I believe that, in our society, ‘injustice’ does not exist so much in fact as it exists in our attitudes and beliefs. Most of this writing will deal with our perception of injustice. We shall define ‘injustice’ as unfair treatment from any source. A situation is not ‘unfair’ because you don’t like it or because other people are not required to endure it. Injustice excludes many things such as your race, your culture, physical handicaps, financial conditions, and many more. It is normal and usual for there to be an unequal distribution of characteristics and resources among people and if you happen to be among the lesser endowed, this in and of itself does not constitute ‘injustice’.
Injustice is the negligent or willful withholding of resources or privileges that are common in your society. It is also undeserved punishment. The proper definition and understanding of the concept are crucial to resolution. Our society ‘bends over backwards’ to avoid injustice, often/usually giving the aggrieved ‘the benefit of the doubt’ as is evidenced in ‘political correctness’.
A common source of ‘injustice’ is in regard to our employment. This sometimes happens in small business situations where the work load is unequal but the pay is the same. The first question to ask is; “Am I doing the work that I was hired to do for the pay that I accepted?” If the answer is ‘yes’; that is the end of the story and, unless your employer will agree otherwise, you must accept this situation or find other work. Small businesses are often family operated and it is up to the business owner to decide how he wants to operate. When ‘outsiders’ are hired, they may not have the privilege of taking the afternoon off to mow their lawn as family members may do. Such behavior may be vexing but it is not ‘unjust.’
Another source of injustice is from your parents or other family members. I am an example of perceived injustice by my siblings. I was the oldest and the weakest of them all. I had a very bad heart problem and I tired very easily. (You can read about that in the chapter on dyslexia). The next born in my family was a brother who was 18 months younger than I. Children are not perceptive or understanding of many things. My brother was often asked to do things and I was ‘babied’ in his view. This was not un-noticed by my brother who responded as you would expect with sometimes very vocal protests of “It’s not fair!”
My parents could have noticed the situation and made appropriate explanation and compensation, but they didn’t and that is another story. My brother became my competitor in everything that he could manage. My next brother and sister soon learned to recognize the same ‘abuse’ and reacted accordingly. It was not that we had active conflict, but there was always the undercurrent that implied that I was the favorite child of my parents and that the younger children carried my burden. Actually, because I was the oldest, I naturally fell into the top spot. Even after I was married, when my father needed some appropriate help or just wanted to talk to someone he would come to me.
My mother was much the same way. Even when she was very old, she wanted to talk to me. This conception of ‘favoritism’ lasted all of our lives together.
I suppose that there is a lesson in all of this for people who want to figure it out. My parents made me to be ‘special’ for a reason that my siblings didn’t understand. Some parents ‘play favorites’ for much less valid reasons. For this reason, parents, especially fathers, have an opportunity to develop a ‘special’ relationship with each child. They can have things that the do with each child that they don’t do with their other children.
In a comparative way, I did the same kind of thing with a grandson who was having a severe identity problem. I taught him to do some ‘magic tricks’ that his brothers and sisters didn’t know how to do. This gave him something ‘special’.
Fathers tell daughters who husbands are by the way he treats her mother. What is particularly damaging is for a father to ignore, or worse, abuse his daughter. Abuse is not necessarily what first comes to mind. This is one of my favorite subjects. I will talk more about that in the chapter on ‘maximizing your parenting.’
What can you do if you feel that you are unjustly treated by your parents? There is probably not much if you are a child caught in this situation except ‘hang in there’. If you believe that you are really abused, first consider your age, especially if you are a girl and you are developing the beautiful emotional qualities that will define you as a woman. Also, if you are a teen aged boy, you have similar problems relating to your perception of your maturity and competence. If you are between 13 and 16 years old – more or less, be careful of what you call ‘abuse’. You are at an age when is very difficult for your parents to exercise their legal and moral responsibility towards you. You know a little bit and your developing hormones are struggling for expression. Your friends may agree with your belief that you are abused. Your friends are in the same emotional and ‘ignorant’ boat. For further development of this subject, please read the chapter of ‘maximizing peer pressure’.
Be careful of what you say in school, especially to school counselors. They are required by law to report suspected abuse to legal authorities who are empowered to remove you from your home and bring charges against your parents - all because ‘it was your turn to wash the dishes.
