Hello again. Good to be with you.
Those two claims might (or might not) have been made by the same person; they do represent related thinking.
Both addiction and race-based and other types of victimhood are becoming paid-for lifestyles. Both place the blame for their situation and the solution in the hands of others. There is a high correlation with the people who are making one claim or the other; both assertions tend to be made by people who share similar thinking–look no further than the daily news for proof. Finding a path to success individually, and for our society, demands that we expose both excuses as what they are–excuses at best, and scams at worst.
Pause for, “Why is this a topic of interest?” Because the word addicted is coming to mean “it’s hard” in the same way that victim is evolving to mean, “they are being mean to me.” Yes, there is such a thing as real addiction and there are true victims; however, these real cases comprise less than 5% of the cases portrayed in the media. Cases where private insurance premium payers and public taxpayers are paying to treat claimed issues. Treated over and over again, and frequently without success.
Addicted: Addiction does not mean that it is hard–or even extremely hard–to stop doing something harmful. Addiction means doing something where it would necessarily result in massive, adverse physical and/or mental effects. Adverse effects sufficiently incapacitating they cannot be handled without professional intervention.
As Jesse Jackson said, “You may not be responsible for being down, but you must be responsible for getting up.” Mr. Jackson would tell the 95% of the so-called addicted and victims to simply stand up by themselves, and find a way to get on with it.
Racist (Victimhood): “If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him.” Voltaire. The most egregious victimhood claim is racism. Everything from reparations–read that cash, and lots of it–to milder forms of payback, e.g., affirmative (re)action, are being either demanded in the case of reparations, or are being presently implemented in the case of affirmative action. And massive amounts of welfare money continues to be spent claiming to deal with the vestiges of racism. How else could anyone justify giving large amounts of taxpayer money on a continuing basis to able-bodied adults?
Claiming that racism still exists in a significant way is big business. Some people simply make a career out of it. See Al Sharpton. Those claims fuel an ever expanding series of bureaucracies and mounting sums of money. We are being told that both the bureaucratic time and the money are being used to deal with racism that continues to be virtually unchanged, and alleviate the suffering that it causes in the meantime. Don’t believe that for a second. It has to be clear that incidents of racism have been decreasing rapidly for the last 150 years. Starting with a civil war that caused more casualties than all of America’s wars together, continuing with the integration of virtually every element of our society, the Civil Rights Act of ‘65, and the election–twice–of a black President. But the government agencies and monies aimed at racism grow. As the real incidents of racism, e.g., slavery, segregation and discrimination are confronted and weeded out, racism-related charges now must be non-specific, charging “institutional” or “systemic” racism.” But if those charges are to be proven valid, there must be specifics behind them. What are they? The racism lobby needs to keep their claims, now largely non-specific if true to any significant degree, alive and well. To paraphrase, “If racism did not continue to exist, it would be necessary to re-invent it.” (Luden)
Less in the news, but deeply damaging, are other claims, e.g., the assertion that all obesity is a disease, creating yet another class of victims. The American Medical Association labeled obesity a disease so they can charge for treating it. This leaves the patients who buy into this fiction with the view that the doctor needs to cure their obesity in the same way that a doc would need to cure pneumonia or remove an inflamed appendix. The patient’s role is to lie back and let someone else handle it. And pay for it.
What is our role as compassionate individuals in a caring society re addiction and victimhood? When it is real, we are called to lean in hard, and do our part in assisting the afflicted. No standing back, no waiting for others–or the government. When either addiction or victimhood are claimed and not real, we have an equally important responsibility to stand up and say, “No. This is not real. You can do this.” And the “No” part in the face of false claims will do as much for those in need as coming through for others when the situation is real. Helping those in need and helping those not in need to stand up for themselves are both necessary, powerful, and compassionate.
Let’s go back to the Statue of Responsibility blog; the diagram will help us understand this week’s topic.
As always, responsibility starts with us as individuals. Including standing on our own two feet whenever possible, and helping/encouraging others to do the same.
Will Luden, writing from my home office at 7,200’ in Colorado Springs