Human worth is a social construct

This is an essay in political philosophy and political psychology; it is realistic in that it has no sentimentalism about people; peoples lives are not respected by nature and by some human beings; therefore, you must be circumspect in how you treat people for they may decide to end your life and no God would prevent them from doing so; you too can do to people as you want to do to them; the law can intervene after the deed but not before the deed. We are all vulnerable to each other’s plans. This does not call for paranoia but for political realism in dealing with people. I authored this essay upon seeing Nigerians degrading each other, realizing that those they degrade may end their childish and unproductive lives at any time they choose to do so.

HUMAN WORTH IS A SOCIAL CONSTRUCT

Ozodi Osuji

      Look at yourself. Your body is the same as other animals’ bodies. Like animals you live for a certain amount of time, say, 120 years, and die.

     Your body is composed of sixty-four elements (carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, potassium, calcium, phosphor, sulfur, iron, magnesium etc.), upon your death those decompose; they, in turn, decompose to the electrons, protons and neutrons that compose them and those eventually decay to (quarks )and  to light that formed them during the Big Bang that got this universe going, 13.8 billion years ago.

    As an animal and a composition of nature, nature does not respect you or see you as special. At any point in time nature (via bacteria, virus, fungi) is trying to destroy your body and you are fighting it via your immune system. Nature, via natural disasters, such as earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, hurricanes, floods, tornadoes destroy the human body as they destroy animals and plants.

     Other human beings, if they want to, can point guns at your head and pull the trigger and you are dead (no God will stop them; other people may stop them if they are trained to have conscience).

    All said there is no worth for the human body in nature.

INDIVIDUAL AND SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF HUMAN WORTH

    However, individual human beings do give themselves sense of worth. What it means to be a human being is to believe that one has worth despite nature’s disregard for ones worth. Each person, if healthy, tends to believe that he has worth. He may use his group’s religion to convince his self that he has worth.

     The individual’s belief that he has worth is pretended for it is not based on reality; you can see yourself as the most important man on earth and a human being points a gun at you and kills you. Where is your worth if any person can kill you and nature can do that at will? Human beings do not have natural worth.

     However, people can have social worth if in their community they manage to convince each other that they have worth. That is what society is all about, those who respect each other’s worth, not because it is natural but because they choose to do so. Worth is a social construct.

      The same community may choose to see those who are not in their group as worthless. In North America white folks agree to repose worth on each other and protect each other’s lives. On the other hand, they see black folks as not part of their community and do not repose worth on black folks.

     Seeing black folks as lacking worth and respect, they feel free to enslave them, discriminate against them and or kill black folks and do so without feeling guilt.

     That is correct, to kill an African in the USA is like killing a mosquito. Oh, they may go through the charade of court trials when a black person is killed but they know deep down in their hearts that they did nothing wrong in killing a black person. This is because they do not see a black person as part of their community.

    And before you go sentimental on us,   do remember that Africans do the same in Africa. Members of each African tribe may give themselves socially constructed worth, but they do not always extend it to other people.

     As we speak, in Nigeria Fulani’s, who came from Guinea and seized power in Northern Nigeria, are killing Nigerians and do not feel guilt from doing so. Before our eyes, these folks have gone wild and withdrawn regard for Nigerians and kill them like flies (eventually, Nigerians will cooperate and kill them and or chase them out of the country, as recently happened to them in the Central African Republic).

     For our present purposes, Africans have disregard for each other that killing each other is fun for them.

SPIRITUALITY GIVES PEOPLE WORTH

      In my perception, people as animals have no natural worth. However, I know that life goes beyond perception. There is what I call a spiritual part of people. At the spiritual level we have perfect worth. But that spiritual worth would not protect any of us from harming other people. This is because to spirit the phenomenal universe is a dream that those who are unified in spirit are now separated into individuated selves, egos, living in bodies.

      To spirit people in bodies are dream figures and do not exist and only exist because they want to dream that they live in bodies.

     Spirit allows them to dream that they are separated egos in bodies but does not protect them and they can, if they choose to, wipe each other out.

     People go to war and kill millions of other persons and no God intervenes to stop them. Adolf Hitler decided to return to savage level and by the time he was done he had killed over fifty million persons. God did not stop him.

    He was only stopped by the Mighty military of the Russians (Churchill and Roosevelt took their time waiting for Hitler to eradicate communism in the USSR for them…it is Russians that defeated Nazism, not the West).

     The point here is that human beings as individuals or as groups can kill each other and it does not matter to nature or to God, for to those two they are mere mirages and not real. By the end of this century nuclear weapons will be available to most nations.

      Muslims were told by the Koran to use force to convert non- Muslims to their religion and to kill those who resist. Thus, one can see them using their nuclear weapons to attack the West and in return the West eradicates them from existence.

     Billions of people are going to be killed, and to nature it does not matter for nature does not give people worth.

     Human worth is merely a social construct and when people choose to withdraw that worth from each other they kill each other and not feel bad from doing so.

CONCLUSION

      Nigerians, indeed, Africans have a penchant for always insulting each other; they consciously set out to publicly shame each other and believe that it is an accomplishment to do so. Because of these childish aspects of them they kill each other like they are flies. Those you degrade, given that they, like you, were struggling to seem to have worth will resent you if you deny their worth; killing you is the least that they can do to you; remember that God and nature will not come to your rescue when they kill you.

     The next time you decide to disrespect another human being remember that he could go pick up a gun and kill you. You have no worth and he has no worth; both of you can eradicate each other and neither God nor nature cares.

      People live in society because they agreed to give each other imaginary worth and respect each other. Remember that fact as you fancy yourself as powerful; your power is only six minutes away from any person who wants to destroy you from doing so; and only a second away from nature if nature decides to eliminate you.

      Stop your dream of individual or group specialness; give up your delusion that you have existential worth for you do not.

     We have worth in the nonphysical realm, in God but that would not prevent earthlings from treating you as worthless; if in doubt go ask black Americans how they are treated by their compatriots.

Ozodi Osuji

November 9, 2021

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