THE WORLD MAY LOOK DIFFERENTLY through the eyes of the poor by the way they are treated by those who have and by those who have more. To the poor person—irregardless of skin color—the delicious fruits and many ripening privileges of society are not theirs to be enjoyed nor savored. No, it is only those that are affluent that are obliged to indulge in such privileges, not them. The poor person, having been the subject of extreme “otherness” and systemic negligence by a system concocted by those who have and by those who have more, may also see the world as a place just a little shy of what Thomas Hobbes once described as; “A condition of man….is a condition of war; everyone against everyone.” That is to say, that the world is not only dangerously unfair, to those subjected to its many anachronisms, but it is also unflinchingly barbaric, and essentially, riddled with an-eye-for-an-eye mentality.
Although the poor are not entirely wrong in the way that they may view those who have and those who have more, my concern is, however, that those who have and those who have more are not preordained by God to infinitely oppress the poor. They do not have a monopoly over our bodies, our destinies, and ultimately, how the ripening privileges of society—that are just now beginning to bare their fruits—should be distributed to us. It is we, the poor, that are in charge of that. It is we, not God, that, like an English Queen when she is knighting someone, decided that those who have and those who have more should rule over us—for eternity. Thankfully, though, when this aforesaid and grossly ignored fact is realized—-and echoed through the ether like a massive trumpet—it will spell disaster for those who have, and continue to, abuse the power that we have given them. I am not much of a Christian, but when that glorious day comes—-when we, the poor are ready to judge those who had oppressed us—-it would be sufficient and completely acceptable for someone to quote scripture, specifically, Revelations 12:9, “The great dragon has hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”
Martin Luther King Jr., in his brilliant “Where do we go from here” speech attempted to prescribe what he thought was the way that poor people, specifically those of color, might have viewed the world—-i.e., a constant struggle for dignity and respect. To this point, he wrote, “Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can’t ride you unless your back is bent.” The meta-communication in his statement, and throughout his entire speech, for that matter, was that poor people—indivisible of race, nationality, or creed—-are constantly waging battle against known and unknown forces that are ever presently refusing to recognize their humanity. Although that may be true—-that the ontology of poor people’s struggles are linked to the intrinsic desires of respect and dignity—-what concerned me the most, however, with his brilliant speech, is that what Martin Luther King Jr., and those who shares his beliefs, refuse to consider, is the omnipresent barbarity, unfairness, and each-man-for-himself mentality that seems to be as fundamentally intertwined to human pathology as the night is to the moon. No amount of legislation, marches, and “Moral Mondays” will ever change that. It can be the time when Martin King Jr. gave his brilliant speech; the 60’s, or it can be our present moment; 2016, what will not change, until we make certain adjustments, of course, is the pathology of our human society to oppress those that are weaker and more disenfranchised than their are.
Now then, it seems to be that the solution is to not wait nor beg for those who have and those who have more to recognize the humanity of the poor, but rather to make certain adjustments to our society—-adjustments, that will act as social levees to protect against the constant flooding of human barbarities. One such adjustment, is a moral one. You can decide who gets what, grant manumission to some oppressed groups, or erect legislations to protect those that need the most protection, but until you change the moral understanding of the people that are supposed to uphold those aforesaid things, then you will forever get regression and barbarity. If you argue otherwise, shall I remind you that “The condition of man….is a condition of war; of everyone against everyone”?