Sunday, August 9, 2015

It's hard to really empathize

Bernie was interrupted by Black Lives Matter activists.  From their perspective, he and his audience are but progressive white supremacists.  It's a shame they attack Mr. Sanders since his approach is the only one that ultimately has a chance to end the rank racial disparities of structural racism that persist in the nation.

The rich get rich, the rest get by or get worse.  Until equity in our economic order is realized there will be no change in other aspects of our society.  I have tried to understand what the activists say.  Not being black, it's difficult.  I cannot imagine what it's like to be performing simple acts in public and paying a unjustified consequence.   I have searched for some area I do understand that is akin.

I have found it, I think.  I have read a lot of English history.  Okay, what's it like to be black in the USA today?  Well imagine you are an average peasant back in the good old days of 1100 Wessex?  A learned and more or less accepted class structure dominated daily life.  The class system insured life went on without disruption.  Yep, walking while being a serf has a similar ring to today's racial perspective.  The aristocrats were human and mattered.  The rest of us folks were needed, but were tolerated and treated more as livestock than much else.

What happened to the serf and peasant life to change our lot and more or less end aristocratic rule?  Oh, I imagine it had a lot to do with the lords needing labor and cash were in short supply.  It's amazing what a plague here and an infectious outbreak there can to do class relations in any economy--in the end it comes down to the distribution of goods, services and incomes in a society when the workers and arsitocrats are dying off.   What will the boss give up to insure he remains the boss? That's probably the story of everyman's liberty and freedom  over three thousand years of Western history.

The gradual changes benefitting the lower classes, over time, accumulated and gave them sufficient power to wrest control of their society from the upper class.  I always enjoyed the 17th century when Charles I was beheaded.  Culture has a very long reach, so it's not a surprise that,  in England, today,  to find aristocratic class based attitudes, reflective of days long past, to persist and color how people interact.  Yeah, they still have a Queen and a House of Lords.  It does show up in British TV shows--we see their everyday class stereotypes on display.  I wonder what stereotypes they see in our TV dramas?  

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