Who are we who punish the sick, the poor, the less fortunate?

When I read about an entire political party that, for no good reason, wishes to take health care from the poor, with the false excuse  “affordability” . . .

And when I read that, Soviet-style . . . our government is using undocumented, immigrant children to turn in their parents,  “essentially using these children to unwittingly turn in their own parents, and this is going to haunt these kids for a very long time, especially if their parents are deported, especially if their parents are jailed or sentenced,” said Maria Woltjen, executive director of the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights at the University of Chicago . . .

And when I read that drug overdose is the leading cause of death in Butler County, Ohio, but county Sheriff Richard Jones says he “has no plans to equip his deputies with naloxone, an opioid overdose reversal drug that saves hundreds, if not thousands, of lives around the country every day” . . . .

And then, when I read this poem written by a 23-year-old heroin addict . . .

“Funny, I don’t remember no good dope days.

I remember walking for miles in a dope fiend haze. I remember sleeping in houses that had no electric. I remember being called a junkie, but I couldn’t accept it. I remember hanging out in abandos that were empty and dark.

Awareness of rash of overdoses couldn't save Selinsgrove woman, 23
Rest in peace, Delaney Farrell

 

I remember shooting up in the bathroom and falling out at the park. I remember nodding out in front of my sisters kid. I remember not remembering half of the things that I did. I remember the dope man’s time frame, just ten more minutes.

I remember those days being so sick that I just wanted to end it. I remember the birthdays and holiday celebrations. All the things I missed during my incarceration.

I remember overdosing on my bedroom floor. I remember my sisters cry and my dad having to break down the door. I remember the look on his face when I opened my eyes, thinking today was the day that his baby had died.

I remember blaming myself when my mom decided to leave. I remember the guilt I felt in my chest making it hard to breathe.

I remember caring so much but not knowing how to show it. and I know to this day that she probably don’t even know it. I remember feeling like I lost all hope. I remember giving up my body for the next bag of dope.

I remember only causing pain, destruction and harm. I remember the track marks the needles left on my arm. I remember watching the slow break up of my home. I remember thinking my family would be better off if I just left them alone. I remember looking in the mirror at my sickly completion.

I remember not recognizing myself in my own Damn reflection. I remember constantly obsessing over my next score but what I remember most is getting down on my knees and asking God to save me cuz I don’t want to do this no more !!! “

. . .  I think about the people, and realize that there, but for the grace of God, go I,  and I wonder, “What has become of our good nation, that cannot even find the heart to help a child who begs us for help?”

Why have we become so unfeeling, so cruel, so willing to turn away and to blame the unfortunate for their misfortune?

There was a time when to be American meant to lend a helping hand. It was written on our Statue of Liberty.  Now, we meet every stranger with a steel fist. Now, the Statue is a lie.

It takes courage to be kind. So lacking courage, we elect haters, xenophobes, the mean-spirited and the selfish, who justify their evil by claiming they make us safe, though in reality, they lead us down to our greatest dangers.

Why have we allowed ourselves to change?

Now we carry guns. We impoverish students. We cut Social Security. We jail the poor for the most minor infractions. We impose bails that only the wealthy can meet. We pay for hard work with salaries too low for life. We deprive the poor of their vote.

We prefer paying to jail than paying to feed. Given the choice between the carrot and the stick, we choose the stick. We bar the innocent from our shores because a tiny few may be guilty.

We pass cruel laws. We justify torture. We sneer at the homeless and the starving.

We deport children.  Our hearts have frozen even to them.

Who are we who punish the sick, the poor, the less fortunate? Why have we become so addicted to inhumanity?

Why?

Rodger Malcolm Mitchell

 

 

13 thoughts on “Who are we who punish the sick, the poor, the less fortunate?

  1. Who are we who punish the sick, the poor, the less fortunate?

    Sorry, but we can’t be what you want us to be whilst we must compete for every resource in order to fulfill our obligations. To compete for housing and food means there must be losers..what part of this is everyone missing?

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      1. Rodger,
        Around a year or so ago you asked me why I was so against competition – as if the very notion of it was unsound. Well here’s your answer.

        I am obligated to compete in order to fulfill my obligations to society, which includes housing and feeding my children – if I do not the state takes them away.

