The Power of Winning

Mrs. Obama visited Washington DC schools on Women’s day, and she told the students:   “All that matters is where you are and where you want to be.”

I’ve tried that system, and it works, more or less, in America, if I am willing to beat up on other people (or if I believe that other people are born losers so it’s OK to beat up on them) in order to get where I want to be.  Yes it’s possible in America that we might get somewhere better than we are.  No we will not become First Lady, if that is where we want to be.  The job is taken; the rest of us are the losers.

In the good old days we burned witches at the stake with no more evidence than that they were not winners.

We teach little kids in school that “everyone is a winner.”  Reality check!  That makes no sense at all.  They know it’s a lie — a winner’s lie and they aren’t winners — so they learn to disrespect the school system – and themselves.  They know they are not a winner.  Are they the ONLY one who isn’t a winner?.

The Angola 3 have been kept in solitary confinement more than 30 years — apparently for the sole purpose of proving that they are losers.

I’ll tell you what I really believe — I believe this is the belief system that grows our wars.  We Americans can’t even function without someone to feel better than, and if we aren’t it we burn inside because we think of ourselves as inadequate in some undefined, illogical way.  We need our losers.  If we can’t find someone to be better than onshore — we go off to Iraq to beat up on innocent bystanders.

In some other blog I will probably rant on about my opinion of people who make their way in life by being losers.  That’s not right either.  But if your culture is fixated on winners — then at least half of us will be required to function as losers.

The Vietnamese Buddhist, Thich Nhat Hanh, said that: “the peace movement in this country (America) is very capable of writing a protest letter but it can not write a love letter.”

I can stand on the corner of George Bush Drive and University during this upcoming peace day demonstration, Thursday the 26th at 5:30 pm and I can wave a sign, and I can be standing alongside people who are so filled with their war against war that the hate vibes would curdle your heart.  That’s not peace.

It’s all about not losing.

2 Responses

  1. Capitalism and patriarchy are inherently based on hierarchy, with the assumption that if you are not on top, you are nothing. Even a co-equal relationship is not acceptable, as it implies weakness or defectiveness. I believe that is why extreme aggression by dominant group members is often directed against members of non-dom groups that challenge the hierarchy. It is both an instrumental use of power, and retaliation for a perceived insult to their psyche.and to their self concept. To change this, we’ll need to socialize children to predicate their sense of security and well-being on connection rather than “winning.” Since we can’t do this in a void, it would be helpful to change the social structure so that the rewards for cooperative behavior outweigh the rewards for competition. Guess we all deserve to have a utopian moment occasionally.

  2. Too true Wendy,

    I hope we are not the only two people who recognize the weakness in this social structure.

    Lynn

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