Saturday, March 24, 2012

Racist Murderers In The United States Of America

The tragedy of Trayvon Martin cannot be understated.  An innocent young man was shot down for, apparently, little reason other than the color of his skin.  This was a terrible sort of event which continues to be repeated in the United States and in other parts of the world.  Race-based violence is, unquestionably, one of the most odious aspects of daily life in many places.  If society is to truly advance in any meaningful way... this is something which must be adequately addressed. 

But there is something about this specific case which strikes me as peculiar.  I find it interesting that the highest elected government officials have joined the chorus in calling for justice regarding this incident.  Of all potential cases to capture the imagination, I find this one to be relatively arbitrary in its uniqueness.  Young men of color are being shot down every day in modern America and, as horribly tragic and unfortunate as this particular instance was, it just personally doesn't shock me any more than many other cases.  What is it about this case that's captured the attention of the media and government officials?

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Trust and Relationships

Our willingness to express our hopes and fears is matched by the proportional likelihood that we will be manipulated and exploited accordingly.  This isn't to say specifically how often the latter will happen when we open up, but people are undoubtedly manipulated along these lines by those they've trusted.  The breakdown of the family in modern America suggests a limitation of unconditional love and almost everyone has witnessed basic betrayals of trust.  Many of us have, consequently, become more guarded when establishing relationships.  Our subsequent lack of openness further impedes our ability to form various forms of relationships and this, in turn, creates a negative feedback loop based upon the fact that we know information is being withheld from us -- which causes us to be more suspicious of others and, therefore, emotionally guarded and distant.  
Politically, when the realities of surveillance and opportunistic maliciousness are added, issues of trust and healthy relationships are complicated further.  We have a difficult time simply establishing basic personal relationships, but establishing trusted political alliances can be far more daunting.  It's possible to get lucky in terms of love or affinity groups, but it would be better if luck were less of a necessary factor in these regards.