TaN: Compensation for labor, regardless of the nature, should be equal for all or, at least, the least preferred should receive the highest pay.
One of the basis of this concept is the Parable of the Vineyard (in Matthew 20:1-16) where, though the laborers were hired at different times and worked for different durations, they received the same compensation. My argument is that, for as long as labor was rendered honestly, regardless of the nature of the work, all must receive the same compensation. This, of course, is assuming that the work tasked is essential – and not just to say that one has done something (e.g., janitorial services are as important to the chairman of the board of a company insofar as the smooth operations and functioning of a company is concerned, but not athletes or sports players unless the company is in the business of sports and of athletics).
Another proposition is to have a graduated salary scale where the least preferred and/or strenuous and demanding jobs will receive the highest compensation – especially in terms of physical requirements or manual labor but with due consideration to the physically incapacitated (because their physical incapacity is not intentional nor desired).
These proposals are being introduced in an attempt to provide a more just and equitable system of compensation with respect to the amount of effort or work put in so as to reduce the wealth gap among men. With the present system, the set up rewards the least important – in terms of its impact on the lives of people to have a better quality of life – who gets the largest compensation (e.g., professional athletes, especially in First World or industrialized countries, receiving annual salaries that range from several hundreds to thousands of times what the lowly but essential farmer makes). Just think about what a professional sports player receives (say 10 million a year, conservatively) against that of a farmer or fisherfolk (say 50 a day, equivalent to 18,000 a year, a far cry from the compensation of an average professional sports player).
By any standard or argument, it is a terrible and obscene injustice for a person whose compensation is so grossly disporportional to the importance of his/her work- its value to society and to man’s betterment – to that received by someone whose every act provides nourishment and life to/for others. This cannot be a result of a lack in industriousness nor hard work; it is the system that is at fault. And, to add insult to injury, this injustice is not a result of a failure of the system but, on the contrary, the very indication that the system works. This is because the system in place has been designed to give the best benefits to the most worthless work and the least to the most valuable. THE SYSTEM HAS TO BE CHANGED – IF NOT PEACEFULLY, THEN WHATEVER IT TAKES TO RECTIFY THIS INJUSTICE!
TaN: Believe it or not, suffering (including death) is all part of God’s love. In a “strange” and seemingly contradictory (to our thinking and logic) way, suffering – though self-inflicted – is a way God is being loving and merciful. It is only in suffering that we – both the fortunate and the unfortunate in life – are given the opportunity to become better and worthy of God.
For the fortunate, it is only in suffering that they are accorded the chance to show mercy and generosity to others – as the Father has more than shown His mercy and His generosity towards us – for it is written (in repeated instances) that “as we show mercy towards others, so shall the Father show mercy towards us”, that (from Jesus Himself, in His teachings) “the deeds you do to the least of your brethren, you do to me”, and many more. We are enriched by the kindness, the mercy, and the generosity we freely give to others.
As for the unfortunate, even though they are the recipients of the kindness, the mercy, and the generosity, they are, nevertheless, serving as instruments – enduring the hardship, the misery, and the suffering – by which the fortunate will be given the opportunity to be worthy of God’s Kingdom.
As for death, it is but a necessity where misery and pain will finally come to an end – a rest, a respite from the suffering that we, deservingly or not, inflicted on ourselves and on one another.