The privilege of being privileged

Privilege imposes all sorts of conscious and unconscious filters that frame each potential course of action as realistic or utopian, effective or superficial. Even the evidence about ‘what works’ is processed through these filters. The world looks very different from the top and bottom of the pile, but if the supply of money for social change is controlled by those at the top then only a restricted range of possibilities will be supported—and they won’t include transforming the system that put them there in the first place: there’s way too much to lose.

That’s because transformative solutions rely on sacrifice, sharing and radical equality so that the interests of the ‘non-privileged’ are prioritized and actualized at every step—the millions of people who do the work of justice and caring and organizing and protesting and governing and creating and performing on a daily basis. Liberalism keeps the relationships between money and social change pretty much as they are, doling out a few more crumbs from the rich man’s table in the hope that they’ll eventually make a cake. Transformative approaches accept that the cake must be baked from a whole new recipe that restructures those relationships, opening the way for more radical solutions to gain support.

Read the rest at openDemocracy


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