Blog Response Week 11, Prompt 2

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The CDQ is theoretically appealing given that it provides economic opportunities for people of coastal Western Alaska. However, while this quota is marketable and allows the poor to participate in the market, it does not help empower these local populations. In order for empowerment to occur, education needs to take place. It is of course understandable that a global agency wants to work to “incorporate residents into the capitalist market,” (Mansfield 495) but this agency must first immerse itself in these local settings in order to craft a program most suitable to each unique area and situation instead of offering a blanket solution. Additionally, empowerment comes through political education; I think these locals need to not only have access to the political process, but they need to be taught how to mobilize and successfully participate in such a forum. This lack of education is a historically-entrenched problem that is really inhibiting true empowerment.

I do believe that industrialized countries have a responsibility to protect the natural resources in developing societies. Instead of distantly creating programs designed to solve the social and environmental inequities, industrialized countries would make the biggest impact if they instead helped implement local education programs so that the people of each community are themselves empowered to instigate change and justice. As Sen emphasizes in “The Ends and the Means of Development,” social opportunities like education and health care are the tools that are going to lead to greater participation in economic and political activities.

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