If you’re poor, the only way you’re likely to injure someone is the old traditional way: artisanal violence, we could call it – by hands, by knife, by club, or maybe modern hands-on violence, by gun or by car.
But if you’re tremendously wealthy, you can practice industrial-scale violence without any manual labor on your own part. You can, say, build a sweatshop factory that will collapse in Bangladesh and kill more people than any hands-on mass murderer ever did, or you can calculate risk and benefit about putting poisons or unsafe machines into the world, as manufacturers do every day. If you’re the leader of a country, you can declare war and kill by the hundreds of thousands or millions. And the nuclear superpowers – the US and Russia – still hold the option of destroying quite a lot of life on Earth.
So do the carbon barons. But when we talk about violence, we almost always talk about violence from below, not above.
Let’s Call Climate Change What It Really Is—Violence | Alternet (via guerrillamamamedicine)
But when we talk about violence, we almost always talk about violence from below, not above.
Important. And once you start seeing it, you start seeing it everywhere. I live in a very polluted third world capital. The bad air quality literally causes thousands of premature deaths every year. None of the entities causing it are held responsible, although the effect of their actions results in indiscriminate murder and especially does in the old, the very young, and disabled people. Ah, but no. Society is all condemning of face-to-face intentional killing, and gives no fucks about the fact that science can prove you're more likely to drop dead from breathing poison. Or long term exposure to carcinogens. Or a dozen other things that people can't prevent with individualistic, band-aid "healthy living" solutions. We live in a world where millions of people are dying from preventable diseases, and have been brainwashed into attributing their own ill health to bad genes and similar bullshit. Your genes are not the problem. The complete and utter lack of consequences for astronomically rich people doing things that kill poorer people slowly, in subtle ways, is the problem.