I’ve snagged another meme. This one is to help examine privileges/social class. The meme comes from What Privileges Do You Have?, based on an exercise about class and privilege developed by Will Barratt, Meagan Cahill, Angie Carlen, Minnette Huck, Drew Lurker, Stacy Ploskonka at Illinois State University.
If you participate in this blog game, they ask that you PLEASE acknowledge their copyright. To participate, copy and paste…then unbold my responses to make your own.
Bold the items that apply to you:
1. Father went to college
2. Father finished college
4. Mother finished college
5. Have any relative who is an attorney, physician, or professor
7. Had more than 50 books in your childhood home.
8. Had more than 500 books in your childhood home.
12. The people in the media who dress and talk like me are portrayed positively.
14. Your parents (or a trust) paid for the majority of your college costs.
15. Your parents (or a trust) paid for all of your college costs
16. Went to a private high school
17. Went to summer camp
18. Had a private tutor before you turned 18
19. Family vacations involved staying at hotels
20. Your clothing was all bought new before you turned 18
21. Your parents bought you a car that was not a hand-me-down from them
23. You and your family lived in a single-family house
24. Your parent(s) owned their own house or apartment before you left home
25. You had your own room as a child
26. You had a phone in your room before you turned 18
27. Participated in a SAT/ACT prep course
28. Had your own TV in your room in high school 29. Owned a mutual fund or IRA in high school or college
30. Flew anywhere on a commercial airline before you turned 16
32. Went on more than one cruise with your family
33. Your parents took you to museums and art galleries as you grew up.
I know I’m privileged. My kids are, too, even though they sure know how much the heating bills are and we’ve never gone on a cruise. My husband, on the other hand, would say yes only to #24, and the family built that home with their own hands. Most of the questions would strike him as ludicrous.
On the other hand, they did have water buffaloes and elephants on their farm. How many of us can say the same?
What really struck me about this is that the person from whom I lifted it bolded nearly all the statements — and then argued that she wasn’t privileged.
At the very least, those of us who are privileged should appreciate it and be thankful for it. We may not be able to ensure that wealth is distributed evenly, but for us to take it so lightly that we don’t even acknowledge and value our good fortune seems pretty disrespectful.
I saw a comedian not long ago (Daniel Tosh, and what an obnoxious jerk he seems to be! Maybe it’s just his character, though) who was talking about the TV program Survivor. I don’t watch this program, but I thought that it involved people being put into a deserted wilderness. Apparently, it is actually about people being put in inhabited places — places where people are already living — and then folks watch them having to manage to survive. I find this bizarre. Maybe there’s more to it. If not, then it is a testament to how spoiled and unappreciative we are.
Try out the meme, and marvel at your good fortune!