• Judaka
    708

    Truth vs Framing vs Interpretation, it is not a matter of listening, recognising and understanding. Leftist wrap themselves in their sympathies, compassion, indignation and knowledge and are satisfied that what they are saying is both righteous and true, good enough. However, it's not, those things do not justify any kind of framing and any kind of interpretation nor any kind of solution that you see fit. Of course, when I say you, I mean the ideology you subscribe to.

    I don't doubt that you can defend your sympathies, compassion, indignation and that you know more or less the facts surrounding the issues you want to talk about. What I would like to hear is a defence of your framing and interpretation, that is "privilege" because that's actually what needs to be defended. OP can say people should "renounce privilege" like a moron but perhaps someone here can actually give a compelling argument for why it is important for people to understand their privilege and why thinking about things in this way is important or useful?
  • Banno
    8.9k
    Someone... not sure who it was now... made the observation that so many of these discussions come down to trying to convince someone that they should care for someone else.

    ...perhaps someone here can actually give a compelling argument for why it is important for people to understand their privilege and why thinking about things in this way is important or useful?Judaka

    Case in point.
  • Judaka
    708

    Pity, I thought you could do better.
  • Banno
    8.9k
    I doubt you are as disappointed in my response as I am in yours.

    OP can say people should "renounce privilege" like a moronJudaka

    That's pretty much the antithesis of the OP.

    In a knutshell, recognising one's privilege is itself virtuous. More so if it leads to action, and hence to flourishing.
  • Judaka
    708

    Err true, it is the antithesis of OP, I got confused between posters.

    What kind of argument is that Banno, the conceptualisation of privilege is good because recognising one's privilege is virtuous?
  • Banno
    8.9k
    What kind of argument is that Banno,Judaka
    It's what folk call an ethical argument. Ethical arguments are about what we should do.
  • Judaka
    708

    I'm interested to hear this argument, I've yet to.
  • Banno
    8.9k
    Which argument? IS this conversation going somewhere, or will I go and vacuum the floor?
  • Judaka
    708

    No, it quite clearly isn't going anywhere, virtuous things are virtuous end of story.
  • Banno
    8.9k
    Cool. I'm off to Leftist wrap myself in sympathies, compassion, indignation and knowledge.
  • NOS4A2
    3.6k


    OP can say people should "renounce privilege" like a moron but perhaps someone here can actually give a compelling argument for why it is important for people to understand their privilege and why thinking about things in this way is important or useful?

    I haven’t seen one. In fact I think the only difference between claiming one’s privilege and claiming one’s supremacy is a guilty conscience.
  • tim wood
    4.9k
    I haven’t seen one. In fact I think the only difference between claiming one’s privilege and claiming one’s supremacy is a guilty conscience.NOS4A2

    And what supremacy would those absent a conscience claim? The convenience of psychopathy?
  • NOS4A2
    3.6k


    Racial, sexual, cultural, etc.
  • tim wood
    4.9k
    Race is out. What are your criteria for supremacy in any others?
  • Alejandro
    21
    I have no idea what are talking about now
  • BitconnectCarlos
    561
    What I would like to hear is a defence of your framing and interpretation, that is "privilege" because that's actually what needs to be defended.Judaka

    I'm not responding to defend Banno and I'm not too familiar with how the concept of privilege is used in left wing circles, but it seems to me that the idea in and of itself isn't too bad. There's never been a doubt to me that people are privileged or unprivileged in various ways and I'd say that virtually everyone is privileged in some ways and unprivileged in others.
  • Judaka
    708

    There is no great revelation to be had by knowing the conceptualisation of privilege in so far as people are born with advantages over others. This is absolutely obvious, however, that is not what privilege is about. Privilege cannot be separated from leftwing identity politics and this much is obvious. When I read you, I imagine you may be talking about intelligence, attractiveness, access to resources, talents, etc. It doesn't matter how or why you have these things but that you do and since it is very human to value these things, it'd be an odd case for someone to not want them.

