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The Struggle For Humanity

By Robert J. Burrowes

02 April, 2014

Sociologists, political scientists, activists of various persuasions and
many others often describe social stratification in terms of such measures
as class, race and gender. There is much talk in the academic and other
literature about the working class, the middle class and the ruling class,
for example. And about relationships defined by such factors as race,
gender, religion, employment, income and other measures.

In contrast, I would like to briefly highlight a measure of social
stratification that gets virtually no attention: the social division
between those who are sane and those who are insane. At first glimpse, you
might think that there is little to discuss here, given that those who are
insane are supposed to be locked away in psychiatric institutions or, even
worse, prisons. And the rest of us are walking around freely. But it isn't

There is a great deal wrong with our world and any psychologically healthy
person is able to follow reputable news sources, consult the scientific,
economic and other relevant literature when appropriate, and to consider
and evaluate the evidence presented in relation to the environment, the
economy and society. And take action accordingly.

The most casual perusal of the state of our world will reveal the ongoing
threat of nuclear obliteration (on top of the ongoing and rapidly
spreading radioactive contamination generated by Fukushima and the use of
Depleted Uranium weapons), ongoing phenomenal levels of military spending,
and the endless push from corporate and other elite interests for more
wars. The global economy is teetering on the brink of collapse and, of
course, from the viewpoint of those 50,000 people who starve to death each
day or those one billion people who live in a state of semi-starvation and
abject poverty in many parts of the world, it has already 'collapsed'. And
you might have noticed the ongoing attacks on everything from our civil
liberties and right to privacy to our right to eat healthy food that has
not been poisoned and/or genetically mutilated.

And if that is not enough to cause you concern, we also have a global
environment that is under siege, with the collapse of civilisation now
possible within a decade although, hopefully, we will have longer to avert
it than this. The climate deniers might be finally in retreat but their
backup strategy to convince us that immediate action is unnecessary
because it will be mid-century or even 2100 before civilisation unravels
is now being implemented with vigour. While most scientists are inclined
to be conservative in their forecasts of how quickly civilisation will
unravel the Earth is a highly complex set of ecological systems making
precise predictions difficult, and reputations and research funding are
easily lost if a forecast is wrong there is a solid consensus that the
time to act is now (if not a decade or more ago). Whatever the timeframe
therefore (and our timeframe might be limited to just one day if an
accidental or intentional nuclear war is launched), the fact is that we
are generating a 'perfect storm' as a result of our multiple, massive and
unrelenting assaults on the environment which are now breaching one
'tipping point' after another. In this context, it is wise to be
conservative in our estimate of the Earth's capacity to withstand this
assault. The downside for not doing so is simply too great.

More importantly, from my viewpoint as a social scientist and nonviolent
activist, I understand only too well why it is difficult to mobilise
people to change and how long this can take. Whatever the physical science
says, my research and activist experience convince me that, from the
viewpoint of mobilisation, time is very short, particularly given how much
we need to do differently.

Despite the overwhelming evidence that we are now staring our own
extinction in the face, the global elite is still acting to further
concentrate resources in its own hands and to thwart any measure designed
to move us in the direction of peace, justice and ecological
sustainability. It is time to stop pretending that these people are acting
in defense of 'white privilege', 'male domination' or even some 'class
interest'. They are insane and have no coherent conception of their own
interest, let alone the interest of their children or anyone else if this
interest is defined as a life that is lived with integrity, dignity,
meaning and fulfilment within an amenable social setting and vibrant
natural environment.

Insanity is widely understood to refer to a state of mind that prevents
normal perception, behaviour or social interaction; it describes someone
who is considered to be seriously mentally ill. And this is an accurate
description of the global elite and those who serve it whether they be in
political, business, legal, psychiatric, corporate media, academic or
other circles. If you want to read more about this, you can do so in these
sources, which reference further reading: 'The Global Elite is Insane'
http://www.countercurrents.org/burrowes050214.htm , 'The  Wolves of Psycho
Street: America's Economic Enslavement by the Psychopathic Corporate
Elite' http://www.garynull.com/pdf/Psycho-Street_Final.pdf , 'Chomsky Talks
about Psychopaths and Sociopaths'
http://www.opednews.com/articles/Chomsky-Talks-about-Psych-by-Rob-Kall-Corporations_Health-Mental-Sociopath-Narcissism_Narcissism_Psychopath-140215-378.html ,
'Psychopaths and Sociopaths'
http://www.opednews.com/populum/seriespage.php?r=5 and 'Sociopathic
Society: A People's Sociology of the United States'
But why are individual members of the global elite insane? For the same
reason that anyone else becomes insane: it is the outcome of being
terrorised by the violence inflicted on them as a child. For a
comprehensive explanation of this, see 'Why Violence?'

