Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Human Nature?

Looters and natural disasters seem to go together like biscuits go with gravy. Not everyone partakes, of course. But there are always those who seem to feel that when the forces of nature rebel, it's time to rebel against society as well. There are those who will say that looting is necessary to their survival in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. But when MSNBC reports that "some in the crowd splashed into the waist-deep water like giddy children at the beach," you have to wonder...are we just savages underneath it all?




Anonymous said...

I say hooray for the looters. It's nice that atleast once in thier poor lives capitalism is actually tilted in thier favor!

yoga chickie said...

I think it is one thing to break into the local pharmacy to get your heart pills when the flood waters make it impossible to get the pills otherwise. I think it is another thing entirely to break into Wal-Mart and come out with 10 pairs of jeans. One is survival. The other is theft, pure and simple.


Anonymous said...

please, some of the biggest thieves in this country are in our own government and some of the major corporations that are supporting some of the stores looted--they steal all the time--including stealing lives, and sometimes never get caught....."theft pure and simple" is never so cut and dry--thats the problem with the way people are locked up in this country-- no one looks to the reasons that may have gotten them to the point of bad judgement and desperation in the first place-- a good portion of those reasons have a lot to do with the conditioing of one's environment......In the devastation that most of those businesses are facing, 10 pairs of jeans wont be missed. surely there are better ways to go about this than stealing, but i say let people do what ever they need to do to feel like they are functioning towards a future-- as most of those folks could be dead right now.
Capitalism in this country is really about stealing from poor people--in more ways than i think most of us are aware. Also most poor folks are bombarded with the idea that they have to have all of these material things to be successful and comfortable, thats where the root of all this looting is at-- it's a by product of the greedy foundation on which the history of this country is based.

Those people are acting out of a plight of desperation so cut them some slack.
to bad yoga in the states seems to exist in a world that does not include most of them. It could probably tilt a lot of these issues for the better!

yoga chickie said...

Well, supposedly, we're not an eye-for-an-eye society, so theft for theft is still theft. I understand that the way people are brought up and the devestation of poverty and lack of education adds up to a feeling of hopelessness. But crime is a still a choice.

We are all bombarded with capitalistic imagery - the Donald Trumps of the world, for example, the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous-type shows on television. Especially here in NYC where opulent wealth is the NORM, and the AVERAGE cost of an apartment is GREATER THAN ONE MILLION DOLLARS...I kid you not. But that doesn't mean that I'm going to cook up some white collar crime in order to keep up with the Joneses. I know someone who went that route, and he lost his securities license and lives his life basically on the run from debt and the authorities. Would you excuse him as being a product of an excessively wealth-obsessed capitalistic society?

Our country is based not on greed but on motivation, at least that is the way I see it. Those who aspire CAN succeed in this country. The American dream is to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps. If you are looking for the easy way out, it won't happen. There are no shortcuts, only hard work (I am not talking about those who are born into wealth). And crime is crime, no matter how sympathetic the perpetrator is.

As for yoga - it is available to everyone in this country, not just to the elite. You could say that skiing and tennis and golf are elitist activities. But not yoga. Yoga is taught in public schools, in community centers, in women's shelters, in jails. There are certainly places where it is elitist. But you could say that about anything - even FOOD.


naomi said...

Hi Yoga Chickie--
a friend of mine posted the last comment to you on this, told me about your comments to his and forwarded me the link to your site. Nice site. He didnt want to respond, but I feel strongly inclined to....
I plead with you-- PLEASE WAKE UP!!!!
Your response to my friend's message is sadly exaclty what i'd expect from someone who has no idea what is like to deal with racism in this country on a more personal and ingrained level. It's okay
, thats not your karma to have to deal with in this life time-- from what i have read you definately have been given your own rough road to travel yourself. But the American dream as you put it is not available to everyone--if you have ever experienced true racism and prejuidice you would know this. But you don't--most white people don't. And thats not a slight to you in any way, it's just the way things unfortunately are in this country. As a college educated person of Native American and African American descent I can truly tell you that the American dream that is supposedly available to everyone is NOT. It's only availble if youcan break the class barriers set up by the racist, sexist system that is called capatalism.

What version of American History are you looking at? In true American form capitalistic greed is a type of "motivation" as far as I am concerened from what i know of American history. Look at what this country has done to it's original natives-- that was the type of "motivation" based on greed in it's highest form.

I grew up in a very poor minority community where most of the billboards advertised liquor, the corner stores load the kids with dangerous sugary items, and drug dealers littered the streets. My extended family still lives there. There were no Yoga studios in my neighborhood, and still are not. The only reason i got exposed to yoga was thru attending the predominantly private white college i went to. Yoga is availble to those that have the resources to expose themselves to the wonderful practice. I was very lucky to have this exposure. Without this exposure it would have not been made available to me unless i somehow stumbled upon it.

Tell me-- how many people of color do you see in your yoga studio? At the place i take classes here in Colorado I am the only one most of the time. Yoga has become popular in this country because of people with adequate resources that have been lucky enough to be exposed to the practice, can afford to pay for it and can share it with others.Most of these people are middle class/upper middle class folks and the majority of the people in this country that fall into this category are not minorities-- plain and simple.

Unfortunately in most american cities the last thing most poor people ( black or white)are thinking about is
what yoga could do for them. They are concentrating on how to survive. Yoga is not marketed in this country to the people that really need it-- it is marketed to high powered professionals, suburban house wives, and college educated folks. It's not marketed to the mother on welfare, the drug dealer in jail, or the homeless-- because they won't pay for something like this....thats capatilism at work with a capital C!
The people that got stranded during this hurricane were mostly the poor and disabled who did not have the resources to make it out. Furthermore-- look in the aftermath how long it took for our government to respond to those people.It's shameful.
But frankly as a person of color I am not surprised. And this saddens me, I hope it saddens you too. It should sadden us all.

peace and many blessings to you,

yoga chickie said...

I am going to address this - but I think I will do it in a post, rather than in a comment...thanks...Lauren

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About Me

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Northern Westchester, New York, United States
I live by a duck pond. I used to live by the East River. I don't work. I used to work a lot. Now, not so much. I used to teach a lot of yoga. Now not so much. I still practice a lot of yoga though. A LOT. I love my kids, being outdoors, taking photos, reading magazines, writing and stirring the pot. Enjoy responsibly.


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