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"they chose to do this" narrative as an excuse (when it is really not a choice) (1 Viewer)

Gatorman

Supreme Elite Maximum Tier
Looking at a lot of posts, I see the "they chose to do this" as a narrative device and if we are learning anything, we are learning that not all groups have the same choices as others:

"They chose to live here" as an excuse for areas that have bad schools or environmental issues or flood planes etc when redlining, private equity buying homes, etc shows people don't have as much choice where they get to live as one thinks.

"they chose to work for that pay" is an excuse used when people have to work multiple jobs to have a living wage when it is industry that sets the wages and when workers now (after covid) have decided they will not work for those substandard wages, people blame them on being lazy, not on the business trying to nickle and dime them.

"they chose to go into debt" when "whatever" (Student loans, cars, homes, etc) is not a choice when the barrier to entry is a college degree and the barrier in getting to work for the most part is a set of wheels (outside of metro areas) and it is not like colleges are in anyway honest (whether it is on line or a storied institution) about job prospects for those with a degree from their school and there is no penalty (Trump university and their ilk) when they have left you saddled in debt.

"they chose to use a "predatory" company" when the US doesn't have an accessible banking system (ie post office banking) and Banks throw all sorts of fees at you to take your savings from you.

"they chose to eat crap" in talking about obesity when food in the US is not regulated in such a way to actually be "clean food" without paying a premium for it.

There are a lot of "they chose" expressions out there but do people really have as easy a time with choices as we think?

"They chose to have all that information public" when you cannot own a cell phone in the US without basically agreeing to make your life an open book.

This is not as political as the rest of this area.  I think Choice, especially for those in lower economic situations and people of color is not as cut and dry as you think...

 
Good post.  I don't agree, but you're right that this is an argument that cuts across a bunch of different issues and represents a constructive source of disagreement between the two "sides."  

The flip side of this is that people on my end would argue that folks on your "side" are too quick to rob adults of their own agency.  For example, it sucks that the government subsidizes unhealthy food.  But I have no problem keeping my weight under control with exercise and diet, and it feels insulting to suggest that other people can't do the same unless there's something physically wrong with them.  (Insulting to them, not to me).

Could make for a good thread.

 
The flip side of this is that people on my end would argue that folks on your "side" are too quick to rob adults of their own agency.  For example, it sucks that the government subsidizes unhealthy food.  But I have no problem keeping my weight under control with exercise and diet, and it feels insulting to suggest that other people can't do the same unless there's something physically wrong with them.  (Insulting to them, not to me).
It seems the second bolded sentence isn't really a response to the first bolded sentence, though.  If (and I'm not saying it is, but if...) it's true that unsubsidized, healthy food is too expensive for those on limited incomes, then exercise and diet isn't going to solve the issue that certain folks can't afford healthy food.

 
The flip side of this is that people on my end would argue that folks on your "side" are too quick to rob adults of their own agency.  For example, it sucks that the government subsidizes unhealthy food.  But I have no problem keeping my weight under control with exercise and diet, and it feels insulting to suggest that other people can't do the same unless there's something physically wrong with them.  (Insulting to them, not to me).


I don't think it robs people of agency and I don't think it's insulting to say that a specific policy, in the aggregate, will cause fewer people to vote, or people to eat less healthily, or cause people not to save enough money. I feel like that's the exact sort of information that the government SHOULD be using to set policy.  Even if specific individuals are capable of voting or eating well or saving money.

 
Looking at a lot of posts, I see the "they chose to do this" as a narrative device and if we are learning anything, we are learning that not all groups have the same choices as others:

"They chose to live here" as an excuse for areas that have bad schools or environmental issues or flood planes etc when redlining, private equity buying homes, etc shows people don't have as much choice where they get to live as one thinks.

"they chose to work for that pay" is an excuse used when people have to work multiple jobs to have a living wage when it is industry that sets the wages and when workers now (after covid) have decided they will not work for those substandard wages, people blame them on being lazy, not on the business trying to nickle and dime them.

