So these would be concentration camps.

Keep telling me it's not Nazism.

This is what you can expect to see, when a society has determined that human beings owe nothing to one another, and that life must be earned, and that money is virtue, and that violence redeems.
You don’t need a population to desire genocide and slavery in order to enact them. You just need to convince them to accept a series of propositions that will lead them there, that make such an end first possible, then likely, and finally inevitable, even normal.
I suspect no society that has ever committed genocide or enacted slavery has ever let themselves see themselves for what they were.
Example: most 'white' U.S. citizens, if asked, probably don’t think the U.S. is responsible for multiple genocides. We might if pressed admit they occurred, and even that they were very sad, perhaps even bad. But most of us reject the notion that the U.S. is responsible.
But we are. The United States is responsible for multiple genocides.

We’ve forgiven ourselves.
It was a long time ago. That's what we say. It has no effect today.

Yet we still revere our founding 'fathers.' We put them on our currency. We resist any attempt to deconstruct the mythologies we've built around them. We propose to follow their every intention to the letter.
Most of them owned slaves, built extraordinary wealth from their labor. All participated in some way in our genocide of the native tribes who lived in this land for millennia before our country's founding. We live on that land. That wealth shaped the country in which we live.
So somehow many of us insist the past has no bearing on the present, except when we think it should have every bearing on the present.

We only inherit wealth in this country, not responsibility.
Nor do individuals think of themselves as evil any more than societies do. We tend to appeal our actions from our goodness, not our badness.
That’s the horror of it. It’s never demons. It’s always just regular, good-hearted people. Generous. Charitable. Kind. Brave. Well-meaning.

But preferring an unjust order to uncomfortable justice.
Order is very good. It’s important. It’s even fundamentally necessary. But sometimes order will come into conflict with justice. And what then?
If order is prioritized over justice, or if order is mistaken for justice, you will eventually begin to hear all sorts of propositions that might otherwise seem shocking, that end, either implicitly or explicitly, with, "and that's why a lot of people will have to die."
You wouldn’t hear people express these propositions out loud in blunt terms—not at first, anyway. You’d have to watch the society for actions taken and statements made, to see what the logical assumptions behind such actions and statements must be.
If I were to want to make a society capable of genocide, first I'm going to have to work on dissolving the idea that human beings belong to each other—not ‘belong’ in the sense of property, but rather in the sense of relationship.
It's the idea we create an ecosystem from which we are fundamentally inextricable, from the local level to the global. When one is mistreated, all are. Injustice eventually hurts even seeming beneficiaries.

If I want genocide, I'm going to have to dispatch this idea right away.
I'll want to foster the notion that each of us is a self-created being, and our successes or our failures are the functions only of our own effort and choices. The suffering of another is entirely the business of that person, and nothing to do with you or me.
It may be necessary to expand the definition of ‘self,’ to include one’s family and friends, perhaps one’s neighborhood, or ethnicity. But eventually there will come some boundary, some impermeable delineation.
At some point we must build a big beautiful wall between our specific ‘self’ and other people, and make those other people pay for it. We don’t belong to each other. Each ‘self’ is an island, complete to itself.
There are questions that come naturally, when we do not belong to one another. They are “I” questions. The ‘I’ will always include certain similar people that I mean when I say “I,” and it will always, crucially, exclude the rest.
What are "I" questions?

Why should I pay for education when I don’t have children?

Why should I pay to see the hungry fed when I buy my own food?

Why should I pay to shelter the homeless when I worked hard to own my home?
Or maybe:

Why should I pay for the sick to receive care when I am healthy?

Why should I have to pay for prenatal care when I’m not a woman?

Why would I let that family from a dangerous country into my country when I am already safe?
These are the questions people ask, in a society that no longer believes that we all belong to each other.
There are few in such a society to ask: What is the price to be paid for potential ungrasped? What is the price to be paid for a nation of desperate people? What bill will come eventually due b/c of a country destabilized by warfare, a population made desperate by need?
When we don’t all belong to each other, these questions don’t need to be asked. Failure and success are hermetically sealed at the individual level. Freedom becomes a very specific and compartmentalized concept, customized to one's own particular preferences.
The only education that affects me is my own education.

The only health that affects me is my own health.

The only shelter that affects me is my own.

The only water and food that affect me are my own.

The only prosperity and the only safety that matter are my own.
Notice that once again none of these things—education, health, shelter, water, food, wealth, prosperity—is bad; in fact all are good and even necessary. It’s not a question of the things being bad. It’s the assumption, the lie, the bad priority.
So. How will we know if we’ve successfully convinced people of the lie that we don’t belong to one another?


We'd likely find many people who believed that their ability to thrive and prosper was entirely the product of their own effort and talent and ingenuity.
We’d begin to see people who equated their moral virtue with their own ability to survive.

Or equated wealth itself as interchangeable with moral virtue.

Or ascribed virtue to the wealthy simply for the fact of their wealth.
Protection of property would become more important than protection of humans in such a society.

The ability of incorporated organizations to efficiently gather wealth might afford them greater protections and considerations under the law than that offered individual people.
Public good would become the necessary enemy of private good.

Public services would become the necessary enemy of private purchases.

The idea of tax collected for public values such as education or health would begin to seem monstrous.
You might even begin to hear catch-phrases like ‘tax is theft.’

You might get a political party dedicated to only one discernible principle, that being the payment of as little tax as possible, the better to let the virtuous hold ever more of their virtue.
If this were an ironic universe, people might even believe all these propositions while worshiping within a religious tradition that taught there exists no greater danger to the soul than the love of money, no harder way to enter heaven than to make the attempt while wealthy.
If we were a society that believed we did not belong to one another, all these might be exactly the sort of thing we might see and hear.

This is the final conclusion: Other people do not matter.
And you might be willing to do anything to preserve this way of life.

Anything at all, to any number of human beings.

It would start by equating them with crime and disease.

And it would likely continue with some way of gathering them together.

We've seen it before.
I'd have answered all the people who made the standard old "you can't make this comparison until there are millions dead" argument, but they all got muted somehow. Anyway, @itsjefftiedrich summed it up pretty well.
Next, this common point.

1) It should not be amazing to us that desperate people are trying to access the place where the resources have been horded, despite danger.

2) If you think these camps, once established, are for outsiders alone, I don't know what to say to you.
And finally, this good point.

Indifference to others as a way of securing one's own security carries the seeds of its own demise.
Here is the penalty inherent in believing the lie that we don't belong to one another, that we owe one another nothing: Dissatisfaction.
A life lived not in appreciation for the good I do have, but in discontented grasping after the more I could get. A deliberate choice to live in a world, not of abundance, but of lack.
And here is the danger: Vulnerability.

When I choose to live in world in which other people do not matter, I choose to live in a world in which I, eventually, inevitably, will not matter, either.
If you liked this thread, it's a part of a much longer piece I wrote last year in response to the 2016 election.

If you have time, perhaps you will enjoy that, too.…
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