Dr. Lane’s Thoughts XVIII


1) Fair.  That’s not ‘fair’.  This word, “fair” is a word ensconced in the concept of justice and is only used in terms of the human perception of what is right or equal when in front of a form of justice-producing leadership, a god or someone who judges.

“Fair” is a word uttered by small children or undeveloped adolescents of any age (I have found that ‘adulthood’ is a legal number of 21 years old but not a number of years of emotional knowledge that can come on at any time, from 13-50 or more.  Some people never reach adulthood).  Fair is only a human concept in the way that we think of it.

Children are not designed to be fair.  From the beginning, they want and their parents provide.  It is up to the parents to teach what is fair and what is generous or kids will never learn.  Some parents fail to move the child from thinking of ‘fair’ as a selfish idea and toward ‘fair’ as an equitable idea available to all.

No one left alone in the middle of a jungle with no way of reaching other people is hamstrung in their ability to survive by the idea of ‘fairness’ – you just have to get on with the process of surviving.  Is a rabbit killed and eaten by a fox filled with the idea of fairness, or for that matter does the fox believe in fairness when he kills and eats the rabbit?  No person who eats food (meat or non-meat) considers whether it is fair that food is raised by people to be eaten.

You are born to whatever circumstances you are and then you grow up and survive.  You do your best and you find a way to make a life.  If you are constantly looking for fairness then you will be stuck as a child looking to other people for equaling what you perceive as imbalance.  Looking for fairness is a way of being stuck in one spot and blaming it on other people who you believe can make things right; ‘right’ for you but, just you.  The wonderful selfishness of looking for fairness is that you have already decided that someone else is the cause of what is fair/unfair and they are the solution.

Most important, you believe that you are innocent and good but, most of all, deserving of what you think of as ‘fair’ to be given to you.

On the matter of fairness and lack of survival advantage, many forms of “mental illness” and “emotional illness” that we have therapists and other forms of intervention to work with (I am intentionally excluding chemical imbalances which are treatable) just seem to disappear when basic survival is the only issue on the table, such as the scenario I noted before about being left alone in a jungle.  Considering the idea of fairness or your mental illnesses won’t help you survive.

For that matter, the food allergies that everyone seem to have these days seem to have gone up, by my estimation, about 10,000% since I was a child in the 1970s.  I can’t remember ever encountering a peanut or gluten sensitivity then but now every kid has at least one allergy and as many as they can create in their heads.  To paraphrase Chris Rock, when you are starving those kind of allergies and sensitivities seem to disappear.  To be clear, I am not saying that they don’t exist but I am saying that the number of people who have self-diagnosed themselves to these medical problems seems to be much higher than a human population could possibly contain.

Non-realistic allergies, minds set to look for fairness from others, delayed adolescence – all are the cornerstone of a weakened first-world mindset (I could write ‘American’ but I have an international readership).  If you need to tell the world that you ‘need help’ to survive then admit it.  Tell everyone the real story you want to tell about yourself: “I am weak on some level so do things special for me.  I need special food that doesn’t upset me, I need special actions from everyone else so that I do not fall apart and can function, I need special behaviors from everyone else that give me an advantage above others whether I deserve them or not’.  Just admit it – that is who you are.

That is who you are when you look for the world to change only for you.  Sing it loud and sing it proud!  Forever you are 12 and living with your parents who might care about what makes you happy.  Even if the rest of the world sees you as a grown man or woman of an age over 12 you have made it clear that you will never see yourself that way.  As your parents get older and less able to continue to do for you then continue to demand from them what you think is ‘fair’ in what you eat, want, and see as equitable since they are the ones that made you that way.

Isn’t that great – you can blame your parents for everything you think wasn’t done right for you: money to compensate for the bad wage on your job, money to pay for your ‘necessities’ that your bad work benefits won’t pay for, and a sounding board for how wrong the world is to you (your spouse, your friends, your own kids).