"they chose to go into debt" when "whatever" (Student loans, cars, homes, etc) is not a choice when the barrier to entry is a college degree and the barrier in getting to work for the most part is a set of wheels (outside of metro areas) and it is not like colleges are in anyway honest (whether it is on line or a storied institution) about job prospects for those with a degree from their school and there is no penalty (Trump university and their ilk) when they have left you saddled in debt.

"they chose to use a "predatory" company" when the US doesn't have an accessible banking system (ie post office banking) and Banks throw all sorts of fees at you to take your savings from you.

"they chose to eat crap" in talking about obesity when food in the US is not regulated in such a way to actually be "clean food" without paying a premium for it.

There are a lot of "they chose" expressions out there but do people really have as easy a time with choices as we think?

"They chose to have all that information public" when you cannot own a cell phone in the US without basically agreeing to make your life an open book.

This is not as political as the rest of this area.  I think Choice, especially for those in lower economic situations and people of color is not as cut and dry as you think...
This is great on the extremes.  Most of America isn't living in the extremes.

People truly in poverty maybe can't afford fresh fruits in vegetables (13%).  Middle Class America can.  Many of them buy them.  Many of them buy KFC and McDonalds frequently.  And I get that 13% is a pretty decent chunk of the population--it suggests that 87% of people do have food choices.  

You can absolutely own a cell phone and not make your life an open book.  You don't have to download Facebook/Twitter/Etc.  You can now actually decline to share info with apps.  

Lots of jobs still don't require a degree.  We don't put nearly enough emphasis on trade schools.  The idea that college is the barrier to a job is more harmful than anything involving higher education.  Kids have long been taught "College is just what you do after high school."  And many of them are 18 year old kids with no clue what they want to do and no business making decisions that cost them tens of thousands of dollars.  But we go ahead and let them make those decisions.  

 
As long as you don't go down the "/antiwork" road...

I'm sure we can all agree we each had different challenges and difficulties in our lives we could have used as excuses to not get where we are. Some people have to fight harder and longer, but that isn't what I see being the difference.

The "Choice" I would focus on is the one to quit.  To not play the game you have to play to succeed.  And then to blame the world for you not having the life you want.

We have all seen those who had it "easier" aren't always able to hack it, and quit.  We have all seen those who had it "harder" persevere, refusing to quit.  And everything in between.

The choice is personal responsibility for your outcomes.

 
The "Choice" I would focus on is the one to quit.  To not play the game you have to play to succeed.  And then to blame the world for you not having the life you want.
If we can’t complain about how the game is played, then the game won’t change.

ETA: For the most part I think positively of /anti-work people and hope they succeed in making changes to American culture.

 
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This is not as political as the rest of this area.  I think Choice, especially for those in lower economic situations and people of color is not as cut and dry as you think...


I was one of the poorest kids you could have painted  ...... yes, it was cut and dried. I worked hard, made good choices, left my zip code and went into the world and did pretty well overall I think for no college education and coming from very poor

"They chose to live here" as an excuse for areas that have bad schools or environmental issues or flood planes etc when redlining, private equity buying homes, etc shows people don't have as much choice where they get to live as one thinks.

I did - I chose to go to college, chose to quit, chose the places I wanted to go - yes

"they chose to work for that pay" is an excuse used when people have to work multiple jobs to have a living wage when it is industry that sets the wages and when workers now (after covid) have decided they will not work for those substandard wages, people blame them on being lazy, not on the business trying to nickle and dime them.

I did that too - fast food/restaurants. I was homeless one summer. .... then i got into telecommunications and figured out quick the contracting world. I lived in the camper shell of my Nissan single cab truck for one summer, eating out of a cooler.

"they chose to go into debt" when "whatever" (Student loans, cars, homes, etc) is not a choice when the barrier to entry is a college degree and the barrier in getting to work for the most part is a set of wheels (outside of metro areas) and it is not like colleges are in anyway honest (whether it is on line or a storied institution) about job prospects for those with a degree from their school and there is no penalty (Trump university and their ilk) when they have left you saddled in debt.