    If all privilege was saying was that some individuals are born into better circumstances than others then who can argue with that? Even if you want to conceptualise that within a country, who can argue with that?

    Privilege does not do this and has absolutely no interest in privileges that do not fit into leftist identity politics theory. The narrative is that your privilege is based on your gender, sexual orientation and race. Your race is advantaged or disadvantaged based on which races were historically oppressors vs oppressed. Men oppressed women, whites oppressed everyone, cis straight oppressed other.

    Your experience in this world is shaped by your gender, sexual orientation and race. A white person recognising their privilege is about acknowledging how other races have it worse and so on. What's wrong with this conceptualisation? Let me start off by saying that this is an issue of framing and interpretation.

    Systemic racism exists, statistics show wealth has been deeply affected by historical racism, statistics show you have better chances to be privileged as a white person than black or Hispanic. I am not arguing against these statistics. However, privilege is a warped framing with no nuance or depth, it characterises history through the oppression of groups over other groups. It is not simply saying "racism, hatred of homosexuality and sexism are wrong".

    It is absolutely asking you to see individuals by the groups they belong to and in this case that is by their race, sexual orientation and gender. Which to my mind is completely fucked up, the parallels with racism and sexism are easy to make. It condemns the privileges of the advantaged groups as proceeds of a racist and sexist society. For white people would not have more if this were not true, women would be paid as much as men if this were not true.

    The benefits to recognising you have been benefited by historical racism are very hard to see. What step they are in the plan to end racism is not something that can be seen, it isn't there. All I see is the encouragement of taking note of someone's race/gender/sexual orientation and making assumptions about them, their experience and their "history". It is more about hating the rich than helping the poor.

    Unnuanced, vindictive and entirely unhelpful to the struggle to end racism or sexism. Yet those who argue hide behind their intent to end racism and sexism, that's their defence of it.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    561


    There is no great revelation to be had by knowing the conceptualisation of privilege in so far as people are born with advantages over others.

    Yes, and there's also the social part to it - how these biological traits or other unearned traits are treated in society.

    Privilege does not do this and has absolutely no interest in privileges that do not fit into leftist identity politics theory.Judaka

    I get it - you don't need to argue against leftwing formulations of identity politics or privilege
    with me because I'm not on the left.

    It is absolutely asking you to see individuals by the groups they belong to and in this case that is by their race, sexual orientation and gender.Judaka

    I agree - but what if we expanded this list? That's why I was saying earlier that the idea of privilege isn't in and of itself a leftist fantasy, and interestingly a trait can be a privilege in one circumstance and not in another. Identifying people purely through the lenses of race, sex, and sexuality is obviously stupid and I think we both agree so we can drop this point.

    I actually did go to a presentation on intersectionalism last year and to their credit the speakers did extend beyond race, sex, and sexuality. Often class is brought in (always interesting to hear about, because with class often comes culture) and the speakers did touch on physical traits and the expectations that come along with those. It was genuinely interesting to hear how these identities intersected. Whether we like it or not, we often categorize those around us by these superficial traits and we refine this conception as we get to know that person more.

    However, privilege is a warped framing with no nuance or depth, it characterises history through the oppression of groups over other groups. It is not simply saying "racism, hatred of homosexuality and sexism are wrong".

    Obviously this is an unhealthy framing of things but if the idea of privilege is understood as an unearned advantage or a perk makes sense then we should probably address it and not cover our eyes and call it liberal bullsh*t.

    I think there's some interesting conversation to be had here when we expand the idea of privilege. I also think while someone having X privilege is an overall benefit, there may very well be downsides or extra baggage associated with it.
  • Asif
    208
    Is Innate Intelligence or Beauty a "privilege"?
    Is being muscular and athletic a privilege?
    Sounds like a lot of jealousy on some peoples part.
    The will to power of misfits and Elitists.
    Theres a whole heap of priviledge being exercised at the moment in the name of "covid". And this comes from politicians and big business owners who are of every race sex and creed. But from what class?
    Its ludicrous to divorce privilege from wealth from the mega rich.
    Maybe Obama Hillary and the Saudi leadership are oppressed minorities due to this SJW logic!!!!.
    Just virtue signalling from misfits and middle class zealots.
  • Asif
    208
    This division of people into fixed rigid "groups" and narrow "identities" is itself Discrimination and Prejudice.
    But then that's exactly what politicians and populists want. And the elites are laughing at the stupidity of the so called "educated" and "intellectual".
    Politics=privilege=Class= mythical "Identity". Or maybe you dont want to see this obvious truth.
  • Judaka
    708