Do you see yourself in this essay?  Do you want to do something about this way of thinking in yourself?

Stop tolerating problems and become proactive.  The job is bad and people are ‘unfair’ to you – then leave and tell the bosses why you are leaving.  Maybe they will care or maybe they won’t but that is not for you to decide.

Are you certain that you have these allergies?  Get yourself tested and stop using it as an excuse for everything edible.

You still run to your old parents and demand to be compensated by them for what the world will not provide?  Try leaving them alone to keep what they have earned and find another way to get your material demands met by either simplifying your life or earning the money you need to pay for your ‘needs’.

2) Jeff Bezos is one of the wealthiest people that has ever lived.  No one can fault him on building his successful business – it is all his and he earned it. 

To contemplate how rich he is is almost impossible to wrap your head around.  I have been told that if you spent $180,000 a day since the year zero you could not spend his wealth in your lifetime.

His whole venture depends on his warehouses where he employees thousands of people to box the items purchased through his website.  These people work under very demanding conditions of strict time management to be useful to him.

They get paid very poorly for their work, which meets Mr. Bezos’s need for a capitalist model and allows him his untold wealth.

Since he cannot spend his money in his lifetime why is it such a bad idea if I would suggest a single idea: raise all of his employees wages by $1.00 an hour.  It would help them greatly and it wouldn’t affect his wealth in any way he could feel.

For comparison, he gave away half his money to his previous wife and it didn’t change his life in any way. ONE HALF OF HIS MONEY went away with no impact on him!  What would an additional $1,00 an hour cost him – an extra expense of $50,000 a day?  What would he gain?  Happier and more satisfied employees!

3)  Who represents you?  Who do you allow to be your voice on the issues that concern you?  Do you support the most strident voices, the most confrontational people who state that they are looking after your best interests?

Let’s just use me as an example – I am (1) white, (2) Jewish, (3) educated, (4) A citizen of New Jersey, (5) A US citizen, (6) a licensed chiropractor, (7) I have an office in Newark, NJ (8) I come from Buffalo, NY.  

Jews have Israel that has many people who feel that Jews must have sovereignty over that land, many Jews who feel that Jews are superior to other people but I know that all people have a range of quality and Jews do not have the ownership of great scholarship in any field.  White people have a mixed history of accomplishment and cruelty but then, again, so do all people in the world. I like being a chiropractor and the education I received was great at UBCC but there is nothing wrong about other occupations and I have a sense of pride being part of a team of equals in the care of patients.  I could go on and say the same about all of the other groups I am a part of. 

Do I like it when someone talks about the superiority of these groups I am part of when compared to people who are not part of these groups – sure I do!  I love it!  Those are my people!

It can be comforting to listen to strident voices who consider you superior to others but very scary when they can never find a commonality or similarity where differences that can be bridged and a community can be built.

How about when I hear these same people talk about the others (who are not part of my groups) are INFERIOR or THE ENEMY?  How about when I hear that these ‘others’ want me stopped or hurt or killed? Not equals in disagreement with equivalent needs and concerns with similar but opposite points of view but a force of ‘others’ to be wiped out for holding a difference from you or wanting me hurt.

No, I do not like that at all!  

Maybe you do like that; perhaps you enjoy being told that anybody who is not a part of your groups can and should be declared your enemy and you are comfortable to see other people seen as your antagonists.  An enemy means that you can see all life as a war and not a disagreement between equals.

Yes, it is difficult to tell the people who speak so well of you for being like them that they are not the voice you need in your life.  It such a compliment that they like you so much based on nothing but similarity but you must look to the bridge-builders, the calm representatives who want life to continue even with people who can never be the same as you.  People who can never be the same as you but must always be accorded the same rights as you for a voice and an opinion.

I will leave you with a message:  all the groups of ‘others’ who you think do not have your best interests in their hearts have members who see the world as you do.  They are also reasonable and they do not want to be told that they are better than you.  Those others want to build bridges with you and see you as part of their community.

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