If I Can’t See It, It’s Not There…

by Joe

The closing of the Second Chance Recovery Methadone Clinic has caused considerable controversy these past few days. After being forced to move three times in the past six years, the clinic has finally been forced to close its doors forever due to hostile opposition from community leaders. I, for one, can certainly see where these supremely rational community leaders are coming from. I mean, it’s obvious that Methadone clinics represent a problem in our society. They’re a reminder that some people are worse off than we are. It’s not fun to be reminded that there are serious problems in our society; our lives are so much better when we don’t know what’s out there. Removing these kinds of clinics from our communities will completely erase the issue from our world, subsequently unburdening us from having to actually think about it.

This “not in my backyard” and/or “if I can’t see it, it’s not a problem” mentality is a major reason why serious social issues, like drug addiction and sexual violence, continue to exist in silence. In the case of drug addictions, we have individuals speaking out about how something needs to be done about the drug problem in our city. Yet whenever some solution is proposed, like a methadone clinic (which is a safe, controlled way of beating certain addictions), certain groups do everything they can to see them shut down. Some of the beautifully rational arguments hold that a methadone clinic would bring addicts into their community. It’s obviously not possible that there are people in the community who are addicted to certain substances. This mentality is no different when it comes to the issue of sexual violence.

People are more than happy to agree that sexual violence can happen anywhere, but also believe that it is something that doesn’t happen in their own communities. The manifestation of this mentality can be seen in the ridiculous victim blaming that goes on. As long as young girls watch their drink, don’t wear provocative clothing, and aren’t “outgoing” then sexual violence goes away. But if these girls have the audacity to actually do what they want (after all, allowing such behavior would destroy our 1950s utopia, wait minute…what year is it?), then sexual violence ends up being a poignant lesson: step out of line and you’ll be sexually assaulted. Three cheers for “civilized” society.

It’s far too complicated to hold the offender accountable for their actions because that would require actual thought; discovering why one person would do such a horrible thing to another. Actual analysis of the offender might lead us to a discovery that there is something wrong with society in general and how we are socialized. Can’t have that. After all, if we ignore the problem it will go away and, eventually, cease to exist.

How silly it is to have social organizations fighting these serious social problems. The NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) people have the right idea; protest any organization working to solve social issues and the issue goes away. How simple. Think this would work for Focus on the Family? Both Canadian and American versions? I mean we could “solve” homosexuality, abortion, and atheism in one fell swoop.

We could take this a step further and walk around with our eyes closed all of the time, thereby solving all of the worlds problems. Wouldn’t even have to worry about being hit by traffic; after all if we can’t see it, it’s not there.

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