I did that too because my parents had nothing to help. I had nobody to help, so I worked

"they chose to use a "predatory" company" when the US doesn't have an accessible banking system (ie post office banking) and Banks throw all sorts of fees at you to take your savings from you.

I didn't play the credit card/loan game much - my choice

"they chose to eat crap" in talking about obesity when food in the US is not regulated in such a way to actually be "clean food" without paying a premium for it.

oh gawd I ate cold cuts/chips/cokes ... my meals out were McDonalds. However, I played a lot of sports , I hiked and was super active. 

 
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Congratulations


I don't need congrats, I didn't do it for any reasons other than I just wanted to HAVE something

I didn't eat steak, shrimp or anything like that until I was 16 and got a job washing dishes at a place that had a Friday night seafood buffet. At closing, as I washed the hot pans, I got to eat everything I wanted and I did !

I worked - hard. I was very frugal - I didn't drink or do drugs, I fished/hunted/hiked for my activities and was active all the time when I wasn't worked. The contractor supervisor saw all that - they kept me around for a reason. One job I remember there were like 40 people there on Monday. A man saw me and said he'd take me for his power crew - which was pulling heavy power cabling through 3 floors of a telco office. On Friday, they fired 35 people for poor performances - I was kept and 4 others

Hard work, good choices/decisions is not accidental. Its choice for almost all of us

 
If we can’t complain about how the game is played, then the game won’t change.

ETA: For the most part I think positively of /anti-work people and hope they succeed in making changes to American culture.


Oh, please complain... the game can suck.  We all sacrificed.  Continue to sacrifice.

But don't use it as an excuse to not do what you need to do.

 
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I was one of the poorest kids you could have painted  ...... yes, it was cut and dried. I worked hard, made good choices, left my zip code and went into the world and did pretty well overall I think for no college education and coming from poverty


Don't know you that well, so I do not want to come off as an D!ck when I say this but do you think that more of those who lived in your zip code would have been more successful of they were in a different zip code?

Yes, there are Hard workers and Loafers in every economic class, but the loafers in the higher classes have a better cushion and those in the lower classes have less room for error.

The Old Chris Rock joke about the neighborhood that he lives in includes him, Mary J Blige, and Eddie Murphy while the white guy living down the street is just a dentist resonates.

Choice in many respects is not really a choice.  Identifying these institutions or examples isn't crapping on America, it is (almost by definition) making a "More perfect Union"

 
I say this but do you think that more of those who lived in your zip code would have been more successful of they were in a different zip code?
Lots of truth in that. I moved my family from zip code 67216 years ago to zip code 80501 because of the opportunities I saw for my daughter growing up. 

 
Don't know you that well, so I do not want to come off as an D!ck when I say this but do you think that more of those who lived in your zip code would have been more successful of they were in a different zip code?


its not just the zip code - its the family unit too and all that

I have a buddy who had a little more than me and he's a millionaire, I have several buddies that had more than me growing up and they have less than I do now

Life is what we make it and while generational wealth and having really strong financial family helps ... its still about the choices of the individuals 

 
Good post.  I don't agree, but you're right that this is an argument that cuts across a bunch of different issues and represents a constructive source of disagreement between the two "sides."  

The flip side of this is that people on my end would argue that folks on your "side" are too quick to rob adults of their own agency.  For example, it sucks that the government subsidizes unhealthy food.  But I have no problem keeping my weight under control with exercise and diet, and it feels insulting to suggest that other people can't do the same unless there's something physically wrong with them.  (Insulting to them, not to me).

Could make for a good thread.
Agreed. I probably more philosophically align with you that I'd prefer the government to stay out of these particular spheres of life, but we'd be silly to simply argue that every person in the US has the same level of opportunities and we can't just blindly dismiss the OP's points. Definitely discussion-worthy topics. 

 
Good post.  I don't agree, but you're right that this is an argument that cuts across a bunch of different issues and represents a constructive source of disagreement between the two "sides."  

