I wanted to share something written by a friend of mine (with her permission) because I think it helps explain how some folks are feeling about recent cuts, and talk of cuts, to essential services. While there may be some who ‘game’ and cheat the system, most folks are using the systems we have in place as the safety nets they were intended to be. Some of the people I know who rely on Social Security and Medicare were not only productive working people, they were doing key jobs that many would not have the desire or the patience to do such as working with street kids, working in a women’s prison, and being a nurse. Through no fault of their own, they now cannot work. Everyone has a story behind how they got to where they are, and until you have listened to their story, it is not your place to judge.
Written by my friend -
THE DISPOSABLE PEOPLE
By some they are considered the disposable people. They are the homeless, the mentally ill, and the disabled. They are people who push shopping carts filled with meager belongings along cold, wet and dirty sidewalks. They are the unfed and the unbathed. They carry cardboard signs begging for help. They are preyed upon, beaten and ignored. Bearing memories that refuse to die they become but a shadow cast by all that once was.
They are the poor. Unable to stretch a meager income, they are cold and hungry. They are uninsured, living today in fear and despair. They sacrifice dignity on the altar of corporate greed.
They are the middle class. Once firm, their substance is now evaporating like water held to the fire of corporate values; a cancerous flame burning the soul of humanity. They are tethered and silenced; Victims of a powerful force shifting the boundary of morality.
They are the people not fitting the concept of “white male privilege.” They differ in race, ethnicity, values, beliefs and sexual orientation. They are treated with contempt, suspicion and denied the constitutional right of equality.
Those who consider themselves the indisposable people, represented by corporate wealth, power and greed, are with little resistance, emerging like hungry parasites from a dark pit. They are parasites with teeth gnawing on those who sleep with eyes closed in denial. Hoping whom they consider the disposable people will not awaken, they quietly fill their bellies with hopes and dreams until human values are snuffed out like a candle flame between two fingers.
Life is about compassion for our fellow human beings and about caring for the world that sustains us. Without that we have lost our humanity.