This system is built on the assumption that we will behave in the way that it wants us to.
So what if we do not?
What if we behave in ways the system does not account for,
Or predict and prepare for?
This system is beguiling,
And just as it was made greedy,
By its creators’ gluttony,
It will try to fashion you in its image.
This system is built on the assumption that,
We will be greedy and prioritise gain and quantity,
Over authenticity and humanity.
It didn’t know that you were too kind,
To buy goods that were made by distant people,
Who live far away from home,
So, that their kids grow up with below-minimum-wage paychecks instead of parents.
It didn’t know that you were too confident,
To spend so many hours of the day thinking about how you should look,
Rather than who you should be,
Who you are.
It didn’t know that you cared more about our planet and its inhabitants,
Than the need to trade in your phone for a newer model,
Sending the old one off to some electric dump,
Somewhere in a developing country,
Where the people breath in poisonous gases,
That come from the burning all day long.
It didn’t know that you were too humane,
To eat food that came from farmers that are being strangled by corporations,
And animals that are born to die.
It didn’t know that you would think your children deserved an education,
That encouraged thought and passion, not obedience.
And it didn’t know that you would prefer to share,
So, that many could live,
Rather than hoard,
So that you could splurge.
The system didn’t account for you.
It accounted for someone who would be greedy enough that,
Wherever placed in the pecking order,
They would do what it took to get higher.
And if, for them, perhaps the greed were not enough,
It would abuse and degrade them while they were at the bottom,
Until they couldn’t bear but to fight to get out,
To get up.
The system did not know that you were kind.
And it did not know that you would be able to see through it,
No matter how many times it told you that this is simply what life is.
It didn’t know that you would strive for happiness,
And question it when it asked you to sell your days,
All your thinking time,
And your body,
For a paycheck.
This system does not account for you.
It accounted for someone who would behave as it asked,
And swallow its abuse for a dollar.
Like all things,
This system has a survival instinct,
And to survive it must tell you it is strong so that you obey.
It is not strong.
And you can see it ripping at the seams because of its greed.
The system is built on the hope that you will be greedy enough to sustain it.
It did not account for you being better than that.
It did not account for you being kind.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Apprentice Editor: Kathryn Muyskens / Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo Credit: bhumikabhatia at Flickr