The flip side of this is that people on my end would argue that folks on your "side" are too quick to rob adults of their own agency.  For example, it sucks that the government subsidizes unhealthy food.  But I have no problem keeping my weight under control with exercise and diet, and it feels insulting to suggest that other people can't do the same unless there's something physically wrong with them.  (Insulting to them, not to me).

Could make for a good thread.
The government also subsidizes healthy food.

Also any talk at all of restrictions the same side gets upset. For example if you think people on food stamps shouldnt be allowed to buy 41 dollar ice cream cakes with them, you will get a whole slew of people arguing that is not ok to restrict. 

 
Looking at a lot of posts, I see the "they chose to do this" as a narrative device and if we are learning anything, we are learning that not all groups have the same choices as others:


My take is when many people say "They Chose To Do This", what they are really saying are two specific things

1) Everyone Has Their Own Problems And They Don't Have Time For Yours And That's Not Racist, That's Just How Life Works.  If we are talking about Black America, there are just clear diminishing returns to relentlessly bombarding the rest of America and telling them that they need to be ashamed of public policy and laws and government decisions that likely happened long before they were even born. You can't corner people and threaten them and demand compliance and expect no push back. That's exactly what the race hustler methodology entails. Corporate level extortion in exchange for not being "cancelled" in public for being called a racist. Do I think the majority of Black America acts this way? No. But enough of a cross section where it's a real problem. Everyone struggles somewhere. Everyone sleeps with some kind of demons at night. It's beyond arrogant for the BLM movement and the clear race hustlers out there to behave in a manner as if their problems for their group should be the priority over everyone else's problems by trying to choke out society by infusing racial politics into EVERYTHING. Education, entertainment, literature, music, sports, government, and on and on and on.

2) Nearly all Americans will likely support more pathways FOR OPPORTUNITY but NOT more pathways for some kind of ROB PETER TO PAY PAUL FOR SOME KIND OF "SOCIAL EQUITY".  Nearly all Americans want our children to have excellent schools that are well run, with good staffing and are efficient and help children develop into productive members of our society. All children. But you will get push back when you have this wide spread victim culture when much of it is just raced based extortion over demanding some kind of "EQUALITY OF OUTCOME"  Particularly when the massive cost eats away at opportunity for other groups. Some people have more of a zero margin for error than others. Some things are not fair. Lots of people across the racial spectrum are just insanely good looking. They were born with that advantage. Lots of those people have doors open to them because of their looks. Is that fair? But it's part of the practical equation for life. We can't create public policy for "equity" so that unattractive people, against a social baseline, get some 'rebalancing'

https://geeksoncoffee.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/61-Nazanin-Boniadi-Sexy-Pictures-Are-Essentially-Attractive.jpg

This is Nazanin Boniadi. She caught attention while being in the Church Of Scientology for being one of their best ground level fund raisers. Look at her. She's model good looking. It's not hard for her to knock on a door to get someone to sign a petition or buy some amulet or donate to some cause or buy a bean pie. She generated so much attention she was hard vetted to be a potential public figure to be paired off with Tom Cruise to help push the Scientology agenda. Her entire acting career opportunities spawned from that attention, which was rooted in just being born ridiculously good looking.

You get dealt cards in life, you have to play them. If you say life is not fair, then you are right. If you say life needs to be "equitable" for outcome, then you have a different story you are trying to sell.

Pushing for "adult victims" doesn't sell very well to the public. However most will get behind public policy built around helping children. If the radical left held to that position, they'd simply do much better. If BLM held to that position, they wouldn't be dragged into the public right now for all their financial fraud. Adults have "choices", children do not.

Charles Barkley said it best. What you need are all these wealthy black celebrities who keep shouting racism and all this virtue signaling to just start and seed black owned businesses in mostly black communities and create jobs for black people there.  Or as Ice Cube likes to say over and over again - Dignity Comes With Dollars. Once you have lots of successful black owned businesses that help other black people and set a foothold with a black business owned coalition in a major city, then they have an effective political voice. Replicate that across America and now you have a national voting block that must be addressed. Political power to shift actual public policy doesn't stem from racial extortion, victim methodology, virtue signaling and being perceived as wildly arrogant by force feeding one groups problems over everyone else's in the entire country.