    It's important not to get trapped in the language here, yes the leftist framing of privilege uses the word privilege but it's not talking about what you are. The only similarity between the leftist identity politics framing of privilege and yours is that the word is applicable to both. I am not preaching to you but contextualising for you what we're talking about. When Banno asks you to "understand your privilege" he's not talking about your attractiveness or intelligence and he's not trying to, he is specifically talking about your race/gender/sexual orientation under the leftist identity politics framework. He has no interest in asking you to "check your intelligence privilege" and they have no interest in expanding the narrative, neither do I because I don't like the framing to begin with.

    Now I'm sure some of the left takes interest in other privileges but there wasn't anything useful about it when it was applied here and there isn't anything useful about it applied elsewhere.

    What people completely fail to understand is that the issue here is NOT the truth, everyone knows that people are born with different levels of intelligence, attractiveness and wealth. It's about characterising these characteristics, are they blessings, privileges, are they just part of who you are and what are the implications for someone who has these characteristics within each framing? Do people have a responsibility due to their wealth? That's part of what is being discussed here.

    Another part is emphasis, we are creating a characterisation of your personal characteristics and putting a spotlight on it. Something everyone already knew, like that it's better to be attractive but maybe it becomes part of someone's day to day thinking when it wasn't before. Maybe someone who was happy with how they looked becomes increasingly self-conscious.

    What is the benefit in sorting people into privileged and unprivileged categories? I only see spite, jealousy, discrimination, self-esteem issues, self-confidence issues and the like.

    If someone wants to be proud of their intelligence or attractiveness, let them be, what's the point in insisting that it's a special privilege of theirs? It is just part of who they are anyway, it does in fact belong to them and there's nothing malicious about it.

    If you want to look at how society treats characteristics then that's different, there could be improvements to be made there. Like how we are becoming increasingly superficial due to dating apps where you make a decision purely based on looks.

    Once again, the actual claims being made when people are talking about privilege are not necessarily incorrect. I didn't need the facts to be made in an argument about privilege to know about them but I'm not going to argue against them, I don't dislike them, it's actually totally irrelevant. I accept that systemic racism exists but that doesn't mean I accept the concept of white privilege - because it's a terrible, insidious framing. The characterisation is not justified simply because part of the argument has unquestionable facts. This really extends to the entire conceptualisation of privilege except in perhaps the most extreme of cases such as children of the uber-rich.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    561


    What is the benefit in sorting people into privileged and unprivileged categories? I only see spite, jealousy, discrimination, self-esteem issues, self-confidence issues and the like.Judaka

    I understand how the thinking can be toxic - we shouldn't be going around thinking about how someone is privileged and another person is a victim... again, since we're both more on the right we can cut out the leftist bashing.... What I'm interested in here is truth.

    It's about characterising these characteristics, are they blessings, privileges, are they just part of who you are and what are the implications for someone who has these characteristics within each framing? Do people have a responsibility due to their wealth? That's part of what is being discussed here.Judaka

    This is a question that is worth being discussed. Personally, I don't think someone having privilege entails that they need to share it or that they're guilty in some way. We're probably on the same page with this.

    If someone wants to be proud of their intelligence or attractiveness, let them be, what's the point in insisting that it's a special privilege of theirs? It is just part of who they are anyway, it does in fact belong to them and there's nothing malicious about it.

