Latinitas - A Strong Voice for Latina Youth

  Imagine a meterstick. Both ends say “extreme” and the middle says “balanced.” There is no good or bad on this spectrum, just deviations from balance. This tool can be used to measure anything, but the mean, or balance, might be perceived differently by different people, like bad sampling leading to a faulty confidence interval. Only God can see the true mean (pun intended), the true balance, and the true measure of things. That is why we are not to judge.

  But in everyday life, we need to make choices, which requires some form of judgement. Quantum mechanics says that whenever we take a measure, we no longer see the alterior places an electron can be at once. When we make a decision, with the help of our distorted meterstick, we lock in our fate with that decision, and the parallel universes of other outcomes are nowhere to be seen- by us at least. I believe God can see them all, and that is how he knows our future. He knows everything we can possibly do, but lets us tie ourselves to our self-made destiny through free will, with us not being able to see beyond a 3D world. Limitations in our meterstick.


  A lot of people see a meterstick that reads “good” on one side and “bad” on the other, but again, I like to think of it more like “extreme,” “extreme,” and “balanced.” Take for example, unity vs. diversity.


  Unity and diversity are practically antonyms, but they really on each other to exist. Unity and diversity are usually both positive things, but if you have all of one and the absence of the other, which is “extreme,” they won't be optimal. “Balance” is usually optimal.


  With unity and diversity it works like this: think of people as seeds. Each seed has potential to grow crop, but each crop is different based on genetic code. The DNA of each seed is over 90% identical in each seed. This is unity, as living things are more alike than different. However, the other less than 10% made up of differences represents diversity and individualism. We need diversity to uphold the population and it's strong unity. If the seeds were 100% identical, a virus could come and wipe them all out, leaving no survivors because nobody would have the desired and necessary trait to fight it off. Our differences make us special and celebrating them makes our unity stronger.


  We can pride ourselves in our differences, but never at the expense of belittling another. Everyone (including other species) is equal. How can we all be equal if we have differences that make some more “fit” for their environment than others? Refer back to the meterstick and think of it as a compilation of various metersticks- a sampling distribution rather than distribution of a sample if you will. Every trait makes up a sampling distribution- skill sets, qualities, values- things that describe. There are so many sampling distributions and so many events that have not been given a chance to shine yet, and so it is impossible to know all of them. Sometimes, therefore, it looks like certain people are “good at everything.” When comparing trait by trait, which you shouldn't because that's technically judging, you might notice that one person takes more to a certain”extreme” on the sampling distribution, which might make them appear more optimal than the other person being compared. But that's just based on the select traits you see. The other person has potential, and less extremism, in other sampling distributions you haven't thought of. We humans are just biased and limited in our view. It may be for our own good. Our brain might filter stuff out in order not to get sensory overload- but that's another theory itself.

  When combined, all of our traits make a sampling distribution of our identity. When a populations' individual identity samples are compiled into a large sample, if and only if we are true to ourselves, celebrating diversity, the populations’ meterstick will appear “balanced.” But we tend to go to extremes- at least in my view. That is why I think diversity is necessary for unity.


  Diversity and unity can have different applications. One is biodiversity. Maintaining a diversity of genes, whether considered by people as worthy or not, is important to assure the union of a species and the species’ union with other species, and the environment. Think about the seeds again. I'm going to now introduce a controversial subject- GMO plants. I feel that GMOs are bit negative themselves. In fact, they are an opportunity for diversity in the gene pool. If wild populations were to get “contaminated” by their genes, it would be in their evolutionary advantage because of natural selection. What's scary is losing the genes of those wild plants, and the things certain genes might contribute to that is beyond current human awareness. (For example, a gene that codes not only for eye color, but the regulation of a specific hormone that in excess can cause psychological changes. In this case, the GMO itself is the one harmed, not the one who eats the GMO, so this is more in the context if this biotechnology reached animals and humans than plants.) However, just because GMOs bring new traits that may or may not enter the wild population doesn't mean their traits will be lost. What causes loss is when humans kill these wild plants and plant GMO monocultures in their place. In this way, humans extract the ability for natural selection to take place (by reducing the gene pool) and leave only the possibility for GMO crops to pass on their genes. This is forced artificial selection, which is dangerous because the plants are no longer growing to fit their environment, the reality, but to fit human wants, which are distorted. We don't know everything, so what we select for might not be what's best. Especially if there is self-interest involved in deciding “what’s best.” Monsanto, for example, might decide that a crop resistant to their own pesticide is beneficial because it brings the company a double income. (If you want to successfully grow crops while using the pesticide, the crops should be resistant to it.) But in reality, that's just making more pesticide use, which is detrimental to ecological health (glyphosate or Roundup, for example, can harm some soil microbes, kill the milkweed necessary for monarch butterflies to lay eggs, and cause birth defects in amphibians. While Monsanto claims Roundup does not get into groundwater because it is retained in the soil until broken down into phosphate and carbon, different soils hold the chemical in different ways, meaning that in some areas, water contamination can occur. Surface water can also be impacted by way of runoff.)


  Greed and self-interest are the roots of what is classically known as evil. They are the opposite of love because love is putting what you love in front of yourself in priority. I think greed comes from looking at the meterstick and wishing you had more of a positive-sounding extreme than other people, trying to be better than them even though they cannot be. Trying anyways, their balance is shifted.

  The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil might have been what opened humanity's eyes to the meterstick and to worrisome “economics,” which is what we get out of the study of choices, and induced greed. Animals do not have economic systems and thus their actions might not be motivated by a distorted meterstick. Humans were supposed to be “natural" like this, and that's why I think we can learn from animals. But we are not natural, so we must work with our unnatural selves and unnatural ways as best we can to fit in with the natural, and not destroy ourselves by being greedy.


  Natural, I believe, is ideal for living beings. It's like a God given balance. Unnatural is not necessarily good or bad, but deviates from our original gifted setting. It is intervention- sometimes from above or below, or just human thought. Natural is what science explains and happens by default. So a medical miracle is unnatural, but a factory farm is also unnatural. As you can see, the two are of different extremes.


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