If you want favorable public policy, no one gives you that for nothing. Your group has to weaponize it's current advantages and create leverage to take it.

Life isn't fair. If Black America doesn't like that, then they have a choice to either sit down and cry or to get up and fight. But their leadership base has chosen NEITHER. What was chosen was to sit down, cry in the loudest way possible and pretend to fight so a few race grifters could buy some mansions for themselves. You can't blame the rest of America for that level of failure.

I'm going to be fair. What's happening to Black America is very complex. It is tragic. It is not fair. But the only ones who can save Black America right now is Black America itself. Until they come to terms with that reality, they will always be treated like anyone else in life who has absolutely no leverage at all.

 
Charles Barkley said it best. What you need are all these wealthy black celebrities who keep shouting racism and all this virtue signaling to just start and seed black owned businesses in mostly black communities and create jobs for black people there.  Or as Ice Cube likes to say over and over again - Dignity Comes With Dollars. Once you have lots of successful black owned businesses that help other black people and set a foothold with a black business owned coalition in a major city, then they have an effective political voice.


then we also need rich white people to infuse money into poor white American's to create white jobs in white communities

fair is fair, right ?

 
Why do you think victims make that choice?


don't think of it as a "victim"

a lot of people that never left my home town ... they are ok with their lives 

not much money, enough beer to drink, pot to smoke ... their trailers are warm, they do jobs that get things done, fish on the weekends etc

some have good solid honorable jobs, no education, work hard, live ethically and morally ... nothing wrong with that 

but my parents? had every chance in the world to be much more than they were - this is the United States. They didn't choose to do those things, that's ok. they're not "victims" to be like that though. Just chose a different path

 
There is the individual and there is the aggregate.  It is more accurate to apply these sorts of things in the aggregate than it is to an individual, similar to stereotypes and generalizations.

 
My take is when many people say "They Chose To Do This", what they are really saying are two specific things

1) Everyone Has Their Own Problems And They Don't Have Time For Yours And That's Not Racist, That's Just How Life Works.  If we are talking about Black America, there are just clear diminishing returns to relentlessly bombarding the rest of America and telling them that they need to be ashamed of public policy and laws and government decisions that likely happened long before they were even born. You can't corner people and threaten them and demand compliance and expect no push back. That's exactly what the race hustler methodology entails. Corporate level extortion in exchange for not being "cancelled" in public for being called a racist. Do I think the majority of Black America acts this way? No. But enough of a cross section where it's a real problem. Everyone struggles somewhere. Everyone sleeps with some kind of demons at night. It's beyond arrogant for the BLM movement and the clear race hustlers out there to behave in a manner as if their problems for their group should be the priority over everyone else's problems by trying to choke out society by infusing racial politics into EVERYTHING. Education, entertainment, literature, music, sports, government, and on and on and on.

2) Nearly all Americans will likely support more pathways FOR OPPORTUNITY but NOT more pathways for some kind of ROB PETER TO PAY PAUL FOR SOME KIND OF "SOCIAL EQUITY".  Nearly all Americans want our children to have excellent schools that are well run, with good staffing and are efficient and help children develop into productive members of our society. All children. But you will get push back when you have this wide spread victim culture when much of it is just raced based extortion over demanding some kind of "EQUALITY OF OUTCOME"  Particularly when the massive cost eats away at opportunity for other groups. Some people have more of a zero margin for error than others. Some things are not fair. Lots of people across the racial spectrum are just insanely good looking. They were born with that advantage. Lots of those people have doors open to them because of their looks. Is that fair? But it's part of the practical equation for life. We can't create public policy for "equity" so that unattractive people, against a social baseline, get some 'rebalancing'

https://geeksoncoffee.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/61-Nazanin-Boniadi-Sexy-Pictures-Are-Essentially-Attractive.jpg

This is Nazanin Boniadi. She caught attention while being in the Church Of Scientology for being one of their best ground level fund raisers. Look at her. She's model good looking. It's not hard for her to knock on a door to get someone to sign a petition or buy some amulet or donate to some cause or buy a bean pie. She generated so much attention she was hard vetted to be a potential public figure to be paired off with Tom Cruise to help push the Scientology agenda. Her entire acting career opportunities spawned from that attention, which was rooted in just being born ridiculously good looking.

