Have you seen the The First Purge and the three movies that came out before it? As action movies they’re okay and entertaining, but as symbolism for inequality in America they’re great sources for learning.
The whole concept about The Purge movies is that American society is too violent and so to combat this, these fantasy politicians come up with the “brilliant” idea of having an annual Holly-night where all crimes are legal, including murder, for a full 12 hours. Some may think the movies deep inner meaning is about violence in human nature, but they really shed light on the effects of inequality in society.
An undertone of the movie is that “poor people are a burden to society,” even though many of the characters in the movies openly argue against this. Now before I get into if that statement is really true, let me talk about why poor people suffer more on this Holly-night of violence.
Monetary funds, of course, allow protection. We can look back at ancient times to see this. The rich could afford proper battlements on their homes and walls of stone but the poor at best would get a house of timber. Now which of these two structure you think would stand out longer during a siege? The answer is rather obvious–the rich home!
Likewise in modern society, especially for the people who don’t even have a home in the first place, the poor are more vulnerable to victimization in the event of a “purge.” This shows the effects of inequality blatantly. The rich get to go out with armored cars and machine guns purging as they please, but the poor, with knives and baseballs bats, must hide in order not to get shot. One of the movies even shows extremely rich people paying sick and dying people $100,000 to come to their house on purge night so the rich people can purge in the safety of their mansions without going out in the streets. And of course the dying person gives the money to their offspring.
Of course none of this shows how inequality even came to be in society, but it does show the effects of it very well. It also shows a common theme in reality where those who are in a situation to help others with their riches would rather lock up and continue to help themselves. Even in the case where they pay to kill a already-dying person on purge night, the trade still includes taking the life of a poor person, which is nothing close to a donation (not forgetting that some rich people do donate a lot, of course).
Now, do poor people really burden society?
To answer this question I want to mention a reason why ultra-rich people actually burden society WAY more than poor people possibly could. Forgetting that the majority of poor people actually work all the small necessary jobs needed to make society function, let’s talk about how every single major catastrophe is caused by the ultra-rich. Don’t believe me? Well, here’s a list of catastrophes caused by the rich around the world:
- Oil spills
- Cancerous toxins in food
- Nuclear malfunctions
- Drug trafficking
Although it could be argued that war brings new innovations to society like space exploration and air-travel, wouldn’t you much rather live in a world without war anyways? I think if millions of people were NOT killed yearly in wars society would’ve been able to double it’s advancements by now, especially if we start this scale at the beginning of mankind…
And, sure, there are a lot of poor squatters who purposely make a life out of begging off people. Some of them are even murderers and thieves. But, with all that said, none of them could even come close to being as evil and menacing to society as the CEOs of tobacco companies or the generals of war who urge these people to “die for their country.”
Now before I go off topic even more, I want to invite you to watch the The Purge movies with an eye open for studying the effects of inequality. They allow a valuable insight into the true horrors of mankind. I think you’ll be surprised by what you see.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned to equalityms.org for more powerful content.
Bye for now!