Monday, November 8, 2010

since we're on the topic of health care reform.....

There are times when I look at the bigger picture of the society I'm surrounded with, and I get frustrated. There are yet other times, where I look at the little pieces of society, and I get enraged. In both cases I may feel guilty about things that I can't really ultimately solve on my own. Then I tend to feel guilty that my guilt alone isn't helping the cause, but it's wasting energy and distracting me from things that I actually can control.

I imagine this is much like the guilt that Catholics feel in terms of their religious applications to godly things and daily life... then again, I don't actually know any Catholics who let their guilt stop them from doing anything.. (as the design of this religious institution might suggest...)

Isn't that what Hail Mary's are for?

I digress... health care reform... right.

I don't love bandaids. I wash my hands about a million times a day, and there's nothing more unpleasant on your finger than a dampened bandaid that really just needs to be thrown away and replaced to actually continue functioning as it's intended.

However, there is definitely some practicality in their invention. They keep dirt out and prevent infection. Even for someone who washes their hands as often as I do. They also protect cuts from actual contact to things that could just aggravate an open cut. And now that winter is coming as well as dry skin season, in the northeast, I would bet that folks increase their bandaid inventories at times like this.

The bandaid industry, however, infuriates me. I've long since abandoned the idea of buying 'flesh' colored bandaids. I use them in the office, sure, or first aid kits, when necessary, but as far as buying them, I do not.

For a few reasons. First, I think it's ridiculously ironic, when a young professionally looking 30something year old female, 9-5er, is wearing a fluorescent bandaid and/or a bandaid with a print of some cartoon character. Most likely for a cartoon I've never seen, like Dora, or Spongebob. (I have yet to find teenage mutant ninja turtle, or GI-joe bandaids) Perhaps this allows me some 'freedoms' in the corporate world where I cannot easily display my tattoos. Oh, sense of individuality, and self, sometimes you get the best of me. (Note: Tattoos are acceptable in my office, it's just generally too cold to actually wear clothes that would expose them... brrrr A/C)

Secondly, and I think more importantly....the 'flesh' bandaids do not actually represent my flesh. Well, they come closer to mine than some. However, I think it's kind of ridiculous that the bandaid industry is then, inadvertently, choosing what the acceptable color of human flesh should be. Doesn't this bother anyone else?

I understand that they do make a few other choices as far as flesh colors in plastic first aid applications go. However, as I stood in the bandaid aisle, yet again a couple of weeks ago, I am still dumbfounded by the fact that the 'middle-of-the-road-average-caucasion' is really the true 'color' of humanity. Some may argue that it's based on population statistics, minorities, and other factors that determine this. Yet, I've not once seen a census taken for skin color as a shade, for the purpose of clearly determining bandaid colors to market to the public.

Furthermore, I think the shade that is actually the most abundant is not really a shade that makes sense anyway. If you put the same color bandaid on the finger of 100 people, it's likely to stand out on every single one of their fingers for not even being a close match. 1 out of 100 might be closer than most, but that's my guess as to the statistics that are technically represented.

Who made the choice that a bandaid should be 'flesh' colored? Why would this make sense? They make clear ones already, do they not?

If you can't tell, I feel a little bitter about this subject, and have probably since my grade school years, discussing race with my grandmother. She used to use the term 'colored' often, and when starting to break down my own thoughts and opinions on things, I then asked her if that meant that we were 'discolored'. This, she had no answer to, and seemed to start consciously attempting to use other terms, that seemed more appropriate.

I have a really hard time when I see things like this. Maybe it's because I feel like there are fragments of history that seem to be leftovers, remaining unaddressed, proving, as far as we've come. We've still got a really long way to go.

It just seems like a kick in the face to the equality of the heart, spirit, soul and mind that seems to often be encouraged in people these days. If your skin color is not of the
'middle-of-the-road-average-caucasion' variety, you walk down the bandaid aisle... and the products look up at you and scream.

Yes, you are different. How does this aid in emotional self progress of understanding that we're all related as humans on a wonderful level? That your emotions, and human identity should ultimately, supersede the bandaid aisle?

This, I don't know.

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