You get dealt cards in life, you have to play them. If you say life is not fair, then you are right. If you say life needs to be "equitable" for outcome, then you have a different story you are trying to sell.

Pushing for "adult victims" doesn't sell very well to the public. However most will get behind public policy built around helping children. If the radical left held to that position, they'd simply do much better. If BLM held to that position, they wouldn't be dragged into the public right now for all their financial fraud. Adults have "choices", children do not.

Charles Barkley said it best. What you need are all these wealthy black celebrities who keep shouting racism and all this virtue signaling to just start and seed black owned businesses in mostly black communities and create jobs for black people there.  Or as Ice Cube likes to say over and over again - Dignity Comes With Dollars. Once you have lots of successful black owned businesses that help other black people and set a foothold with a black business owned coalition in a major city, then they have an effective political voice. Replicate that across America and now you have a national voting block that must be addressed. Political power to shift actual public policy doesn't stem from racial extortion, victim methodology, virtue signaling and being perceived as wildly arrogant by force feeding one groups problems over everyone else's in the entire country.

If you want favorable public policy, no one gives you that for nothing. Your group has to weaponize it's current advantages and create leverage to take it.

Life isn't fair. If Black America doesn't like that, then they have a choice to either sit down and cry or to get up and fight. But their leadership base has chosen NEITHER. What was chosen was to sit down, cry in the loudest way possible and pretend to fight so a few race grifters could buy some mansions for themselves. You can't blame the rest of America for that level of failure.

I'm going to be fair. What's happening to Black America is very complex. It is tragic. It is not fair. But the only ones who can save Black America right now is Black America itself. Until they come to terms with that reality, they will always be treated like anyone else in life who has absolutely no leverage at all.
It's interesting that you immediately made this about "Black America".

 
then we also need rich white people to infuse money into poor white American's to create white jobs in white communities

fair is fair, right ?


There are several issues at play here when one compares poor white rural Christian America with Black America

1) Poor white rural Christian America started voting in unprecedented numbers in 2016 and 2020. The Democratic Party had decades upon decades upon decades to court this vote. They didn't because it had massive diminishing returns on the investment. And to be fair, the calculations made sense at the time. This group just didn't come out and vote enough and in the numbers needed to be a feared political block that couldn't be denied. Since they couldn't be controlled, they were denounced, which is why the radical left pushed the activist complicit MSM to keep pushing the White Nationalism narrative.

2) Black America has a heavy presence in mass entertainment and sports, which assigns them a "novelty factor" to over educated "Limousine Liberals"  Does anyone think LL contingent actually cares about the true plight of Black America? It's mostly a public virtue signal to assign self purity at the Altar of Wokeness. Useful "Woke Shock Troopers" is just a few steps away from "Disposable Political Cannon Fodder"  Beyonce is invited to sing at their wealthy elite parties, but never asked to sit down in the back room tables when the country and it's wealth are being carved up.

Poor white rural Christian America needs to save itself too. The major voting block isn't enough, as I stated before, you need to have financial leverage at the local political level ( via masses of local businesses that community pillars), that influences municipal decisions, school boards, local policy, etc, etc. You amass enough of those and you can take State Legislatures which allows you to shape state public policy and laws. This makes you powerful in that if you take enough large areas of a state, you become a critical factor in either taking or holding that state's natural electoral votes. Now you have nation wide leverage.

Black America should be spending their money with businesses that are owned and operated by other local black Americans. Keep that money in house and in their communities. Poor white rural Christian America should do the same.

