Thursday, January 31, 2013

Remind me who does the exploiting again?

The following excerpt is from a 2007 Guardian article that I have come across far too late; but it may be safe to state that the people exacerbating the harms come in all shapes and sizes—and some even wear lab coats, or like to utter the words "En", "Gee", and "Oh":

"She has come to the clinic for more than 20 years. In that time, more than $22m in scientific grant money has flowed through the project, and many of the researchers have earned reputations as the top experts in their fields. Yet Agnes and a handful of other women are still selling sex, to an average of eight clients a day, still for a dollar or two each time - although they say they would like nothing more than to get out of sex work."

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Drug envy

"In this research, envy is typically described as a painful emotion that emerges as a result of upward comparison to advantaged others, who possess something that one covets but lacks. Envy is an unalienable part of social interaction, with people experiencing this feeling in private and workplace settings, or any other environment, where inter-personal interactions take place. On the positive side, benign envy was shown to lead to learning, motivation, better performance, and achievement. On the negative side, malicious envy leads to [a] desire to harm the envied object and breeds hostility. Endured over longer time periods, envy can damage one’s sense of self-worth, result in group dissatisfaction and withdrawal, lead to depressive tendencies, reduce perceptions of well-being, and [lead to] poor mental health."

This segment has been taken from a German report, entitled Envy on Facebook: A Hidden Threat to Users’ Life Satisfaction?, published in the second decade of the 21st century. The report specifically examines the social media phenomenon, but, funnily enough, I couldn't help but be reminded of the global drug situation during the same time period.

Even though countless people are yet to realize that drugs are primarily a source of pleasure—thereby explaining the frequency with which they are used by the vast majority of humans—the fact remains: if you just happen to find yourself in a situation where the drug/s you most appreciate is/are illegal, and too many days have been spent walking past people who are joyously enjoying their drug/s in licensed venues, or glancing at promotional material for events that rely on the liberal consumption of legal drugs to be successful, then why wouldn't you progressively breed feelings of resentment, alienation, envy and hostility? I dare say it may be akin to the feelings that developed for women when they were denied the right to vote; or slaves in the United States who just could not comprehend why they couldn't also sit on their own porch at sunset and enjoy a pleasant meal with their family—or something like that.

I could go on, but anyone with a functioning brain will be able to read the aforementioned paragraphs and connect the dots. Maybe ponder this when you are next anticipating your caffeine hit or awaiting paracetamol for that headache, and then think about that really angry person you once read about, who held someone up for money.