You know what bothers me about the Sallies that blindly parrot “check your privilege” to any person they disagree with? Particularly the Sallies that clearly have privilege themselves?
It reminds me of something.
When you were a kid, and being forced to eat some soggy peas or Mom’s “special” meat loaf was the worst crime on the planet, did your parents ever pull the “there are children starving in the world, so you better eat this!” card on you? “Be thankful, all those little children in Africa will NEVER have what you have!”
It reminds me of that.
And then the smartass kid snaps back with some retort about how, well, okay, that sucks. But how does me eating broccoli feed hundreds of starving children? How does me “being thankful” cure malaria or house the homeless?
It doesn’t. Mom still bought those twenty packs of instant meatloaf—half of which winds up in the trash—and didn’t think of giving one to the foodbank. And now she’s using her actions to guilt you into doing what she wants, and only really seems to care about those poor starving kids when it’s most convenient.
But! You’re a kid, you don’t know what’s best, and you need to eat those nasty veggies to grow up strong!
But! Privilege does exist, and we’ll never be able to overcome it if it isn’t acknowledged!
These are both correct!
So why not tell it as it is?
Those are the reasons mom wants you to eat your veggies, and those are the reasons that privilege should be checked.
So why piddling about with the self-righteous guilt-tripping when the “hidden motive” is your truthful good intention? Show the kid the benefit of growing up healthy. Show the benefit of acknowledging privilege.
Don’t kick and scream and guilt-trip just for the sake of manipulating someone. Speak to them.
Naturally, there’ll always be that one kid that’ll make himself puke before he eats his veggies, just like there’ll be the racist, sexist idiot who can’t comprehend that their experience is not that of every other person in the world.
So the kid goes to bed hungry and grumpy and the -ist idiot gets to wallow in his own vitriol as the world progresses past him. Let them. Hopefully the kid will realize that eating nothing but pizza might have something to do with their neverending acne outbreaks and the -ist realizes his attitude is why he’s being treated as if there was acne all over his goddamned personality.
And once they come to that realization, they can’t blame it on their naggy, guilt-tripping mother who made cooking unbearable, and they can’t blame it on the shrieking Tumblr skeksis that policed their every move. Then they realize it was them that chose to eat so unhealthy…and that it’s them responsible for their image to the public.
Not everyone lives a life wrought with epiphany, and that can’t be helped.
So let the tantrum-throwers go to bed hungry and help the others become big and strong.
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