YOU CANNOT SHORTCUT THE DYNAMICS OF ACTUAL POLITICAL LEVERAGE.

Screaming at the public about racism and putting logos on the field at major sporting events will not cut it. This is where much of the political advocacy of Black America fails.

 
IMO what I think goes on is what was put pretty well in a recent set of pods from the Freakanomics guys - as a culture, we are very individualistic so we overemphasize our role and undercut what goes on around us as influencing factors.   It's basically built into our collective way of thinking.   As noted in many threads, I don't quite think us that way and I think it's more of blend of choices and external factors.   I am sure there are more that think it's more external factors than I do even..  

 
IMO what I think goes on is what was put pretty well in a recent set of pods from the Freakanomics guys - as a culture, we are very individualistic so we overemphasize our role and undercut what goes on around us as influencing factors.   It's basically built into our collective way of thinking.   As noted in many threads, I don't quite think us that way and I think it's more of blend of choices and external factors.   I am sure there are more that think it's more external factors than I do even..  


🖐️ It’s almost all external factors.

 
🖐️ It’s almost all external factors.
I guess I don't really have a number or % on it, but I just know in other threads where people talk about college or how they did all this stuff themselves, I start thinking to myself "well, what about your parent's choices, what about the luck of the draw maybe getting a good teacher at the right time, etc, etc.. ".   That's just one example, but you get my drift.   

 
I would like to add one to the OP: many people argue that illegal immigrants chose to “skip the line” and come here illegally. For most illegal immigrants there is no line,  no way to come here legally. So this is a false narrative. 

 
I really like what the OP wrote and would like to add my 2 cents. I hate the lazy excuse that because I can do it or did it everyone can.

Everyone struggles with certain things and excel at other things. Just because eating healthy or not gambling is easy for you doesn't make it easy for everyone. We are all wired differently. 

For example. I struggle sleeping. I have tried everything you can think of. I have seen many doctors for this problem over many years without any success.

We shouldn't label or belittle anyone with any issues unless we actually know what is going on with them and most of the time when these conclusions are reached we don't have any idea. 

 
I would like to add one to the OP: many people argue that illegal immigrants chose to “skip the line” and come here illegally. For most illegal immigrants there is no line,  no way to come here legally. So this is a false narrative. 


I disagree:

1)  For most people it's possible to come here legally.  It's not guaranteed but they can certainly submit the paperwork.  We simply can't take everyone who wants to come here.  Which leads me to #2.

2) It's not a right for someone to come here.  I can't go squat at Brad Pitt's house.  Because it's his house.  And this is OUR country. 

For the reasons above I find this argument uncompelling.  If an illegal comes here it's because they CHOSE to.

 
🖐️ It’s almost all external factors.
I happened to be born with 23 pairs of chromosomes instead of 24.  If the genetic dice roll had gone differently, I might have had a wildly different life.

Is that an "external factor" in your view?  I get the impression that it is, given some conversations that we had before, but I might be misremembering.

 
I happened to be born with 23 pairs of chromosomes instead of 24.  If the genetic dice roll had gone differently, I might have had a wildly different life.

Is that an "external factor" in your view?  I get the impression that it is, given some conversations that we had before, but I might be misremembering.
Yes.  Pretty much everything is external except like hard work and sacrifice and stuff like that.

 
This is great on the extremes.  Most of America isn't living in the extremes.

People truly in poverty maybe can't afford fresh fruits in vegetables (13%).  Middle Class America can.  Many of them buy them.  Many of them buy KFC and McDonalds frequently.  And I get that 13% is a pretty decent chunk of the population--it suggests that 87% of people do have food choices.  

You can absolutely own a cell phone and not make your life an open book.  You don't have to download Facebook/Twitter/Etc.  You can now actually decline to share info with apps.  

