Groucho Was Right!

July 5th, 2018

9781523095032.jpegGroucho Marx famously said, upon resigning the Friars club, that he would “never want to belong to any club that would have him as a member.” That line has been used since by those that are afraid of not belonging. What better way to prevent being excluded than saying, or convincing yourself, that you don’t want to join?

The facts, and our world today, tell us something entirely different. Not only do we want to belong, but we want to belong to groups that are exactly like us. While tribalism may be built into our DNA, the added anxiety and fear in our culture today, puts that tribalism on steroids.

This tribalism is enhanced by our hi-speed 24/7 world. It accentuates fear of the other, it drives our identity politics, and it fuels our confirmation bias driven life. In short, the more we want or need to belong, the more we are divided. All leading us to the conclusion that Groucho had the right idea.

This is also the idea put forth by Howard J. Ross in his new book Our Search for Belonging: How Our Need to Connect Is Tearing Us Apart.

My conversation with Howard Ross: