Social Status Alters Immune System (Low Rank In The Group Leads to Inflammation)

“Human health and longevity are linked to Socio-economic status… This link persists regardless of factors such as access to decent health care or clean water… Low-ranking monkeys had different proportions of immune system cells circulating in their blood… And in some of these cells activity in genes involved in immune response was dialed up. These changes are the cellular and genomic hallmarks of chronic, harmful inflammation. These types of inflammation is like a generic fertilizer that feeds the development of many chronic diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular disease… Low social standing leads to elevated stress that harms the body… Being a chronically subordinate nonhuman primate and being a human mired at the bottom of socio-economic scale are similar in the most fundamental ways… You have remarkably little control and predictability in your life, your outlets for frustration are limited, and it’s relatively hard to access social support. That’s the prescription for chronic, stress-related maladies.”
Rachel Ehrenberg, “Social Status Alters Immune System (Low Rank in Group Leads to Inflammation)”, SN (Science News Magazine), Dec. 24, 2016 – Jan. 7, 2017, p. 7

Several decades ago, during “democratic” 60s – 70s it was considered by many politicians-democrats and scholars with democratic sensibility “not-elegant” to mention the probable connection between poverty, homelessness and chronic unemployment with physical illnesses and low life expectancy. Today, with the development of medical sciences this connection has become more evident, although far from being more accepted. In a world of “ideological justice” and slogan-equality factual injustice and inequality are seldom picked up by free speech.

The fact that being on the bottom of social pyramid causes high stress related maladies is telling us that people perceive their deprivations related to low economic status as injustice. It is this humiliation of being treated as less of a human being than others subdues one’s sense of worth and lowers one’s immune health leading to chronic inflammation which triggers number of illnesses. In really democratic society nobody feels “on the bottom”. But In the 21st century democratic societies are more and more deviating from democratic ideals. Conservative prospect of (profit oriented) privatization of Social Security and Medical care and the promise to eliminate even food stamps program (among other examples of conservative “negatively creative” socio-economic thinking) is not just undemocratic but typical pre-democratic behavior. When the “owners of jobs” put Americans out of work in order to save money by using foreign workers, it is a form of human sacrifice, when people are victimized by the proud conservative dream of austerity for the majority of the population.

As we see, American conservatives are becoming not only more conservative, meaning even less progressively oriented, but more progressively conservative, with more fresh-and-bright innovative vignettes on their outworn conservative worldviews. They’re, as if, have internalized the democratic creative modality of thinking about society in developmental context of change into their retrograde goals and agendas. They coopt the very idea of political innovations for the benefit of outdated – pre-humanistic socio-economic practices.