To begin with, there’s no such thing as a pure bloodline. Not only in humans is pure bloodlines impossible, but also in plants and animals. As a geneticist, I can confidently say that pure bloodlines carry a load of disadvantages. First of all, pure lineages with no evidence of intermarriage suffer from genetic disorders. Disorders such as hemophilia. Secondly, purity is prone to disabilities. That’s why blood-related marriages result in weird-looking children with malformed features.
Back to my story. Last week my friend argued that his family lineage was pure. That there was no intermarriage with other tribes in East Africa. We spent a whole day arguing how that was impossible and possible at the same time. At the end of the day, his stubborn mind couldn’t bend to the facts. No African tribe is pure.
One of the reasons why purity in African bloodlines is impossible is colonialism. This page of history is bloody and sad. However, the truth is the white colonialists who ruled Kenya were not true to their white spouses. Cases of rape and secret marriages were present in those times. Slavery didn’t just involve hard labor in the fields and housekeeping. Ladies who were fancied by white men were forced to work in brothels. I certainly don’t think condoms were a popular thing in the 1900s. Therefore, children were born in such situations. These kids intermarried with fellow Africans and resulted to present generations. Nonetheless, due to insufficient generational records in African families, the truth remains shady. No wonder you may notice certain tribes are very light in complexion.
Indigenous Movement for Peace Advancement and Conflict Transformation (IMPACT) did research in Northern Kenya: Samburu, Isiolo, and Laikipia about brutal rapes by British Amy. Since 1965 and 2001, more than 800 women have been recorded as victims of rape by the British Amy training in Northern Kenya. This is a statement established by Amnesty International (AI) and IMPACT in 2003. After this came to light, the Kenyan government stopped British Army training in Kenyan soil. Despite the severe action, children of mixed races were born over the past years. This came at the expense of girls, grandmothers, and wives who suffered in silence. It’s not only women who bore the price but also boys who were sodomized within the 35 years the British Army was active in Kenya.
Migration and relocation schemes. Before the colonialists came, some African tribes had an itch for adventure. That is, they never stayed in one place. They were called pastoralists and traders. During such escapades, pastoralists could marry off their daughters to other communities in exchange for pasture fields and good relations. The merchants could marry outside their communities since they were away for months or years. Pastoralists also married off their sons and daughters to rival tribes to stop cattle rustling and seek protection from raiders. In matters of relocation, colonialism was a major player. The white men relocated Africans from the Highlands and fertile lands to build their colonies. The displaced Africans were concentrated in camps called Reserves. These camps had people from different tribes. Hence intermarriage was inevitable.
Modernism. I am a millennial kid in the modern world. Thank God for that! I am a classic example of a mixed bloodline lady. My parents come from two different Kenyan tribes. I am not the only one from a mixed background. There are many children in this century who decend from a mixed tribe lineage. In the past, tribal intermarriages were highly frowned upon. Some based their dislike on the undesirable characteristics of certain tribes. The good thing is, urbanization slowly ate away this rigid system. Many urban and town children have parents from different backgrounds. But as traditional rules dictate, only one tribe can be your identity. It all depends on whether the children of your tribe take names from their father’s or mother’s side.
Another bloodline mix up is the classic hit and run backgrounds. This is where a mother gets pregnant then the man who bolts right after discovering his seed was successfully planted. As a matter of fact, children are increasingly being sired by different fathers. Therefore, a single mother can have five children from different fathers. And these fathers have a 90% chance of not originating from the same tribe. The children may take over their mother’s surname to make them one, but the blood doesn’t lie.
Interracial marriages. With the invention of online dating apps and social media, dating is crossing international barriers. Above all, this is a very good thing. Racial intermarriages is a sure way of killing racism and prejudice. The mixed-race children have a way of tracing their African roots. Fortunately, some not only trace but marry into other African tribes.
African diversity is not only confined to skin color or shades of brown. Diversity is within our blood. This applies to everyone with an African ancestry. Your blood is the blood of many tribes. Whether you are in Europe, Asia or America. There is a high chance you and I have origins from the same tribe. 💪🏿