Monday, October 29, 2012

Violence causes poverty

 Yes. An inversion of the hackneyed NZ mantra.

"Violence is a serious cause of poverty" is a headline about  Guatemala, (or any developing world country for that matter). In the first world we generally hear, "...poverty is a cause of violence".

But thinking about it a moment, first,  second, third whatever-world status, violence will cause poverty.

In our world, violence will break relationships incurring the costs of supporting two households, family court proceedings, being on welfare or reimbursing the state for benefits.

If resulting in a criminal conviction, violence will  reduce chances of good or any employment, and travel (for employment). It may incur a fine which grows as repayments are not met.

Violence will alienate people who might otherwise be sources of support, including children in the perpetrator's old age.

It may result in a prison sentence which impedes future earning  prospects significantly. It may draw people into a circle of might-is-right and might-is-money - not easily held onto with no recourse to legal protections.

In fact any action or behaviour detrimental to harmonious, co-operative human relations is ultimately going to make people generally poorer.

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