[This post is a draft, and I may modify or add to it later. I’m not really satisfied with it yet, and there is more I wish to touch on, either here or in a related post.]
The minds and lives of modern humans are dominated by memes and institutions.
Memetic evolution is well-documented at this point. I’m most interested in certain deep, not-necessarily-verbal memes that govern the way peoples’ values relate to the world, like patterns of abuse, cults, political factions, etc.
Many of the most successful of this class of memes have incorporated the meta-meme: “That which you cannot control, destroy/kill/remove. That which represents a threat to the memetic disease that infects you, destroy/kill/remove.”
Native American cultures were less fucked by memetic diseases, for much the same reason they were less infected with smallpox. e.g. many (most?) Native American tribes at time of European colonization saw the obvious about gender and sexuality by default, that they are features of the soul not the body, and that people we would call homosexual, non-binary, or trans exist. European colonizers used this as one of their justifications for the destruction of native texts/culture, and oppression/killing, I’m not sure to what degree. (“I have the opportunity for power over you, therefore enslave/kill” was already a prevalent meme in Europe.) (Several other cultures were able to understand the obvious about gender, and there is a history of massacring, enslavement, and forced conversion to abrahamic religions.)
I don’t know how much this predated Abrahamic religion, but historically over the last 1500 years Abrahamic religion seems to have been the main vector for spread of this meta-meme (the vast majority of conversions to Abrahamic religion have been by threat of lethal force afaict). In the modern world, Abrahamic religion, the meta-order of wannabe world-owner governments, Facebook, Google, and other things have become merely parts of a larger structure that uses this meta-meme fractally.
In San Francisco, I was punched in the back of the head by a homeless woman for defying her christian proselytization (I said “hail satan”). And in the rationality community, trans women are discriminated against in hiring by MIRI and CFAR (in MIRI’s case probably through filtering on the basis of class, perhaps because of the need to appear respectable to donors; in CFAR’s case the leader of the organization, Anna Salamon, is a trans-exclusive radical feminist). These are the same phenomenon. “That which represents a threat to the memetic disease that infects you (or the institution to which you chose to submit for your own perceived gain), destroy/kill/remove”–in the modern day often done fractionally by decreasing a target’s slack, resources, or ability to communicate their experiences with others.