PRIVILEGE: THE CULTURE

by LJ Frank

The velvet rope of privilege is drawn between the haves and have nots in visible and invisible forms, acts and the ink on finely written documents. Privilege has a persuasive ring to it. 

Hereditary privilege like a child of advantage was and is birthed and raised at a cost, much in terms of coins and blood. Royalty was and is achieved through a lust and greed for power sanctified through religious ritual, sophisticated ceremony, and the façade of fashion. Power and control over others entices the wanting heart.  The desire for greater power and wealth is also the seed of revolt for which battles and wars have been endlessly fought while the words freedom and liberty are disingenuously bandied around but as to whose freedom and whose liberty are we talking about?

And there exists celebrity privilege, papal privilege, corporate privilege, judicial privilege, academia privilege, political privilege, wealth privilege…ad nauseum.  And yet…outside the doors to these privileges?

How do we define destitute in body and or mind? Homeless is an event in an individual’s life, it is not the person but it has much to do with dignity and self-worth. There are places in the world where it is a felony to be homeless. Why is it a crime to strive to exist without an actual home? How do we define humane? Privilege is an exclusive term.

There is money to be accumulated by lobbyists and contractors seeking to build more prisons for those in debt. Why does a man or woman lust to create a class of debtors? Is it all about control and wealth? Was the author of Ecclesiastes, right? Vanity is the noxious root embedded in the soil of privilege

There is little privilege in the turmoil and violence of being without. How does one survive without livable income where two jobs are not enough and where there’s little affordable healthy food, no clean drinking water, no emotional or physical support – where is the Reason for Being as Jacques Ellul once wrote and titled his book. There’s also the poverty of the mind where the person becomes enthralled in the privileges advertised in the media. Credit is big business but where is the justice in selling privileges, merely to consume?

Justice is hardly ever fair to all participants, and equality is an ideal ever unfulfilled.  Be thankful for that which you have is nice to say in the comfort of a warm home and on a full stomach and in an otherwise stable mind and heart.

Our bodies and minds are different as is our genes and the environs in which we develop, perceive, and interpret ourselves; and privilege is a human invention and still one must ask –  at what cost to civilization?