As part of my quest to find my motivation, I've accepted the 30 Day Writing Challenge. Each post will be added to the main post HERE.
Five Privileges I Enjoy
Since it is so often misunderstood, I'll start with the definition of "privilege" as set forth by Merriam-Webster: a right or immunity granted as a peculiar benefit, advantage, or favor. In layman's terms, that means "that some of us have advantages over others for any number of reasons we don't control - like who we are, where we come from, the color of our skin, or certain things that have happened in our lives." It is about society and culture, not about gifts given to us for good behavior (such as what we think of as our privileges given to us by our parents and/or teachers when we are children).
We all have privilege of some sort. (Leastwise, you do if you're reading this blog.) It is vital that we recognize them so that we take it upon ourselves to learn, reflect, research, change what we are able, acknowledge what we're not able, and lend the benefits we enjoy from our privileged positions to help those in other positions.
These are five privileges I have.
1. White Privilege
Nope, my life isn't always easy, but it's never been hard because of my skin color.
2. Cisgender Privilege
Being a woman is fraught with its own difficulties (I surely don't have the ever-pervasive male privilege), but I do not have to concern myself with being harassed or harmed for going into the women's restroom or changing room. I can also show outward affection to my husband while in public without a care in the world.
3. Able-Bodied Privilege
Everything I want my body to do, it does. I get to control that fully and that is taken for granted. I'm not the butt of jokes or the subject of ugly memes, because my body works differently.
4. Educational Privilege
I not only have access to quality, higher education, but am given credibility solely for the fact that I'm a college graduate. My intelligence level has little to do with this credibility, as it's often given before a person even hears me speak or reads my writing.
5. Socioeconomic Privilege
Things are hard at home right now. My husband lost his job and is now working three to bring home only 60% of what he was making before. We don't get to eat all we want, we're not traveling anywhere, I can't even get myself a hair cut, but we own our home, we will have electricity to run our air conditioner during the upcoming oppressively and dangerously hot Arizona summer, we have clean drinking water, and our son will have shoes on his feet even if he hits a growth spurt. And because my husband has clean, pressed clothes and a permanent home address, he can go on interviews and be sure he'll get a fair shot at the job.
I have privilege. Right now, what I'm doing with it is this. I'm writing about it, hoping to prompt you to consider your privilege, working to open thought in others.