tribe or social group to the point that dogma and dysfunction become the standard. Tendai Biti in his response to the legal opinion written by Professor Lovemore Madhuku he said
“Lovemore you are very wrong. The golden rule of statutory interpretation is the ordinary natural meaning of words. Your contextual approach within the context of this debate is pure witchcraft. But then again you come from Chipinge.”
This Biti was implying that Chipinge people specialise in witchcraft. Biti is still surviving in the colonial error where people were divided by their tribes and a message of hate was allowed to separate the united Zimbabweans. it should be noted that If you spend time with crazy and dangerous people, remember – their personalities are socially transmitted diseases; like water poured into a container, most of us eventually turn into – or remain – whoever we surround ourselves with. We can choose our tribe, but we must never allow to be labelled or divided because of our tribe, we should be horrified by the puking of insults to the Chipinge people by Tendai Biti. By demonizing the people of Chipinge Tendai Biti and the MDC A are showing the foremost quality of someone who is toxically tribal. If there is any labelling of the other group as being witches “stupid,” “evil,” “racist,” “demons,” “scum,” so on and so forth then you can almost be sure that they are in the mindset of toxic tribalism. This is the true reflection of the ,MDC A. “When people have tried everything and have discovered that nothing works, they will tend to revert to what they know best—which will often be attacking people on the tribe, the totem, or the taboo.”
The former president of Ethiopia Mengistu H Mariam said
“I am a military man; I did what I did only because my country had to be saved from Tribalism and Feudalism. If I failed it was because I was betrayed” As Zimbabweans we must not always have to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself and being a Zimbabwean. BITI and MDC A must no longer see or identify themselves solely as members of a tribe, but as citizens of a nation of one people working toward a common purpose. Biti and MDC A think with their epidermis or their genitalia or their clan, they are the problem to begin with. One does not banish this spectre by invoking it. Biti suffers from a wrong belief that he is from a rich ruling class, so he instigates MDC A to use tribalism, a primitive caveman instinct, to their advantage since the beginning of time. They use it to divide and conquer the people of Zimbabwe. They drive wedges between the peace loving Zimbabweans and make us fight each other, so we rise up against our rulers and fight them. One must not forget when Biti and MDC A engineered the youth during Tsvangirai’s funeral to attack Khupe and Mwonzora purely on Tribal basis. You can observe the same old trick everywhere in MDC A today: Men and women are fighting. That doesn’t just happen all by itself. There are always voices instigating these fights.”
Biti’s behaviour can be best described as conscious behaviour and attitude against the people of Chipinge. One of the hallmarks of someone who is engrossed in toxic tribalism is a lack of conscious behaviour. Unconscious behaviour comes in many forms such as screaming, not entertaining contradictory ideas, being closed minded, violence, and the list goes on. You cannot be dogmatic if you are truly conscious in the present moment. Dogmatic behaviour can only take place in unconsciousness. Through love, tribes have been intermixing colours to reveal a new rainbow world. And as more time passes, this racial and cultural blending will make it harder for humans to side with one tribe race, nation or religion over another. There is almost no country in Africa where it is not essential to know to which tribe, or which subgroup of which tribe, the president belongs. From this single piece of information you can trace the lines of patronage and allegiance that define the state. This is the system which as a country we fight to eradicate, how this can be possible with people like BITI who believe that people from Chipinge exercise witchcraft. Since the time Zimbabwe came into being there was never an area which does not have a witch. Why Biti specifically accuse the Chipinge people of witchcraft only shows the tribal bias which rules Mr Biti. The concept of democracy in the MDC A is nothing but a publicity stunt – for there to be real peace we actually have to stop living as tribal savages and start living as universal humans whose family are the humans, whose religion are the humans, whose philosophy are the humans and their coming from Chipinge must not be associated with witchcraft. There are a litany of consequences that come with this mental operating system. Tribalism is known worldwide to cause violence and genocide. This is what Biti is angling for; he does not know what to say and how to say it. Biti is a bigoted pig who needs to grow up. Toxic tribes constantly squabble with each other and never agree on anything. A classic example is the utterances by Biti which was callous and immature. The MDC A led by Biti and Chamisa constantly fight with one another to the point where they accomplish nothing within the country which actually allows us as a country to move backward rather than forwards. Toxic tribalism sets in motion a process of degeneration as opposed to evolution. People who have this mindset are dying as opposed to growing psychologically. They become angry, bitter and resentful towards everything outside of their tribe. They blame witchcraft for the burdens of their minds which is hardly seen.
“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.” (Friedrich Nietzsche)
In actual operation Nature is cruel and merciless to men, as to all other beings. Let a tribe
of human animals live a rational life, Nature will smile upon them and their posterity; but
let them attempt to organize an unnatural mode of existence equality Elysium, and they
will be punished even to the point of extermination.”
