What’s happened to us?
I don’t know what’s happened to the human race over the past few decades. They don’t seem to have the ability to put themselves in someone else’s shoes. What has happened to the human capacity for compassion? Are we, as a species devolving? Are some of us losing some of our mental capacity to apply emotion to situations that don’t involve us personally?
Think about your last doctor’s appointment. Did your doctor tell you that you have to start doing anything differently? Did he tell you to start getting more exercise? To cut out salt or sugar from your diet? Did he tell you that you have to stop smoking and/or drinking? Did he change or prescribe medication to help treat health conditions you have? Are you able to pay for those medications? Have you ever looked into what a medication costs through your insurance company vs not having insurance? Could you afford them without insurance? Do you feel justified in judging someone for their inability to pay for prescribed medications? Are you willing to sentence them to death for the inability to afford prescribed medications?
Do you have any chronic illness that requires you to take regular medication? Asthma, heart disease, Diabetes? Have you ever become immune to the benefits of the medications you were prescribed and had to have the dose increased or the medication changed? Have you ever had a bad reaction to a medication? Have you ever had no improvement with a prescribed medication? Do you think people should be denied healthcare coverage for “not following doctor’s instructions?” How would you know if they didn’t? Is it even possible for you to know if you didn’t know that person personally? Would you want someone you didn’t know making that kind of decisions about your healthcare?
Have you ever lost a job? Have you ever worked a job that required special skills that eventually became obsolete? When utilizing said special skills, did it make your wages higher? When those skills became obsolete, did your pay plummet? Was the job outsourced? Or was that job eliminated through the use of automation machines? When you lost that job, did you receive unemployment benefits? Did your bills get behind? Did you struggle to put enough food on the table for your family? Would your kids have gone hungry without unemployment checks? Would you deny your neighbor that assistance if he or she were in the same situation? Would you refuse them for yourself and your family? Do you realize that unemployment benefits are among the entitlements you have supported being eliminated?
Have you ever been injured on the job? Did you have to be out of work for an extended period of time? While you were out, did your bills get behind? Did you struggle to put food on the table? Did you receive temporary disability during that time? In either of these situations, would you consider yourself and your family living beyond your means? Do you believe people should be punished for living beyond their means? Do you realize that these benefits are also considered entitlements?
The thing is, we as a species tend to judge by what we see and base it on personal experiences. The problem is that past experiences vary widely. So what you judge someone else for is not the same as your experience. You don’t know what they’ve been through any more than they know what you’ve been through. So no matter how you judge them, you do so unfairly because of your ignorance to what got them where they are. We all come from different places and different experiences and perceptions.
Bottom line is that we need to go back to live and let live. We need to fully educate our children in public schools, funding those schools fully with our tax dollars and providing all necessary tools and resources to do so. Then we need to trust that those who have been through that public educational system to have the knowledge and resources to make suitable decisions for their own lives and quit assuming they are either stupid or immoral. Because to make such assumptions says more about you than it does about them. And you know how you judge others. Try and imagine what they’d say about you. Do Unto others as you would have them do unto you.