When I lived in Morocco and grew tired of all the bartering...I asked a Moroccan friend.
What is up with prices being all over the place for handmade items?
And why the incessant bartering?
He said to me.
Because things cost what they cost in Morocco and not just how much you can get for a thing or service. If an artist builds a mosaic fountain by hand and spends 10 years of his time doing it, then he gets to set the price for that item's worth in his mind. Not the going rate. That way protects the artists and the cultural traditions which we value deeply.
If you go to a doctor and need tests, X-rays, medicine, you pay what those things cost, not what doctors or companies think they can get from you because people must be able to live in a civilized society. The basic necessities that a family must have to survive must be provided for by the society. They would never let pharmaceutical companies run the governing and decision-making around essential public services, otherwise, your society never grows, it becomes sick both literally and figuratively. It eventually feeds on itself until is dies from greed.
I thought about that. I thought about the American spirit of entitlement which I did not have to deal with at all while in Morocco. But it hit me like a brick, once I arrived. This idea that you get to offer unsolicited demands (framed as advice) to people and if they ask what your credentials are, you balk and demonize the person for not listening to your "wisdom."
It happens all the time with "Christians" who assume they can tell complete strangers, they are going to hell because they don't live like they do. Or the folks who tell you, you're imagining racism because their city, family or town has none. How do they know the symptoms of racism if they've never walked in your brown skin? But they demonize you and turn you into a pariah for honoring your experiences which they have so conveniently deemed inferior to their own reality.
It permeates every fabric of American society and personal relationships. The assumption that "might makes right." If the winners won by theft, cheating and abuse, the spin is still the same: we took as much as we could while giving as little as we could and what we couldn't take, we destroyed.
I've been observing the behavior since I returned to the states. Not the obvious separatists religions and hate groups spewing rhetoric. Those witch hunters are easy to spot and easy to avoid because they live on the fringes of society in either mansions or small towns.
The more insidious behavior happens in the halls of liberalism, upper/middle class corporate, educational, artistic settings, white feminism and white saviors where the new language is one of being above racism. It's actually as deadly as burning crosses, because it is unexamined and is the prevailing modus operandi of wokeness without substance.
It creates plantations like the world of theatre or sports where POC are the performers but not the creators and arbiters of truth in storytelling and where they are always being paid less than their white counterparts who carry on secret conversations around entitlement while propping up underpaid artists of color to tell the stories the plantation owners are most comfortable with.
is a Tony-winning producer/writer/actor & CEO of TheDreamUnLocked: Boutique Coaching for Actors, Writers & Dreamers