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[personal profile] freeptop
One of the arguments I've frequently heard when it comes to things like paying for public education, or helping the poor, or, really, pretty much any social program, is frequently expressed as, "why should I pay for something that only helps someone else?" (And yes, I've heard it in almost those exact words). The answer is simple: because the whole point of "civilization" is that the stronger and wealthier help out the weaker and poorer. In return, we gain an overall stronger society, in that we can lift up those who are worse off.

Contrary to the claims of some, that isn't a "Communist" idea. Communism takes it to an extreme, but the basic idea of the strong supporting the weak is the whole foundation of any type of civilization. Otherwise, you end up with everyone fending for themselves alone. Which, incidentally, is the very definition of "Anarchy".

Date: 2011-07-24 05:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] talldean.livejournal.com
"we gain an overall stronger society" is the probably the wrong phrasing to convince those who disagree with you on this one. Specific fearmongering examples are probably what you want for this one.


- Without helping the poor, crime rates skyrocket. You'll get mugged or shot. It's really cheap to feed a guy for $3 a day; it's really, really fucking expensive to put him in jail for $30000 a year.

- Without healthcare available to all, the people around you are much sicker... and more likely to make you sick. Vaccines prevent epidemics. Making sure a poor kid with a busted leg doesn't stay busted gives him a chance to not be poor, and not be stealing your car later in life.

- Without education, the Chinese beat us badly. India beats us badly. In a generation - when your kids are adults - we'll be absolutely screwed. If we can't fill the jobs, they're going to fill the jobs for us.


In a perfect world, you wouldn't need to spend money on others to accomplish these things. This world isn't perfect, so we might as well admit that and do the best we can.

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July 2011

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