Ideally, we should provide appropriate emotional support to these
individuals so that they can heal psychologically and become a meaningful
member of a community in which solidarity with all life is the hallmark of
society, not the compulsive accumulation of personal wealth and the use of
(direct and structural) violence to get it. Until this happens, however,
we will need to resist their insanity and violence strategically.

So let me tell you what some sane people are doing about our shared
problems. They are resisting this violence so that we might all yet have a

These people include those ordinary people and grassroots organisations
who have signed the pledge of 'The People's Charter to Create a Nonviolent
World' http://thepeoplesnonviolencecharter.wordpress.com thus publicly
declaring their commitment to work to end human violence in all of its
manifestations. One way of doing this, for example, is to become involved
in 'The Flame Tree Project to Save Life on Earth'
http://tinyurl.com/flametree which is a simple way for individuals,
households and communities to tackle the full range of environmental
problems, irrespective of what governments and corporations do.

So far, many individuals and organisations in 65 countries have signed the
Nonviolence Charter. Signatories include many prominent people but mainly
those (extraordinary) ordinary people, like you and I, who must make the
commitment to making a difference if we are to survive. Here are some of
these people and their inspirational efforts and organisations.

Marianne Perez de Fransius is the founder of Peace is Sexy
http://www.peaceissexy.net/ in Mozambique which shows the mainstream media
how to portray peace 'as sexy, engaging, fun, and possible'; Daniel Dalai
is founder of the inspirational Earthgardens
http://riverprincess.tripod.com/in in Bolivia which nurtures the
leadership potential of girls; John Seed directs the Rainforest
Information Centre http://www.rainforestinfo.org.au/ based in Australia
and is one of the Earth's great rainforest defenders; Ram Dongol works at
SPACE http://spacenepal.org.np/ in Nepal which envisions 'an inclusive,
peace loving and prosperous Nepalese society where all children enjoy
equally the positive cultural, social and economic benefits of the 21st
century by getting better education opportunity'; Margaret Owen is the
inexhaustible Director of Widows for Peace Through Democracy
http://www.widowsforpeace.org/ in the UK which campaigns to 'ensure that
widows' voices are heard by their governments, so that every widow
[including child widow] is protected by law from discrimination, violence
and abuse, and can enjoy her full human rights as an equal and valuable
member of society'; Sami Rasouli organises the incredible nonviolent
Muslim Peacemaker Teams http://www.mpt-iraq.org/ in Iraq; Sandy Oestreich
works with the National Equal Rights Amendment Alliance
http://www.2passera.org/ in the USA which campaigns for equal rights for
women ('which is already in place in every nation created since WWII') in
the United States; and Rene Wadlow, based in France, is the President of
the Association of World Citizens http://www.worldcitizensunited.org/ 'a
transnational network of women and men working together for a more just
world society'.

In summary, humans are on the brink of precipitating our own extinction
because a substantial proportion of the population including all of the
global elite and most of its agents has been terrorised into insanity
during childhood. Unless we radically alter our approach to parenting and
all of our social institutions so that they nurture, rather than destroy,
the genetic potential of each human being, we are doomed to extinction,
whether sooner or later. The struggle to save humanity is, obviously, a
monumental undertaking. And will require fearless endeavour in pursuit of
this objective by those of us who remain sane enough to recognise,
acknowledge and act on the problem.

In conclusion, therefore, you are invited to consider this point: Are you
sane enough to consider the evidence and to join (or recommit yourself to)
the fight for human survival? If you are, then you might like to sign the
Nonviolence Charter mentioned above so that we know that you are with us.

Human beings will end violence or violence will end human beings.

Robert J. Burrowes has a lifetime commitment to understanding and
ending human violence. He has done extensive research since 1966 in an
effort to understand why human beings are violent and has been a
nonviolent activist since 1981. He is the author of 'Why Violence?'
http://tinyurl.com/whyviolence His email address is flametree@riseup.net
and his website is at http://robertjburrowes.wordpress.com



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