educational privilege and humanity
April 12, 2009 § 37 Comments
1. what do we deserve? as human beings? as sentient beings in this universe? and why do we deserve them?
2. i do not deserve a good job, or a beautiful home, or health care because i went to school and got my degree. i deserve them because i am a human being. if i were to say that i deserve them because of how many years i spent in school, or how much money i paid to go to school, or the number of letters behind my name, then i am saying that i deserve basic human dignity because of my educational privilege.
3. and if i were to say that then i would be saying that other folks who dont have a degree dont deserve healthy food, or a safe environment to live in, or rewarding and fulling work.
4. and if i am saying that those things that human beings deserve simply because they are alive. here. in this universe. those are the things i deserve because of my educational degree. then i am saying that i deserve basic human dignity. but other people, who dont have a degree, and dont have healthy food, or fulfilling work, or safe living environment, they dont deserve basic human dignity. and thus they, who are not as deserving as i, are sub-human.
5. and why would i say this? why would i couple my education with my right to live a dignified life? why would i say that my privilege is what makes me human.
6. and it is not enough to say: well, if others had the opportunities i had, they would do the same thing i am. i have opportunities, because they were taken from others. i can go to college because the land that that college is built on was stolen from another people. the information that i am studying was stolen from another people and then given to me. the paper that i am writing on was stolen from trees which were stolen from forests which were stolen from another people and then that paper was given to me. and those other people dont have a high rate of doctoral candidates.
7. there is a difference between what i can do. what i am allowed to do. and what i deserve to do.
8. i am saying this to remind myself. that i too deserve to be treated like i am fully human. because i am. and i dont have a college degree. and someday i will have one. and i will not deserve a better life because i have that degree. i will deserve exactly what i deserve now. my humanity.