As much as it’s hard to accept, there is hate deep rooted amongst some people using tribe or race as a means to a political end. What makes it dangerous is that politicians have mastered how to weaponise this issue mixing truths & propaganda & religiously defending it.”
Tribalism is more powerful and dangerous than any political party. People choose to follow and support someone, not because they are good as leaders or they have good credibility, but is because they are from the same tribe this is the spirit which is being brought up by Biti and his MDC A. While Patriotism is a gateway drug, Tribalism is the gateway to racist. You can either be a tribalist or you can be a human, not both, because though in the old days nationalism aided the movement of national integrity and self-determination across the world, today it has become a filthy weapon in the exploits of bigotry, ignorance, narcissism and separatism. We must learn to take pride in individuals, not in labels – not in labels of tribe, not in labels of nationality, not in labels of party, not even in labels of intellect, philosophy and schools of thought. MDC A mist realise that either we are alive and human or we are dead and tribal.
Biti must remember that If your own cultural identity is more important to you than unification of the world, then the world will remain segregated for the rest of time, but if you can truly, actually, genuinely aim towards the unification of the world even at the cost of your own identity, then not only we’ll create a world of peace and assimilation, but also, in that world there will be place for all identities, with none of them being superior or inferior to any of them.”
Everybody knows that the world lacks harmony, but the question is, what do they do about it – all they do is talk, talk and talk, without realizing. It’s of no use to talk of harmony, you must live harmony – and to live harmony, you must abandon all barriers that keep you from it, including those that you hold most dear.” Tribalism is the idea that we should divide people into group identities then assign undesirable or evil trait to that group and such a way that we don’t see the unique image-bearers of God before us. We must always remember that in politics, the connotations of “tribe” are clearly negative. The word is meant to signify an attachment to politics that is unhealthily excessive – like a primitive religious cult. The implication is that the tribally political believe in their politics too much, putting faith above reason. Unscientific in their approach, they naively prefer the simplicity of what they already know; they are unwilling to embrace “change”.
The metaphor of political tribalism thus suggests that certain kinds of political outlook are irrational. At the same time it promotes an alternative, in the form of the detached observations of a sophisticated individual mind. But here the metaphor of the tribe is itself hindering our thinking.
The way we tend to talk and think about our politics puts citizens in a paradoxical position. We are, much of the time, objects of politics: those whose attitudes, aspirations and lifestyle policy will be applied to by the state. Chipinge people are the people whose votes the parties want.
At the same time that we are objects of politics, we are also asked to be observers of it. This is the space that critics of “tribalism” think we should occupy: apart from the action, reviewing it as if not part of it – theatre critics who dislike too much drama. It’s a view that brings out the “colonial” mindset embedded within the metaphor of tribes, which makes politics seem to be about keeping the uncivilised in check. As if political disagreement mostly turns on a lack of understanding – as if it could be resolved easily if everyone calmed down, put things in proportion and listened carefully while the facts are explained to them. Where does Biti gets the guts to insult the whole of Chipinge ?
That does require people to be reasonable, to balance their own interests with an appreciation of everyone else’s. But it also requires them to be conscious of their particular interests and dedicated to political action in the service of them. If we are going to find ways to resolve conflicts by giving everyone something of what they need, then we need to be closely involved – we need to be more passionate about politics, not less. We do not need to be labelled as witches because we come from Chipinge. Why would it appear normal that the MDC A runs to Chiredzi to seem like they are going to help the people of Chiredzi yet they are showing a middle finger to the neighbours in Chipinge. We need to find ways to reduce the toxic tribalism. Instead of hating and abusing those who have a different way of life and living in areas we do not live we should reach out and find some common ground. We have become intoxicated by toxic tribalism and group mob mentality. We have been seduced by the dogma that one group is “wrong” and “evil” while our own group is “correct” and “good”. This is wrong. Instead, we need to reach out to the other side and find some common ground. Politics is a set of worded opinions. But it should never become sets of worded abuse. One of the most powerful things we can do to combat toxic tribalism is to be kind not to behave as we suffer from verbal diarrhoea like Tendai Biti. Approach everyone with kindness. Treat those around you how you, yourself want to be treated. This “Us” vs “Them” mentality is not leading us anywhere productive nor appealing. It only leads down a path that leads to extreme suffering and destruction which nobody consciously wants. The Fight against toxic tribalism starts with yourself first and foremost because that’s all you can control. How can you fight toxic tribalism when you yourself act in a tribal manner and aren’t personally growing yourself as a human being? Start with yourself.
The Twitter message by Biti is indeed a hate language; it must never be accepted in a free Zimbabwe.