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Polyamory is not a privilege, but is skepticism? April 18, 2012

Posted by shaunphilly in Skepticism and atheism.
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I wrote a long post two nights ago, in response to a post over at polytical.com which started some conversation.  Today, I want to clarify a distinction that may help illuminate my central point.

There are social power dynamics which make achieving certain things more or less difficult in our culture.  Those with more privilege have an easier time surmounting aspects of our culture than others.  Some people avoid emotional, economic, etc hardships which makes certain things easier to achieve.

In other words, privilege exists.

For some people to arrive at polyamory, they need to overcome such hardships.  For others, such struggle is not necessary.  Thus, for many people to arrive at polyamory (or atheism for that matter), they need to take advantage of privilege.  For others, lack of privilege can still lead one to polyamory.

The conclusions I draw from this are that there are privileged ways to get to polyamory, and for many people to get to it they need to take advantage of privilege, but polyamory is not a privilege per se.

Privilege will certaintly help to practice polyamory, but to simply be polyamorous is not a privilege.

Whether I could have gotten where I am today without my privilege of gender, race, economic status (although I have been quite poor myself at one time, I grw up without want), and education is unknowable.  But that some people could have seems incontrovertable to me.

This brings to mind the question of whether skepticism is a tool held through privilege or not.  Because yes, some people arrive at true opinions and healthy lifestyles without rational scrutiny, but is skepticism itself possible without privilege?

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