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Monday, December 29, 2014

Double Standards

We love to talk about human rights abuses in other countries (real or imagined), but can't seem to come to grips with our own crimes. There's always been this pervasive attitude of racial and moral superiority about us, that our crimes, somehow, don't count.

This is delusional thinking. Until we apply the same standards to ourselves that we apply to everyone else, we're just kidding ourselves. This isn't reality-based thinking, and most Americans aren't even aware this is a fault, that it is not beneficial to feel and act this way.

As long as we are the most powerful military power on earth, we can escape justice for a while longer, but the end is now in sight. The world is slowly waking up to our arrogance, to our wanton aggressions, our unbridled imperialism.

The question is whether or not a nation of hardened hearts can awaken in time to save ourselves, or will we, too, go the route that ancient Egypt took when the Pharaoh refused to set the Hebrews free peacefully?

Despite repeated plagues that were administered as warnings in the Biblical account, they still refused to soften their hearts, and so the Pharaoh's armies were finally swept, unceremoniously, under the Red Sea.

In today's version of this desire to dominate others in the name of personal wealth accumulation, for the first time, we face multiple threats to our survival as a species. Moreover, our prospects for survival are not very good.

This is the most critical moment in human history, and we'll either sink or swim depending on our commitment to care for one another. Indeed, this is our last chance to do right by one another and embrace our ominous future together as one.

It is only by tending to the needs of others, coming together and combining forces, in solidarity, to struggle against those who are endangering our future, that we can hope to give ourselves a chance to survive. Dr. King put it best:

"We must learn to live together as brothers, or we will perish together as fools."

--Martin Luther King, Jr.