Your editorial with a new year’s message, in my view, is little more than hollow words at a time when the majority of individuals and families face enormous trials and tribulations.
You acknowledge “the 99 per cent of us who aren’t part of that privileged percentile at the top.” However, you fail to identify why or even how the political system that exists, not only preserves at all costs the privileges afforded by this grave inequity, but also exacerbates the growing social and economic chasm and the irreconcilable contradictions that exist between the rich and the poor.
It is diversionary to suggest that the “downtrodden,” (narrowly defined as the homeless or those who suffer from mental health illness and addictions), should simply exercise more self-control in this ‘best of all possible worlds.’
As for those struggling to pay the rent or trying to make ends meet on fixed incomes or inadequate social supports, they should be grateful for “words of comfort” and “kind gestures” from volunteers?
If that doesn’t work, will Plan B mean calling for help from a divine being or perhaps a fellow in a red suit with a bag full of magic ‘trickle-down’ economic benefits? And, what’s the best option for those who remain…scrounge for things damaged, discarded or destroyed?
The only “demons” mentioned are the plethora of drugs and drinks available in a socio-economic system that sustains and benefits from both. This ‘best-in-class’ liberal democracy then freely demeans its most vulnerable citizens as ‘victims of misfortune’ or else demonizes them as criminals.
No political party, level of government, or their prized partnerships with the private sector have prevented or alleviated the perilous crises that we face in housing and health care, let alone climate change and global security.
More food banks and homeless shelters are not the solution.
Those who govern have shown they are neither willing nor are they prepared to lead and implement fundamental changes needed to ensure real justice, our well-being and to sustain the place we all call home.
Humanity deserves no less. Our future and our survival on this planet are at stake.