There are many things operating during this time of turmoil. We have the frustration of parents as they try to balance their time and effort for providing for their family’s needs and meeting their own personal needs while dealing with the immature attitudes and understandings of their children. It is likely that parents are facing new challenges and they are ‘learning’ as they are ‘teaching’. (It has been said that children are the product of unskilled labor.) Parents do make mistakes in judgment and they do have gaps in their understanding. Parents are ‘only human’ and although the mean well and do the best that they can, they are by no means perfect. Still, in order to do the work that is required of them, they must act with authority.
Against this, we have the struggle of teenagers who are in the process of becoming adults and believe that they understand far more than they really do. The have the reinforcement of the prevailing attitude of their peer group. Teenagers do not see their parents as people who are fighting a big battle to balance their resources against the many needs. In their age-appropriate immaturity; they are still somewhat ignorant, proud, arrogant, and selfish. (These attributes are characteristic of an immature person and are not intended to be judgmental.) This leaves a teenager, who has all of the understanding he is able to hold, struggling the best he can with whatever coping skills he may have. It is no wonder that there is ‘teenage rebellion’ with charges of; ‘It’s not fair’.
I feel a ‘rant’ coming on, so hold on to your seat!
We have the relatively recent advent of schools that teach against parental authority by ‘taking over’ in areas of sex education and social issues. Providing contraceptives and even abortion services, only fans the flame. If there is one area of prevailing ‘injustice’ this is it. Parents are surreptitiously denied their legally responsible role and responsibility to rear their children by those ‘who know better.’
The destruction of traditional values is a deliberate attempt by certain political activists who began their crusade over 100 years ago. This began as part of a scheme of communists to weaken the moral structure of a target country to soften their will, making their overthrow easier. Actually, England was the first objective of Marx and Lenin, but when they saw the gross immorality of the Russian college students, they knew that they had found their objective country.
During the mid - 50’s the movement became more productive as they found opportunities to get into public service. School boards were a prime target. I have read their reports on the subject. As they slowly came to dominate the system, it became easier for them to make the changes that have resulted in ‘political correctness’ and the loss of our traditional value system. As a college student, I was required to study sociology. The introduction to our textbook said that the tendency of society is to lower its standards to the lowest level expressed by anyone group. We certainly see this happening in our society, don’t we? ‘Traditional values’ are lost and the ‘political correctness’ is our standard. This is in spite of the fact that the vast majority of our people believe in ‘traditional values’.
States have laws against adults who contribute to the delinquency of a minor child. My state, Ohio, provides a $1,000 fine and 30 days in jail for every day that an adult contributes to the delinquency of a minor. Inappropriate sexual activity of minors has ‘always’ delinquent behavior - until the ‘new morality’.
‘Political correctness’ been accepted by academia and the main stream media. This remains unchallenged except for religious organizations. This debauchery has always proceeded the fall of every government. Why do we let this happen? Why can’t we hold the particular school officials accountable in a court of law for the wanton and flagrant violation of the law as they advocate, promote and supply the practice of juvenile delinquency?
The rejoinder; “everybody does it” is a very weak excuse on the face of it, isn’t it? Isn’t it time for ‘decent’ people to ‘get their head of the sand, and take action? Isn’t it about time to file suit against those who commit this ‘crime’?
There now, I feel better already!
A huge part of our injustice problem is due to the shrinking of our world as we relate to and feel responsible regarding abuse in other countries. As I write, Syria is killing thousands of its citizens. Egypt has just had a blood bath and Libya has just ousted its dictator with much bloodshed. The western world holds itself responsible to intercede in behalf of the abused people. This attitude and position is a relatively new social development as we cry: “Injustice!” This disparity in values has existed ‘forever’. Our United Nations and before them, The League of Nations represented a coalition of countries it their effort to fight ‘injustice’. This is a new development in world affairs brought on by our exploding technology. In the times of my grandparents, people’s concerns were much more local and sailing ships carried goods from New Your to San Francisco by sailing around the tip of South America.
Even now, there are many tribes and cultures whose practices are ‘unjust’ by our standards. Some Philippine cultures require a widow to cut off a finger if she becomes a widow. Some African cultures practice the sexual mutilation of young girls. Slavery is still widely practiced In Africa and the near east. Slaves dig in diamond mines in chains. Just how far does our concern and involvement for justice go into the world?
The purpose of this book is to help peuple to accomplish the best that they can with the resources they have. There has to be a limit to our concern somewhere or we will spend all of our resources in fighting a problem that we can’t win. My personal attitude and position is this; if I can’t do anything about it, I am wasting my time and resources. I will direct my effort toward those things that I can do.