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LoveNotHate
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10 Sep 2015, 5:46 am

Analogous to Newton's third law of motion, and the expression, "you can't get something for nothing", it seems to me that for every advantage comes an equal disadvantage, so there is no privilege.

For example, wealthy people would seem to be privileged group, yet there are many possible disadvantages ...

-wealth can make a person a snob
-cause one to believe their self-worth is tied to the wealth
-cause one to suicide when they lose a lot of wealth
-cause others to kill the person to get the wealth
-cause much stress in maintaining the wealth
- ........ etc.

Several lottery winners have later said, "... winning a huge lottery was the worse thing that ever happened to me ...".

I am going one step further, and saying that I think these or other disadvantages do develop in response to the advantage.

What do you think? Privilege exists or not?



nerdygirl
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10 Sep 2015, 5:59 am

LoveNotHate wrote:
Analogous to Newton's third law of motion, and the expression, "you can't get something for nothing", it seems to me that for every advantage comes an equal disadvantage, so there is no privilege.

For example, wealthy people would seem to be privileged group, yet there are many possible disadvantages ...

-wealth can make a person a snob
-cause one to believe their self-worth is tied to the wealth
-cause one to suicide when they lose a lot of wealth
-cause others to kill the person to get the wealth
-cause much stress in maintaining the wealth
- ........ etc.


I am going one step further, and saying that I think these or other disadvantages do develop in response to the advantage.

What do you think? Privilege exists or not?


Except for possibly being a snob, I believe that the rest of the list can also be said of people who are poor and their struggle in not being able to get out of poverty or their strive to obtain more wealth.

And being a "snob" is not always seen as a bad thing by people. I happen to think it is, but I have known people who see snobbery as a legitimate right.

Wealth buys opportunity. That is a GREAT privilege. It is so great that opportunity for the poor will not even exist unless the rich share their wealth. Poverty does not bring opportunity. Period.

So, yes...Privilege exists.



Grebels
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10 Sep 2015, 6:11 am

I am retired with a small government pension, yet a moments reflection tells me I am priviledged. For a start I have the National Health Service free of charge. Its all a very relative thing. I have the freedom to pursue my life as I wish. I am not looking fearfully over my shoulder.

Now I can look back on my life and see how certain traits held me captive and caused a lot of pain. Its something many of us experience. At this late stage in life I am learning how to deal with these things. Yes, it is a big regret that I hadn't done so earlier.



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10 Sep 2015, 12:47 pm

LoveNotHate wrote:
Analogous to Newton's third law of motion, and the expression, "you can't get something for nothing", it seems to me that for every advantage comes an equal disadvantage, so there is no privilege.

You make a huge leap here.

You go from "wealth may sometimes have disadvantages" to "the advantages of wealth are exactly balanced by the disadvantages".

There is considerable evidence that this is not the case. Wealthy people, up to a certain value of wealth (I believe it is an income of approximately $70,000 p/a in an average area of America), live longer, happier lives. Furthermore, their children also benefit - they are less likely to commit crime, they receive better educations, they are healthier, happier, and wealthier themselves.

What advantage does the Ugandan homosexual have over the Ugandan heterosexual? Or the British homosexual?

Let's say Mr Jones is falsely accused of paedophilia. Although the accusations do not lead to a criminal conviction, he is still widely believed to be a paedophile. He receives national media coverage, condemning him; his protestations of innocence are dismissed. Businesses refuse to serve him, his friends will not speak to him, his wife leaves him and he loses his job. Using your logic, he should suddenly receive some massive advantage that counters all this out. Even if a human rights group raises a huge sum of money for him, will that make up for his destroyed reputation and lost relationships?



justkillingtime
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10 Sep 2015, 1:01 pm

I think privilege can be outside wealth. I think children can be privileged who have child-oriented, loving parents as opposed to children who are abused by their parents.


