The Ecology of Violence

The “Ecology of Violence” is a concept or idea or perhaps even a social theory that popped into my head recently as the writing process which I began several years ago reached its current stage. How the “ecology of violence” differs from the “ecology of terror” which was coined and developed by former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani – who coincidentally and ironically was someone I worked for indirectly while I was an assistant to the Afghan ambassador to the United States but for a very short period of time – is perhaps more a matter of scale and scope rather than anything else. Arguably, the “ecology of terror” is an offshoot or a byproduct of an even broader and larger social phenomenon or social theory, namely, the “ecology of violence.” In turn, the “ecology of violence” is one of the “catastrophic outcomes” of the prevailing ‘global order’ that has been touched upon on numerous occasions.

For instance, the fact that the number of instances of gun violence and mass shootings in America far exceeds the number in virtually all other countries can be inferred from this “ecology of violence” which must be nurtured and fostered by certain elements of American society in order to sustain itself. Statistics show that the United States has twenty-three times the rate of firearm homicide than Australia. Statistics also show that the gun homicide rate in America was more than double the average of all other countries, and that the number of firearm suicides in America made up about one-third of all firearm suicides in the world even though America had only about 4 percent of the world’s population. In turn, putting ordinary Ukrainians and Afghan translators in a pickle and leaving them for dead, provoking China, and stereotyping minorities and people of color in addition to all the facts that have just been mentioned are all bits and pieces of reality which are interconnected and intertwined with an “ecology of violence” fostered by certain elements of American society.

Thus, the question which emerges is, why would certain elements of American society deliberately foster such a global environment or “ecology of violence” on a global scale and then foster a nouveau riche class which stomps on regular people so that they can climb the corporate ladder and enable such an environment or ecosystem to be fostered? The answer, perhaps, is to have a sex dungeon. One can argue that the famous “Fifty Shades of Grey” is more of a cultural monument and symbol rather than being just a piece of literature or writing. It follows that both media and society glorify and give voice to all the wrong people and in turn insult the intelligence of regular people, even though people are no longer falling for it because of globalization and technology. 

The 20th century American historian and scholar Charles Beard was essentially the pioneer of American ‘revisionism’ in the sense that Beard was one of the first intellectuals and scholars in America to revise the meta-narrative of world history which the American mainstream sought to propagate as America transitioned out of a policy of “isolationism” and towards a policy of “empire” or “imperialism” and “global hegemony.” As Beard argued, very narrow and specific economic interests shaping the entirety of government and society is the most basic fact of life in America. In essence, the revisionist approach of Beard and his intellectual posterity towards the meta-narrative of the American mainstream is the revision of the meta-narrative of world history belonging to one class of people by an entirely different class of people. Beard argued that contrary to conventional thought, political ‘democracy’ and universal suffrage in the Western world but especially in the United States made class disparities between people even worse than they were before the advent of such political and social contrivances. And with broader class disparities come broader political and social implications which perhaps have yet to fully manifest themselves. 

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