The Privilege Of Staying Out Of Politics
Politics and Activism

The Privilege Of Staying Out Of Politics

Dear people saying they are “staying out of politics” or “give him a chance” or “things aren't that bad,” here’s looking at you.

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City AM

It takes a certain kind of privilege to deny that there is a need for social justice and that there wouldn’t be a benefit from it. Just because you aren’t hungry or homeless doesn’t mean that there isn’t world hunger or a homelessness problem. Just because you personally work somewhere where men and women are paid the same doesn’t mean there isn’t a wage gap between men and women, not to mention the much bigger wage gap between white people and people of color. Just because you’ve heard that women or people of color or queer folks are treated extremely cruelly in some places doesn’t mean that the treatment to these people in our country is excusable or that these peoples’ struggles are invalid.

"I stay out of politics"

To think that you can just stay out of politics is saying that social issues don’t matter to you, and maybe they don’t seem to personally, but that doesn’t mean these aren’t important and aren’t hurting others. At some point politics affect us all. People of all different identities fill and affect our lives and it’s our responsibility to keep them here and keep them safe. When you just decide to “stay out of politics” you’re not only saying that social issues don’t matter to you, but the people in your life affected by politics, like members of oppressed groups, also don’t matter. These issues are dire for some people and could mean the difference between life and death. Members of marginalized groups don’t have the luxury to “stay out of politics.” Their lives depend on them paying attention, listening, and demanding justice where they have been wronged.

"Give him a chance"

When you say “give him a chance” you are just making excuses and trying not to acknowledge the injustice and xenophobia that he believes in and promises. “Give him a chance” is just an excuse because it’s endless. When has his chance run out? What atrocities does he have to do before his chance is considered given? “Give him a chance” can’t always be the answer and is just a lazy way to regard the issue by not subscribing to the idea that things he has done and wants to do are wrong.

"Things aren't that bad"

Things can always get better. We have come a far way in fights for equality, but there is still a long time to go. And as we’ve seen, the successes we have are reversible by people trying to take power away from others and giving more power to the elite. We don’t live in a utopia, there is always work to be done. There are always things to do to make a world that’s safe and equitable for people that are being oppressed.

Maybe you’re uninformed, maybe you don’t want to put in the effort, maybe you think the world just is the way it is, but stay involved in politics. Don't avoid it because you think it doesn't affect you, you never know when it might..

Learn about the people being affected.

Learn what you can do.

Pay attention.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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