    Pride is a completely separate issue and I don't want to get into a different topic. It isn't even about insisting - verbally or through some other medium - that the person in question has a special privilege. It's simply about acknowledgment if we want to stay faithful that we're pursuing truth here (this is a philosophy forum.) I think, strictly speaking, intelligent and beautiful people do have a privilege in those regards. Average looking and people with average intelligence also have privilege, but not as much as the elites. Even if you took a special ed class you could still discuss who has privilege within that context - it's all relative.

    We don't need to draw implications from this, imo. If we put on our "anti privilege" hats and start attacking all forms of privilege we might as well just be living in Kurt Vonnegut's "Harrison Bergeron" universe.

    I accept that systemic racism exists but that doesn't mean I accept the concept of white privilege - because it's a terrible, insidious framing. The characterisation is not justified simply because part of the argument has unquestionable facts. This really extends to the entire conceptualisation of privilege except in perhaps the most extreme of cases such as children of the uber-rich.Judaka

    I don't spend a lot of time in leftist circles... whatever they do is up to them. I'm not interested in defending whatever Banno is arguing or whatever.... the way that I've framed the idea of privilege makes sense to me and it's certainly interesting to explore the idea further and hopefully we can avoid overly toxic framings of the issue. Sure, it's often psychologically burdensome to look at the ways you're unprivileged, but I find it fascinating to listen to other people talk about the ways their identities intersect because it allows us a window into another world.

    EDIT: One more thought for the road - the ability to dispassionately approach a topic is likely a privilege. If someone is, say, a rape survivor they're probably not going to approach the subject of sexual assault from however a textbook or studies convey the info.... the subject is going to be invariably colored through their own experiences and emotional processing of that. In that sense, the study of philosophy - i.e. a dispassionate and objectively rational approach to the world or truth - is likely a privilege on certain topics. If your own experience with a subject is so personal and therefore emotional you're not really doing philosophy in the traditional sense, you're more like writing a memoir.
  • Judaka
    708

    I don't consider myself to be on the right. I have different opinions on different things and who I happen to agree with is not usually of interest to me.

    Privilege is not a pursuit of the truth, privilege is not a truth, it is a framing and interpretation issue. Privilege does not exist in the real world, it is something we create as a characterisation of things that exist in the real world. It is a category, a group of physical attributes or social circumstances that constitute some kind of special right or benefit.

    If we never used the word privilege in this context again, in what way would the "pursuit of truth" be hampered?

    We can analyse the effects of intelligence and attractiveness, we do, in fact, but they're separate things, nothing is really gained by throwing them into a "privileges" category. You are treating the characterisation like it's an unpleasant truth that I want to sweep under the rug but calling every desirable attribute a privilege is so far away from a "pursuit of the truth" that you're simply kidding yourself. It is a philosophical position, an insidious interpretation of desirable characteristics that I can write on and on about all of the ways in which it promotes negativity.

    I am not interested in hiding from unpleasant truths but I am also not interested in accepting unpleasant interpretations, framing or emphasises. I am sorry to rebuke you when it seems you are trying to agree with me but how can you say that categorising privileges is a pursuit of the truth?
  • BitconnectCarlos
    561


    Privilege is not a pursuit of the truth, privilege is not a truth, it is a framing and interpretation issue. Privilege does not exist in the real world, it is something we create as a characterisation of things that exist in the real world. It is a category, a group of physical attributes or social circumstances that constitute some kind of special right or benefit.Judaka

    All I mean by privilege is something that is an unearned advantage in some regard. The central idea behind it is that it's unearned - some have it, some don't.

    We can analyse the effects of intelligence and attractiveness, we do, in fact, but they're separate things, nothing is really gained by throwing them into a "privileges" category.Judaka

    All privilege is about is recognizing unearned advantages. A beautiful model likely put in a ton of work to become a model - dieting, fasting, working out, surgeries, etc. etc. but the fact of the matter is none of this would have really mattered if she had been born with vastly different genetics or she had a terrible skin condition or was raised poor and couldn't get proper nutrition which had long lasting impacts. Where the model is now (with her incredible beauty) may have been years of hard work, but it seems dishonest to me to completely remove luck from the equation. I'm not saying everything is a privilege, I'm just asking you to acknowledge the things behind success or better treatment which are outside of our control.

