Today’s greatest privilege: denying one’s personal contribution to pollution, depletion, plunder, and imperialism

June 26, 2024 by Joshua
in Awareness, Nonjudgment

Liberals talk a lot about privilege. Conservatives, libertarians, and other political groups have their problems facing their contribution to our environmental problems, but liberals contribute as much. Their denial is through the roof.

In particular, they throw around the term ‘privilege’ like it was candy. I think they think they’re silencing the people they accuse of it, but in a way the other person deserves, doesn’t realize, and benefits from owning up to.


My point is not to accuse back but to invite people to try taking personal responsibility for the effects of their actions on others, especially innocent people. I predict people will find the initial discomfort of facing one’s internal conflicts worth the uncomfortable emotions it causes to connect to them. I’ve learned that when people insult, they’re usually talking about themselves, and calling someone privileged is usually a form of insult.

They talk and act like they’re the good guys because they see government as the one to solve the problems. People who identify as green or environmental pollute as much as others.

What greater privilege can you think of than polluting, depleting, plundering, and paying for corporations and government to do more of it, then claiming you aren’t doing it?

Recall, nine million people a year die from breathing polluted air. That number equals the total number of slaves in the U.S. over centuries, as I wrote in Magnitude of suffering and death then and now. Even poor people in the U.S. drive and buy tons of plastic stuff. American environmentalists contribute to our environmental problems as much as anyone, but few others deny their contribution as much. That’s privilege.

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