Blindbeader wrote an excellent peace critiquing the use of privilege by blind people, which is definitely worth a read, especially if you consider yourself a part of what’s known as the disabled rights movement. I agree completely with what she’s saying, but for me, the post brings to mind a few other points. First, that we all have privilege of some kind, and second, while we should be careful about letting our own allow us to forget the lack of it by others, I think we need to look at how we encourage others to “check theirs”, as it were.

I’ve never been a fan of the phrase, “Check your privilege,” not because I don’t think all of us need to be aware of how our upbringing, the environment we were raised in and live in, or the advantages we have in life can’t influence how we perceive others’ situations, but because of what it implies. To me, it implies that the person that phrase is being directed at has never looked outside their own bubble to consider what the speaker of that phrase may be going through. In some cases, I’m sure that’s true. After all, if we were all masters of empathy, the world wouldn’t be in the shape it’s in. But sometimes when we’re advocating, our self-righteousness gets in the way, and we mistake it for righteousness instead. I think we all should take a step back from time to time and look in the mirror. None of us can be perfect, but I believe if we displayed a little more empathy when advocating for our favorite cause, whatever that is, we’d get a lot more done with a lot less rancor attached. And we might even end up with a better society in the process.

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