Is Safety a Privilege?
Can you show affection to your partner in any public place without fear of harm?
Can you practice your faith at your religious institution without fear of harm?
Can you wear clothing that you feel expresses yourself without fear of harm?
Can you get pulled over for a minor offense without fear of harm?
Can you walk to your car at night without fear of harm?
If you can say yes to one or more of these questions, you experience the (relative) privilege of safety.
Is safety a PRIVILEGE?
It is for some people.
I know people don't like the word, but privilege isn't something that you should feel bad about. It's simply the recognition that others experience or don't experience something different than you based solely on inherent qualities or circumstances outside their control.
Privilege can come from race, culture, religion, nationality, gender identity, sexuality, ability, age, health, size, socioeconomics, or a multitude of other factors.
It exists on a spectrum---which means you can have lots of privileges in various areas while still experiencing a lack of privilege in others.
And while a lack of privilege can affect many things, such as career success, safety is one that I am very passionate about because I perceive it as a fundamental right of existence---and I see many people who are experiencing a risk to their safety, based solely on identity.
We all deserve to be safe walking around in life- whether going to school, going to work, taking public transportation, riding or driving our vehicles, practicing our faith, gathering in our communities...you know...just minding our own f**king business. Yeah...all of it.
That's why I am still talking about things like privilege and other issues that might make people uncomfortable.
Because even discomfort, in this context, is a privilege. It means you are alive....which feels more and more like a privilege everyday.