DO PEOPLE MATTER ANYMORE?

Do people matter anymore? Really. I’m a serious as I can be.

Inalienable rights. Justice. Access. Freedoms. Life. Liberty. Pursuit of happiness. Individual protections. Protection from government. Church and State. The need for government protection. Just what are in alienable rights? What does that mean anymore? You’re free to believe what you want, just don’t believe it around me. I hear statements like, “I’m for the greater good!” Whose greater good. Greater good for all of society. maybe…it’s not clear to me..  I can’t imagine the plethora of different “greater goods” people would come up with, not to mention how they’d accomplish arriving at each  “greater good.”

Then I think about the term “shame.” Have we any sense of shame? We’ve lost all semblance of shame… it’s nowhere to be found. Not having shame is celebrated.  I know shame and guilt are a tool and the fuel for cults to flourish.  I’m not  using the word shame in that context.  It’s more about shame for how we talk to and about each other when we disagree. We regress to our childhood school playground. “Well he did this, or she did that..But I did it first. No you didn’t.” You’re  a big fat idiot, Well you’re just ignorant,…Why don’t you shut up,…Meet me outside”…and we take our mark on the stage of turmoil..and then the marchers march and the rioters  tear stuff up.  I’ve had a quote that I made up when I first joined Facebook.

“Something terrible happens when “you” and “I”become “them” and “us.”

It references the concept of deindividuation that presents itself when someone’s  behaviour spontaneously transforms into something other than their normal persona when they participate in a group,…hence greater potential to become more emboldened, more offensive and more dangerous.  They become willing to emotionally meld into the crowd psyche, even if it means foregoing their own personally held discretionary limits. Drowning  in the flood of a united contention, acquiescence is the implied requisite in order to remain part of the group.

We use the obscuritas veil of social media to say anything we want: vitriolic, hateful, spiteful rhetoric….and do it with ease….like spitting as we walk. We think nothing of it. Society places great value on automobiles, beauty, fame, and the bizarre, while the shelflife of human dignity is tenuous at best.. In our current environment, people are disposable, easily dismissed, devalued and worse. We can change that problem in this country, and I don’t mind being as redundant as I can in using this quote.

“The colossal misunderstanding of our time is the assumption that insight will work with people who are unmotivated to change. Communication does not depend on syntax, eloquence, rhetoric, or articulation … but on the emotional context in which the message is being heard. People can only hear you when they are moving towards you and they are not likely to when your words are pursuing them. Even the choicest words lose their power when they are used to overpower. Attitudes are the real figures of speech” (Edwin Friedman)

Appreciating you enhances me. Not appreciating you diminishes me.  (Dr. Steven Stosny from Anger In The Age Of Entitlement)

4 thoughts on “DO PEOPLE MATTER ANYMORE?

  1. I can’t tell exactly what your defending? Inaileable right to think as you want as long as you don’t violate my rights. The sad thing today is that the polarization is so stark that even though they are captured in the same building (Congress) it doesn’t mean people listen to each other. Now, if we can agree that the beliefs of the extremist US groups, like Nazis, fly in the face of our way of life, threaten our freedom and injure segments of our population what do we do about that? It seems we are back in the 50’s and 60’s only with increasingly more the right to open or concealed carry. This is rapidly developing into a more and more combative time. Where is Martin Luther King?

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    1. Isn’t that the truth. Actually, Linda, I wasn’t defending anything. I think I prefaced the whole blog with “things I’m thinking about”. This is more about questions than answers, or defense of an idea. I really think that you hit it on the head when you talk about people not being able to discuss ideas without anger and violence. There is no disagreement at all when you talk about Nazis and violent extremist groups. That’s what I meant when I talked about the shelflife of human beings and how they can be devalued, dismissed and as in Nazi culture… become disposable. Thanks so much for taking the time to read the blog as well as responding. I’m grateful.

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      1. Gotcha! Speaking of questions..how do we address these things when no one listens? What happened to respect and decency? What should our churches be doing? Leadership?

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