Lots of jobs still don't require a degree.  We don't put nearly enough emphasis on trade schools.  The idea that college is the barrier to a job is more harmful than anything involving higher education.  Kids have long been taught "College is just what you do after high school."  And many of them are 18 year old kids with no clue what they want to do and no business making decisions that cost them tens of thousands of dollars.  But we go ahead and let them make those decisions.  


The bolded paragraph is wrong. 87 percent would have food choices if you only use the data you present.

How many of those middle class people are single parents that don't have time to go shopping and prepare a meal, but do have time to run through a drive thru? How many are working 2 or 3 jobs to be middle class? How many don't have options in their area. Having good grocery store that sells healthy food was a major problem in Detroit for many years. 

 
The bolded paragraph is wrong. 87 percent would have food choices if you only use the data you present.

How many of those middle class people are single parents that don't have time to go shopping and prepare a meal, but do have time to run through a drive thru? How many are working 2 or 3 jobs to be middle class? How many don't have options in their area. Having good grocery store that sells healthy food was a major problem in Detroit for many years. 
I'm sure there are people who truly don't have time to make a meal.  I don't believe this is the majority of Americans.

There are also a lot of people who do, and would rather run through the drive through for convenience.  I'm not bashing them, but that is indeed a choice.  

 
I'm sure there are people who truly don't have time to make a meal.  I don't believe this is the majority of Americans.

There are also a lot of people who do, and would rather run through the drive through for convenience.  I'm not bashing them, but that is indeed a choice.  


I only listed a few other points. There are many more. I would bet that the majority of Americans have trouble getting a healthy meal because of something and it isn't just being fat or lazy. Although I am sure some fall into that category as well. 

 
I really like what the OP wrote and would like to add my 2 cents. I hate the lazy excuse that because I can do it or did it everyone can.

Everyone struggles with certain things and excel at other things. Just because eating healthy or not gambling is easy for you doesn't make it easy for everyone. We are all wired differently. 

For example. I struggle sleeping. I have tried everything you can think of. I have seen many doctors for this problem over many years without any success.

We shouldn't label or belittle anyone with any issues unless we actually know what is going on with them and most of the time when these conclusions are reached we don't have any idea. 
Preach on.  This one grinds my gears a bit as well.  

 
I only listed a few other points. There are many more. I would bet that the majority of Americans have trouble getting a healthy meal because of something and it isn't just being fat or lazy. Although I am sure some fall into that category as well. 
I think we're arguing towards almost 2 different points.

I'm not arguing people only have trouble getting a healthy meal because they're fat and lazy.  My point wasn't "people only eat bad because they're fat or lazy."

My point is that people have the ability to make those food choices.  Maybe you're tired after work and don't want to cook.  Ok, I get it.  But that's a choice.  That doesn't make you fat or lazy.  But...it's a choice.  

Are there some people who really don't have a choice for various factors?  Absolutely.  Is it a majority of Americans?  I don't believe so.  

And I'm not bashing those people.  I'm not belittling those people.  I myself sometimes go home from work, and I don't want to cook.  My wife doesn't want to cook.  So we eat out or get fast food or pizza delivery.  But that's still a choice.  

I guess I'm not trying to call anyone fat or lazy, I'm just trying to challenge the notion that a majority of people don't have a choice in much of their lives.  I think there are some people that's true of.  But I think the narrative being pushed is that the majority of people have no choices, when in reality they do.

 
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Everyone struggles with certain things and excel at other things. Just because eating healthy or not gambling is easy for you doesn't make it easy for everyone. We are all wired differently. 
So are you saying that society should adjust and make accommodations for people with gambling problems and gluttony issues? 

 
And I'm not bashing those people.  I'm not belittling those people.  I myself sometimes go home from work, and I don't want to cook.  My wife doesn't want to cook.  So we eat out or get fast food or pizza delivery.  But that's still a choice.  
How could it possibly be a choice when pizza hut has commercials? You are almost helpless to the advertising that attacks you. If you have the sheer determination to get beyond the advertising there is no way you can get past the sugar they put in pizza sauce these days. Sugar is basically cocaine. And the solution to this addiction is obviously taxing rich people.

 

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