        I am a truck driver who struggles to make enough to fulfill my obligations, and every day more and more people (including immigrants) come along and sign up to be truck drivers, making it harder and harder to make ends meet. I do not want to stop them, they have every right just as I do to earn money, but it is plainly obvious that under free market competition, not everyone can earn enough money.

        As for compassion and charity, I proposed to you and others a model (also around a year ago) which would benefit all the less unfortunate and poor because it would enable them to secede from the exchange economy and yet enable them to co-exist alongside everyone else – all they would have to do is make a declaratory choice, and like everyone else I have showed this model to, it was ignored, mocked, or scoffed at. Why? For a system which is supposed to be based on freedom and free-will, it most certainly does not permit freedom from exchange economics.

        I understand you have put a lot of effort into monetary sovereignty and the principles behind it, but I don’t find that the solution lies in politics, because politics is based on competition, not compassion. However, some of the principles you have expounded on have most certainly been a huge help for me especially in supporting my model from a legal perspective. For that, I am forever grateful to you.

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          1. I have no idea what you mean. Isn’t communism something that whole countries do? Where in anything I have written have I suggested that our whole society convert to communism or any other model? If you read my blog and somehow interpreted what you read to suggest I am suggesting we all convert to communism can you please show me how you came to this interpretation?

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          2. This is so perplexing.

            Based on you question, which seems to be calling my model communism, then are you saying, if we take any street in america or any other country, and on that street there are 100 houses, and out of those 100 houses, 1 or 2 may be employing my model, and the other 98 or 99 continue to do what they have always done (engage in exchange economics) that somehow, this equals communism? How do you come to this conclusion? How does 98% of the street who is engaging in capitalism, and 1 or 2% who engages in my model = communism?

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          3. Sorry..it was such a shock that I reacted…my bad.

            My understanding of Communism is that there is a dictator or some group of leaders who force their system or model on the whole nation and everyone must accept it whether they like it or not. Those who dont like the system are usually the ones who complain and/or suffer the most.

            My model differs because it is not forced on anyone, it is only implemented by choice, and it co-exists within the capitalist system. It may be that only 1 or 100 people out of 100 million implement it…who knows how many might implement it because its really up to the individual. Its just another way of living within a system which doesnt provide alternative ways.

            Your article touched me Rodger because I have a brother who has spent much of his life being homeless, struggling with drugs and the law, and all of this is because he cannot fit into to this econonic system which we all think is so grand, and yet he is an exceptional artist and guitar player, who could benefit society much more through his art if he had such a model as I am describing available to him.

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          4. It is not as easy as that, because it can’t be implemented without forming some alliance with govt first (otherwise how else do we get access to resources in order to implement it?). But in order to be able to form an alliance, there needs to be some form of recognition – I don’t need too many people, only a handful to recognize it for what it is and then I can move forward with it (hence the reason I started the blog). It is very difficult to describe a model which is completely removed from money without people imagining that it means you have to go live in a cave or something (which I am dead against because living in a cave is unlawful). Our psyche is so ingrained with this belief that the only thing which anyone can use to pay for something is money, it makes it almost impossible to describe this model without confusing people. Incidentally, the only person who I have described it to who actually ‘got it’, was a barrister from Sydney, but as it turned out, he did not want to help because there was no money to be made out of it!!! LOL…what a laugh hey?

            Unfortunately, my brother lives on the other side of the country to me, and he has gotten so bad of late he gets uncomfortable around anyone now, including our own mother. This is from a few years ago – this is my brother here:

            http://www.gg-art.com/news/newsread/artnews108621.html

            But if I am able to get this model going, then I will be contacting him to see if I can get him to join me and then help me, as I will then be aiming to start helping others less fortunate get off the streets or out of their poverty also, but it won’t be easy – people who implement this model will have more responsibility than those who simply go earn a wage. But, really, this model is not just aimed at getting homeless people off the streets – it is really aimed at giving people a choice beyond the money/exchange economics system.

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  2. I am deeply ashamed of what our country has become. It’s absolutely sickening. I do my best to try to help others and I feel like I can’t do enough. Why are so many people a so cruel to those who need help? Why so much poor shaming? Why has this country become so vicious and cruel? I think maybe it started with Generation X. I remember growing up in this generation thinking that so many are so tuned out, self centered, cynical and cold. Maybe the Millennials can save us.

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