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Reader Opinion: Humanize or monetize

Societies make choices about priorities. Often that choice is between focusing on people and the quality of human life, or focusing on wealth and possessions.

Societies make choices about priorities. Often that choice is between focusing on people and the quality of human life, or focusing on wealth and possessions.

A focus on wealth and possessions tends to treat people as monetized resources and tends to use wealth as a measure of value and prominence, developing into a society in which a small elite of the rich and powerful are served by the rest of the citizenry.

What is lost in that scramble for personal wealth is the reality that it takes a society to produce wealth and that it is never truly created only by individuals. The wealth is built on the structure and stability that the entire society provides and funds. There is a social structure, and workers and public services that are necessary to produce that wealth, not to mention a populace with a disposable income to actually purchase the products.

The other way wealth can be produced in a dysfunctional society is through the exploitation of the populace and finding markets elsewhere.

Progress, vision, individual success and wealth are only possible because we all stand on the shoulders of the giant of the strong and stable society that America has provided.

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In a society that focuses on humanizing the populace, the wealth produced by the society is used first to maintain and sustain that society. The personal accumulation of wealth is secondary. This is the heart of democracy, a society in which a successful life is defined as being a good citizen and a good person and not by the amount of wealth or value of possessions one has.

One choice humanizes a society and the other dehumanizes a society, treating people like objects. It is always our right to insist on the one that serves humanity and our society best.

Bob Passi

Baxter

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