Privilege is Not a Sin

Privilege is not a sin: it is a fact.

Being offended is not a fact: it is a reaction and a choice.

Being insulted is a fact: how you react to it is a choice.

Being disabled is not a fact: it is relative to your needs, your surroundings and the capacity and willingness of others to assist.

Being alone is a fact: being lonely is a reaction to being alone.

Being stressed is a fact: feeling the weight of that stress is a fact: inability to cope with that stress is relative – different for each individual.

Being small is a fact: becoming more aggressive as a result is either a matter of survival or a choice.

Being male is not a crime: being white is not a crime: being old is not a crime: they are all just facts. yet all three are viewed by some as a deliberate anti-social act and by others as a matter of superiority.

Being a person whose family member has died is a fact: being bereaved is a reaction.

Grief is good: stoicism is good: anguish is good: being calm is good: being agitated is less good:

Being angry is normal: being aggressive or violent is anti-social and unnecessary.

Being a Christian is a choice: being a Muslim is a choice: being an atheist is a choice: being a lawyer is a choice: being a hippy or a white supremacist is a choice. being Jewish is a fact: being a practising Jew is a choice.

Being Christian in some societies is a desire to be conformist and to feel safe: in other societies it can get you killed.

Love is meaningless unless used collectively to describe a social situation in which empathy and compassion resulting in acts of selflessness result in fewer people suffering.

Suffering is normal:: it is what we do with it that gives our lives meaning.

Adventures can happen without getting out of bed: they do not require the failure to wear appropriate headgear in risky situations: that is recklessness.

Trying to push foreign objects into our own orifices is a natural extension of human imagination: it is almost universal in children over 4 and under 12: most people, but not all,  abandon the habit sometime after that.

Communing with nature on a daily basis has a calming effect on our body: living in the English countryside is not communing with nature as every square inch is designed by or controlled by people in an unnatural way. we have been around for millions of years but we only started settling and altering our environment twelve thousand years ago: so a genuine eco-warrior will dislike all those who work the land or who choose to live in a rural area.

So a couple, standing on the door to their country home before a crackling log fire, waiting for their locally foraged rabbit stew to cook,  are no different from BP or Monsanto: it’s simply a matter of degree.

Being white, being black, being brown, being green, being gay, being straight, being female, being male, being trans, being tall, being young, being middle-aged, being old, being deaf, being blind, being depressed: these are not attitudes; these are not faults; these are not in any way defining – these are just being: defining yourself in any of these ways is a choice.