There is a phrase that floats around college campuses, Princeton being no exception, that threatens to strike down opinions without regard for their merits, but rather solely on the basis of the person that voiced them.
When we similarly sacrifice for our descendents by caring for the planet, it’s called “environmentalism,” and is applauded.But when we do it by passing along property and a set of values, it’s called “privilege.” (And when we do it by raising questions about our crippling national debt, we’re called Tea Party radicals.) Such sacrifice of any form shouldn’t be scorned, but admired. I recognize that it was my parents’ privilege and now my own that there is such a thing as an American dream which is attainable even for a penniless Jewish immigrant.I can say with certainty there was no legacy involved in any of his accomplishments. Now would you say that we’ve been really privileged? That’s the problem with calling someone out for the “privilege” which you assume has defined their narrative.You don’t know what their struggles have been, what they may have gone through to be where they are.Furthermore, I condemn them for casting the equal protection clause, indeed the very idea of a meritocracy, as a myth, and for declaring that we are all governed by invisible forces (some would call them “stigmas” or “societal norms”), that our nation runs on racist and sexist conspiracies.
Forget “you didn’t build that;” check your privilege and realize that nothing you have accomplished is real.Maybe it was the privilege my grandfather had of taking on the local Rabbi’s work in that DP camp, telling him that the spiritual leader shouldn’t do hard work, but should save his energy to pass Jewish tradition along to those who might survive.Perhaps it was the privilege my great-grandmother and those five great-aunts and uncles I never knew had of being shot into an open grave outside their hometown. Or maybe it’s the privilege my grandmother had of spending weeks upon weeks on a death march through Polish forests in subzero temperatures, one of just a handful to survive, only to be put in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp where she would have died but for the Allied forces who liberated her and helped her regain her health when her weight dwindled to barely 80 pounds.First, that there was a place at all that would take them from the ruins of Europe.And second, that such a place was one where they could legally enter, learn the language, and acclimate to a society that ultimately allowed them to flourish.Even when you don’t have to get medieval on him and cut contact, I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it a million times again, this whole staying in touch and trying to be friends after you’ve broken up is BS – just ask the millions of women out there that are secretly hoping for him to suddenly see them for the great women they are so they can have their fairy tale ending, who actually in effect end up being used for a shag and/or an ego stroke.