Ideological belief systems most often prevail over rationalist thought systems. Political, social, and religious movements attest to this point. But, as is widely known, the ascendance comes with a price exacted from the reality that does not fit the theory of its vested adherents. Theory has its place in helping to organize thoughts and feelings, motivate further trends, create values of right and wrong, and offer predictions of the future. But taken as dogmatic marching orders, which are not subject to regular discipline or exposed to refutations, theory becomes a barrier to free thought, flexible strategy, and tactics for action. It becomes a conceptual prison.

Ralph Nader, from Unstoppable

Our coordinator of volunteers is fond of saying that OPIRG McMaster is about ideas not ideology. i.e. OPIRG McMaster is available to any student who has a great idea and wants to put it into practice, under the broad headings of Environment and Social Justice. Whether in a volunteer working group, or seeking support for a project or event, we help turn student ideas into action in the public interest.

We encourage “free thought, flexible strategy, and tactics for action” in our working groups, as they find new ways to contribute and change the world. 

Check out ways you can contribute at or make an appointment to discuss your ideas.