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LoveNotHate
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10 Sep 2015, 1:30 pm

The_Walrus wrote:

There is considerable evidence that this is not the case. Wealthy people, up to a certain value of wealth (I believe it is an income of approximately $70,000 p/a in an average area of America), live longer, happier lives. Furthermore, their children also benefit - they are less likely to commit crime, they receive better educations, they are healthier, happier, and wealthier themselves.

Superficially, it may seem like there that that there is only advantage.

However, most people with $70,000 incomes in America are in debt. They are "debt slaves" for life precisely for the reasons you mention. They want to live in better neighborhoods, with better schools, and life a happier lifestyle ...

So, they develop the disadvantage of taking on credit card, mortgage debt, auto loan debt, etc to achieve that "happier lifestyle".

The_Walrus wrote:
What advantage does the Ugandan homosexual have over the Ugandan heterosexual? Or the British homosexual?

-He is probably less likely to be hurt (emotionally or physically) by a lover
-He is probably less likely to have sex, and thus, less likely to contact sexual disease(s).

He likely receives many of the advantages single/celibate people have over married people.

The_Walrus wrote:
Let's say Mr Jones is falsely accused of paedophilia. Although the accusations do not lead to a criminal conviction, he is still widely believed to be a paedophile. He receives national media coverage, condemning him; his protestations of innocence are dismissed. Businesses refuse to serve him, his friends will not speak to him, his wife leaves him and he loses his job. Using your logic, he should suddenly receive some massive advantage that counters all this out. Even if a human rights group raises a huge sum of money for him, will that make up for his destroyed reputation and lost relationships?

He has gained freedom.

In the Joplin song it's said, "Freedom is another word for 'nothing left to lose'".

People murder their whole family for freedom.



LoveNotHate
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10 Sep 2015, 1:48 pm

nerdygirl wrote:
[
Wealth buys opportunity. That is a GREAT privilege. It is so great that opportunity for the poor will not even exist unless the rich share their wealth. Poverty does not bring opportunity. Period.
So, yes...Privilege exists.


But holy people take "vows of poverty" to avert the corruption of wealth.

They see an advantage to poverty; you won't tie yourself to possessions.

The things you own won't end up owning you.



Aristophanes
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10 Sep 2015, 2:20 pm

LoveNotHate wrote:
Analogous to Newton's third law of motion, and the expression, "you can't get something for nothing", it seems to me that for every advantage comes an equal disadvantage, so there is no privilege.

For example, wealthy people would seem to be privileged group, yet there are many possible disadvantages ...

-wealth can make a person a snob
-cause one to believe their self-worth is tied to the wealth
-cause one to suicide when they lose a lot of wealth
-cause others to kill the person to get the wealth
-cause much stress in maintaining the wealth
- ........ etc.

Several lottery winners have later said, "... winning a huge lottery was the worse thing that ever happened to me ...".

I am going one step further, and saying that I think these or other disadvantages do develop in response to the advantage.

What do you think? Privilege exists or not?


The thesis is a fallacy-- you're applying rules from a logical system (Newton's laws) to an illogical system (society). Newton's laws are based on the premise that both sides of the equation cancel out and thus equal 0, the social world makes no such assumption.

Examples:
-wealth can make a person a snob. --the person in question may have no problem with being a snob and furthermore may feel no downside to being a snob, especially if surrounded by other snobbish people.

-cause one to believe their self-worth is tied to the wealth. --Being wealthy they may see this as a good thing and thus get positive reinforcement from the concept.

-cause one to suicide when they lose a lot of wealth. --no argument there, although it's rare. When it does occur it's sensationalized making it seem much more common than it is.

-cause others to kill the person to get the wealth. --in the modern world virtually impossible since most people don't carry their wealth on their person but rather in investments and banks.

-cause much stress in maintaining the wealth. -- some may relish that competition and the stress that comes with it and thus view it as a positive.

I understand your argument, the underlying premise being everyone has problems, but when we apply scientific reasoning to illogical creatures (humans) we find it often fails since individual values come into play and there is no requirement that an individual value be logical.

edit: removed redundancies and fixed grammar-- I'm thinking really slow today.



