FORBIDDEN TO SMOKE AT ALL COSTSWritten by Candas Emcioglu
Employees at Weyco Inc., a medical company in Michigan, are required to undergo a tobacco test designed to monitor their tobacco usage. The company’s new no-smoking rule has banned its employees from smoking both at home and at work. The controversial policy dictates that failing to take tobacco test will result in termination of employment, and four employees, who refused to take test, have already been fired.
Although Weyco’s CEO has responded to critics that sole purpose of policy is to create a smoke-free and healthy work environment, many believe that policy was drafted as an obvious excuse to cut down Weyco’s medical and insurance costs. Critics argue that this policy is a discrimination against lifestyle choices, and an invasion of privacy, as it allows company to have a say in what its employees do outside work. Many are understandably worried that this policy will serve as a launching platform for many other potentially discriminating policies in future.
Following logic of this policy, if sole purpose is to create a “healthy” work environment, as it has been justified, companies should be allowed to force their obese employees to lose weight. After all, excessive eating and obesity are health risks as serious as those caused by tobacco usage. Perhaps some companies would even be arrogant and pervasive enough to provide an arbitrary list of what “can” and “cannot” be eaten with another list in fineprint of “what” can be eaten “where” at “what time” of day.
Imagine a business dinner, where people are not allowed to order a bottle of wine as a result of a zero-tolerance-to-alcohol company policy, or an alcohol and cigarette free christmas party. Perhaps, some foresighted companies will take next step and demand job applicants to undergo genetic tests to see if they may have any genetic dispositions to any diseases that may eventually cost company medical expenses. The logic is so flexible that, along side parking ticket that we get for parking next to a water hydrant, we may even find ourselves getting “dress-code tickets” from our companies. Technically speaking, failing to wear a scarf and a warm head cover on a cold winter day, could be perceived by company CEO as a highly irresponsible act and a cause of company resources wasted on employee sick days. As farfetched as some of these examples may sound, there is no reason why they could not be adopted by companies in future, if discriminating policies like that of Weyco are tolerated today.
Take a look around; do you think things are balanced in our world?Written by Jesse S. Somer
Balance, now here is a topic that has been hounding me since day I was born. An understanding of balance seems to be a very important idea when it comes to living a happy, 'balanced' life here on Earth. It has come to my attention that Universe and everything within it is governed by principle of evenness between positive and negative energies. Both in realms of spirituality and science there have been many people over years who have been discussing concept that all things in Nature have a natural inclination to find a balanced state of being.
After any chemical reaction between atoms, (which of course all matter that exists is mad up of), protons and electrons move into a position where their energies are of equal value. As far as I know all religions and belief systems held by human beings state that to find enlightenment or peace one has to experience all necessary feelings and emotions integral to living a full life. This means that one has to experience both suffering and joy to truly gain knowledge about what it means to be alive. If you run from your feelings, you are not walking 'middle path' and therefore you're destined to have an imbalance in terms of gaining wisdom and happiness.
Let's look at a few occurrences that happen regularly in life of our Universe. How about process of a star exploding out in space? One might believe that this happening is a negative one, especially if it is our Sun that we are talking about, as this will mean end of life on our world. But what happens when a star explodes? It has been understood that energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only move from one place to another. Therefore, once our Sun explodes, hopefully many billion years from now, energy will travel out into space only to conglomerate and converge once again to form new stars and subsequent life. Even if energy of our Sun just dissipates back into general energy of space we can perceive this as a balanced equation in respect that it is that exact space that our Sun evolved from in first place.
What about a romantic relationship? For a friendship to work properly between two parties amount of energy or effort in terms of love and attention must be equal. If it is otherwise, one person will undoubtedly feel as though they are being neglected, or that they are giving too much and so feel depleted. How about a business deal? Either companies or people have to come away from trade feeling that they have gained at least equal amount of value as they have given away.