The Fun of Condemning Others
I have noticed that when people engage in behavior that’s not socially acceptable, they readily point out others who are, in their opinion, “worse.” They concede that their actions are not ok, but their behavior is not as bad as it could be. In truth, the very thing they say they do not do, is actually a description of their actions. For example:
- People who shoplift, or “boost” say, ” I don’t steal from people. Only stores.
- People who sell drugs that they have dabbled with (true dealers do not use the product) mention that they are not hypocrites who sell people what they won’t do themselves. “I only sell what I do. I don’t give anyone anything I wouldn’t do myself.”
- People engaged in prostitution say, “I never go after anyone’s man. The only guys I date are guys I don’t know. These are tricks not boyfriends.”
- Married women engaged in prostitution say they are not committing adultery BC they have sex for money not for love or pleasure. Business deals do not count as cheating.
- Women who use men for money by wheedling, manipulating or otherwise conning guys would never make an upfront deal to exchange sex fir drugs. They say, “it’s not like I prostituted. I have friends who give me money to help me out. I have a lot of friends.”
- People I have known who’ve sold street drugs usually focus on selling one type of drug. A person who sold ice seldom sold crack also. It was quite common for dealers to look down on people who sell other drugs that they deem as mire destructive. Dealers also look down at their customers. To dealers, society’s problem was the drug addict. If you ever want to insult a dealer, ask him if he is an addict. Not him, no way.
- If you think addicts, society’s outcasts, don’t have anyone to put down you’d be wrong. Those who inject drugs scoff at those who smoke them: “that’s nothing nothing but a waste” bc the effects, though quicker, are weaker and do not not last as long. People who smoke drugs regard using needles as the ultimate low. The main drugs of choice in Honolulu, crack cocaine, crystal methamphetamine, or ice, and heroin or “boy,” can all be smoked and/or injected. Theoretically people have the option of mixing up the way they do their drugs but they never do.
You get the idea. It is difficult for people to disregard society’s rules. People need to tell themselves they are not so bad, in fact, they are misunderstood. Certainly the person who gets caught boosting is bothered by the thief label BC they do not steal from friends. What makes a person a thief is nit who they take from but that they take things at all. If what you do is unacceptable, you can change what you do or change what you think of what you do. If you have to lie to yourself to get through the day, you’ll do it. That’s why recovery demands rigorous honesty BC to live with yourself as an addict means first and foremost lying to yourself.
The next time you compare yourself to someone else, and wonder how that person could sink is low, ask yourself if you have more in common with the object of your scorn than you’ve been willing to admit. The harsh truth might surprise you if you are willing to be honest with yourself.