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10 Sep 2015, 2:52 pm

While it's a poetic metaphor, social privilege doesn't lend itself to rigid analysis.

But there is absolutely no question in my mind that privilege exists.

Imagine that every person in your country were ranked on whatever scale you choose. Wealth is easy to understand--so you have a line up of the richest to the poorest people in your country. If you're struggling, perhaps you're three quarters of the way back in that line--in the 75th percentile.

But compare your quality of life in that position with the quality of life of a person who is in the 75th percentile in, say, Somalia. Or North Korea. Or India. That gap in quality of life is a representation of your national privilege.

Do the same exercise with the men and women in your country. How does one man compare with the woman who is at exactly the same relative position of wealth? How does a white person compare to their counterpart among racial minorities?

Privilege doesn't mean that a person has it easy, or that a person is prosperous. But it does mean that a person doesn't face additional social obstacles in their quest for success.


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10 Sep 2015, 3:14 pm

...I thought this was going to be a " white skin privilege " line .
Or a 60s movie with Paul Jones that I've never seen :) ! !! !! !! !!



nerdygirl
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10 Sep 2015, 3:25 pm

LoveNotHate wrote:
nerdygirl wrote:
[
Wealth buys opportunity. That is a GREAT privilege. It is so great that opportunity for the poor will not even exist unless the rich share their wealth. Poverty does not bring opportunity. Period.
So, yes...Privilege exists.


But holy people take "vows of poverty" to avert the corruption of wealth.

They see an advantage to poverty; you won't tie yourself to possessions.

The things you own won't end up owning you.


The ones who left behind a life of wealth to take this vow were enabled a choice by their wealth. This is opportunity.

Those who entered "orders" like nuns who came from poverty often have no choice OR it is an opportunity that is provided TO them through the sharing of wealth (ie. through the Church that supports the convent, etc.) They did not come too this opportunity through their own poverty.

People in poverty may not be owned by possessions, but they may be owned by despair. People can be owned by anything, so I think that disadvantages in relation to character have to be completely ignored in comparing privilege.



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10 Sep 2015, 3:46 pm

Where do I sign up :D!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

It maybe a tough job, but I am willing to take on all of that suffering caused by wealth because that's the charitable kinda guy I am!

Any millionaires out there can pm me right here on WP right now if you need someone to unload all of that suffering-causing wealth onto. I could handle a million. But if youre really desperate to get rid of more than a million we can negotiate. Maybe I will allow you to give as much as several of your millions despite all of the "suffering" I would be taking on to do that.



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10 Sep 2015, 3:54 pm

...What he said :) !








="naturalplastic"]Where do I sign up :D!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

It maybe a tough job, but I am willing to take on all of that suffering caused by wealth because that's the charitable kinda guy I am!

Any millionaires out there can pm me right here on WP right now if you need someone to unload all of that suffering-causing wealth onto. I could handle a million. But if youre really desperate to get rid of more than a million we can negotiate. Maybe I will allow you to give as much as several of your millions despite all of the "suffering" I would be taking on to do that.[/quote]



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10 Sep 2015, 3:57 pm

The poor do not even have the luxury of having some of the problems the very wealthy face....

For instance we'll never know what its like to loose a million dollars whilst still keeping millionaire status...might know what its like to lose a significantly less amount of money you really needed, or have someone rob you at a time of great inconvenience....or have to live on the streets and/or in crappy rooming situations due to financial hardship. Must really be so hard on the very wealthy.


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10 Sep 2015, 10:44 pm

The term "Privilege" carries an implicit threat to take something away from those lumped in with the privileged. The "privileged" might be left resentful at their assumed guilt, pondering what of theirs is about to get pinched or redistributed. With some folks, being cast as the villains in this social theory will make them hostile to the "disadvantaged". With others, it will guilt trip them into accepting hostile maneuvers against themselves.



Last edited by Nebogipfel on 10 Sep 2015, 10:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.