Image result for picket line

“Have you ever thought of crossing?”

Signs, chants, and anger fill the air as men and women stand outside and march to the unfair treatment of their organizations. Either unfair, or upset at layoffs from their company of employment. Now, my question is, do you feel the person or people who decide to cross the picket line, are traitors? Are these people selfish because they choose to come to work and not stand out in the cold with you? For me, I think it depends on the situation of the person or people not willing to cross the picket line. You don’t know why they are choosing not to cross the line. It could be for reasons outside of being selfish.

The number one reason for crossing the line is because you people who have to generate an income. And for that reason alone you can’t truly be too upset at the person who cross. In this society, anyone who can make an income for themselves is a blessing. So if you work for an organization where jobs are being cut, and you make the cut, it’s best to just keep working. Because it all boils down to if they would leave their jobs for you. So every man for himself and God for us all type of thought process. That doesn’t mean you don’t care if someone can eat at night. It just means you have to worry about your immediate situation first.

Well, what about the people who cross because they genuinely don’t care. There are those people who are out in society that are the cut throat types that could care less. They look at life like, I got it, you don’t, and too bad if you starve. Not only too bad, but I’m going to take more than I need. This form of greed is the reason why initially, so many people decide to protest . There is usually an issue with management at an executive level that causes people to picket. The ones at the top take so much for themselves yet say we need to make cutbacks. But if they’re making cutbacks, then how come executives are getting their bonuses.

See, for me living in New York City, you see a lot of protest. Whether the people are protesting some politician/s or some multinational corporation. They either protest as a small group of ten to twenty people (small businesses) or even in the hundreds of thousands (Occupy Wall Street). I fall somewhere in the middle as it pertains to picketing. Meaning it’s hard to care when you’re so busy trying to keep a roof over your own head. Yet at the same time, you have to cultivate a skill for yourself in society. A skill that if you do lose your job you can move on to a different one. But we as people get comfortable with daily life. We go to sleep and wake up assuming there is going to be something there for us. And when that something is stripped away we panic. You just have to keep pushing, even on a job, and never get complacent. Otherwise the changes in America will always leave you destitute and helpless.

The Rio Most Will Never See

“What they won’t show.”

As the Olympics games are in full swing in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, there is something most people  don’t know or won’t ever see; favelas. For those of you who are uneducated in what this word means let me explain to you what it is. The favelas is the name of the slums where the poorest of people in Brazil dwell. When the games opened just over a week ago, there was a sight that people living in the slums witnessed that was a lot different than the spectators in the crowd or us at home.

The photo to the right shows the view of how most Brazilians saw the opening ceremonies. If you notice, the young people are observing the fireworks from slums. Their clothes are caked with grim and graffiti are sprayed on concrete blocks. From this view, the Olympic games seems like a world away. As a citizen of the United States, I have a better view of the Rio Games from my flat screen television than citizens in Brazil.

So that leaves the question, who is to blame? Why, in a country where such poverty and crime exist would a nation spend hundreds of millions of dollars just to prepare for sporting events. Events which will only last a little less than a month with athletes who most likely are never stepping foot in Rio again. Well, it’s not about the athletes, or the games, or even the citizens. It’s about the money generated.

The Rio Olympics are expecting to generate billions of dollars through a variety of corporate sponsorships and multinational television network deals. What you don’t see is the negative impact it has on its citizens. Well what do I mean by negative impact, I mean the money spent to keep the various facilities going after the games. It is estimated that millions of dollars will be spent just for maintenance alone on facilities once the games are over.

Now I ask the question, who built these facilities? Were the citizens in Rio offered an opportunity to work and build these facilities. This way income is generated for poor families who will then in turn contribute to their nation’s economy. My guess is very little if any opportunity was allotted to families living in areas like the favelas. Private contractors and private investment pumped money into these games and even dubbed the games, “The Green Games for a Blue Planet.” How dare they, how dare they promote green initiatives. All the while you walk a few miles up into the hills where children frolic in raw sewage. Drug cartels and municipal police face off in the streets and protestors take over the streets.

As for the athletes with a platform, why don’t more of them step up. Is it that they are aware and don’t want to lose their corporate dollars. Or is it because they don’t know at all. Whatever the case may be, we will have to add Rio to the list of many countries vying for an Olympics in 2024 and beyond consisting of poor citizens that will never benefit from the Olympic games. Nations where they come up with money for Olympic games, but not enough to feed and employ its own citizens.