What if every one of us actually started out, born equal to one another. We know we are supposed to be, as that is a God given right. But are we all only to be equal at birth, and the rest of our lives struggle through inequality whether it be physical, mental, economic or social? Or are we equal, no matter what? Let’s be honest. We are not all equal, nor were we truly born equal. Theoretically and according to God we were and are but equality has not been equally measured. We do not even have true equal opportunity. I think my Conservative friends want to believe we do, but if we really look at our American society, true equality is not there. As a white, blue eyed, blond haired (when I had hair) male I know in some instances I have been shown preferential treatment and in others have been penalized.
We are NOT all equal
But we should be. I’ve been thinking about equality, and what rights we have that are really equal. I think this is one conversation the United States is really struggling with right now. Some Countries, like Canada have embraced some ideologies in order to try to provide that equality as best as it can be provided.
So what does having equal rights mean?
Let’s start at the beginning. Life. The right to live. Once conceived (not born…but conceived) we have the right to live. What does this “right to live” offer? Is it simply existence? Would that mean we get the right to exist, but the rest is up to us? I’ve come to realize that there is a problem with that theory. For starters, not all babies start out equal. Some pregnancies are complicated. Some mothers choose epidurals during labor, which I firmly believe can put children at a disadvantage; maybe even as much a disadvantage as a mother who smokes, drinks or does drugs during pregnancy. Some children are born with physical, mental, economic or even social disadvantages. Yet, we are theoretically born with equal rights. What about those babies that start out with challenges at the start? Are they equal? Their rights may be, but those rights may be a moot point if they can’t exercise them. But even if considering the basics, how can a baby that cannot even feed itself, that must learn to communicate, express and defend itself be equal? Babies do not get true equal treatment, care or guidance to learn these things. We do our best, but we just cannot provide them with true equal attention. If you have more than one child, maybe you can appreciate that fact. We do not time every second we spend with each child to ensure each one gets equal attention.
I am beginning to think this theory of equality is under a basic presumption that, at a minimum all are born healthy and within a similar economic status. But even this is flawed because humans can contract diseases, or fall to injury at any time. It is impossible for everyone born to be absolutely equal to one another. But if we believe we are to be equal, and treat one another equally, what can we do at a very minimum to make sure every one of us (especially our children) has an equal vantage point in starting life?
What are all the tenets that offer a true equal starting point? As far as I can tell: nutrition; health care; a livable, safe dwelling; clothing; education and in some cases transportation. Is it wrong to believe these to be the basics of equality? If there was a way to guarantee these basics to everyone especially in their formative years, is it possible we could foster a more productive society with less crime and other burdens?
Equal access to free medical care has been a hot issue the past few years. I think equal access to medical care was not even part of the “equality” equation in the early years of the Country because it was virtually non-existent. If you got sick, or fell prey to an disabling injury there was not much to be done for you. For a lot of what we now consider basic injuries, experimentation was the order of the day to heal the sick or wounded. And when people got really sick, there was not much medical intervention. People were left to heal themselves or to live with their misfortune, as the knowledge was not available to do treatment or provide medication. There were no life saving treatments or appliances that made life more comfortable and gave ease of access to the sick or disabled. But these solutions exist now. Should they really only be accessible to those who can pay for them? Should we find a solution that equals the playing field in regards to the basic tenets of life, to give each life a true equal start (as equal as we can make it)?
Don’t misunderstand me. I do believe in rewarding productive behavior with privileges. Rights and privileges are not equal. But if the basics are not met for all people, how can we expect all people to be productive? If we find a way for all to be granted equal access to those basic tenets of life in order to foster a productive, disciplined society then the productivity would lead to some, if not most to getting privileges.
There are many factors to consider going down this road. Will there be abusers? What about people that produce less than average? What about people who’s productivity is not so easily measured such as a stay-at-home parent? These are part of the conversation. But when you sit down to feed your family, do you feed them according to their daily contribution to the family? Do you ration your meals based on productivity? Or do you let them eat whatever they need to satisfy their hunger? This is a generalization, of course.
However, it is possible to provide the basic tenets to all. “How?” is the question. I will conclude by saying that it is not a socialist’s or communist’s solution because it simply is not government’s place to solve or manage these issues. It is mankind’s. And I believe we can solve these issues without penalizing the producers or giving up our individual rights or our privileges. I believe the solutions can fit within the guidelines of the Constitution. But I also believe the Government will need a serious overhaul; a change of guard.
Please subscribe, because I hope to provide ideas in up coming posts.
Please comment whether you agree or disagree and explain why.