    People aren't just different - they're different in ways that clearly beneficial to some group and not beneficial to another. That's the point behind privilege. The context often matters, though.

    Intelligence and beauty are the result of both hard work but also nature favoring you in some way. Money doesn't hurt either.

    I am sorry to rebuke you when it seems you are trying to agree with me but how can you say that categorising privileges is a pursuit of the truth?Judaka

    It's fine, I'm not demanding that you agree with me. I hope I've made my stance a little clearer with this post. If you don't like the word "privilege" you can just use "unearned advantage."
  • Asif
    208
    Intelligence and beauty are not unearned privileges!
    Intelligence and Beauty are Innate essential talents of human beings.
    You cannot not Express your Intelligence because others are less intelligent or ugly. Some people can work for ever at basketball and will never be decent. Others can pick up a ball and master the basics very quick. You cannot eliminate these innate differences and its foolish to legislate or pontificate this as some unearned privilege.
    Inequality of Wealth is the problem,and this is caused by coercive govt and capitalism. Politicians want you to focus on this nonsense so you bicker and virtue signal,whilst ignoring the cause of inequality,human greed.
  • Judaka
    708

    I'm not saying everything is a privilege, I'm just asking you to acknowledge the things behind success or better treatment which are outside of our control.BitconnectCarlos

    You are totally missing the point, @Asif shows he is not missing the point and countered your characterisation with a characterisation of his own. You, on the other hand, are trying to make this into a truth issue. You're explaining to me that people are born with differences and we can rank these differences by how advantageous they seem like I'm trying to argue against that.

    I have told you, this is not an issue about what the truth is, it's an issue of framing and interpretation. Just like Banno, you want to validate the framing by the fact that what you're saying is true but that's not actually a justification that explains why you choose this framing over the others... because there are many options and none of them are disputing the facts.

    Again, technically speaking, white privilege isn't saying anything untrue - the statistics back up most of the claims being made. How we look at attractiveness and intelligence is changed when we describe it or even refer to it as an "unearned advantage" and in this way your framing becomes a philosophical position.

    All that is clear to me is that you don't realise that and you believe you are kind of just stating facts when you're not. You're simply showing that you cannot tell the difference between facts and characterisations, interpretations and framing.
  • Asif
    208
    @Judaka It is annoying when people refer to facts but then extrapolate some political point as if the fact and the political interpretation are correlated,which they are not. A similiar thing is done with "statistics."
    I feel a lot of errors and sleights of hand are due to folks implicitly thinking we are all blank slates and that with some "social engineering "everyone will be on a level playing field. Talent cannot be manufactured.
    And unearned privilege comes from the ultra rich. Which is a product of ruthless elite capitalism.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    561
    I have told you, this is not an issue about what the truth is, it's an issue of framing and interpretation.Judaka

    Do you have an alternative framing that you'd like to present?

    How we look at attractiveness and intelligence is changed when we describe it or even refer to it as an "unearned advantage"Judaka

    I'm not saying that beauty or intelligence is entirely privilege, but there's a part of it that is.
  • fdrake
    4k
    Again, technically speaking, white privilege isn't saying anything untrue - the statistics back up most of the claims being made. How we look at attractiveness and intelligence is changed when we describe it or even refer to it as an "unearned advantage" and in this way your framing becomes a philosophical position.Judaka

    Ultimately this means that there can be no sufficient evidence for any "philosophical position" to be true. Which is plausible, considering reasoning is fallible. If there's a strict distinction between facts and interpretations thereof, anyway. If the distinction is relaxed; as it behaves in practice; there are more and less reasonable things to conclude from the same evidence. And whether any particular claim is more or less reasonable given evidence depends on the claim and the evidence.

    As a generic condition of reasoning it applies regardless of political opinion, and it is very disingenuous that you selectively reference one type of opinion haver whenever you bring it up.
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