Privilege Vs Right
“Scratch a pessimist and you find often a defender of privilege.”
- William Beveridge
As tempting as it is to talk about Healthcare Reform I am writing about this for myself, I would like to look back and this post years from now and see if I still have the same ideas. Even though I do work for the insurance industry, and worked for hospitals before. I had the opportunity to learn a lot about at least the money side of things, and still think I am not qualified to really inform anyone about this topic. To me a lot of this debate comes from a simple difference in the way we think about things being a privilege or a right.
Lets start out by defining those two words that are often misunderstood by most people;
Right – a moral, ethical, or legal principle considered as an underlying cause of truth, justice, morality, or ethics.
Privilege – the principle or condition of enjoying special rights or immunities.
A privilege is something that is not enjoyed by all, it is only a “special right” to some. Kind of like on the scripts of the 80s shows like the A-Team where someone has diplomatic immunity, that is a privilege. Knowledge is not a privilege, it should be a right, but for some time now it has taken a back seat to fantasy.
Back in the middle ages things seemed a little less obscure, everyone knew what was going on in the castle and well eventually it lead to French monarchs having their heads roll down a hill. Today we pay lots of taxes, sometimes even more (amount wise) than countries that have better social services, and everyone is scared of spending money but forget how much we spend for war.
The reality of the situation is that most of us don’t know how “the system” works. We don’t know if someone living with government help gets 800 bucks a week per child so they can be in daycare. We don’t know if someone is on their 7th child and they just named them Paycheck. Our taxes pay for all of those things and we just sit back and hope for oversight, for someone to make sure that programs that are supposed to be helping the people that needed, don’t abuse it.
Again it is all about knowledge and the right to have it, not the privilege to know. We don’t know what the situation is for the people currently abusing “the system.” We don’t know how many people take more pennies than they leave behind at the tray, we just simply don’t have the knowledge. The moment that someone wants to know more, control more, have more transparency people start yelling about privacy.
It would be great to be self sufficient, it would be amazing to not need roads and infrastructure. If you want that, an commune is waiting for you just around the cornfield.
To enjoy being part of a society we have to get used to its rules. We have to respect the fact that we are part of a system that is not perfect but will not change without action and involvement. Most important, it will not be changed without knowledge… and be very careful where you acquire that knowledge from.
I have been wrong in the past and supported at least mentally a president on a decision before. I might be wrong this time around but I am an optimistic and want things to work out not just for me but for everyone that is part of this great nation. As tempting as it is I will not even go into details about how some of this is life and death to a lot of people and some even close to me.
So if you believe that only some people deserve to know, and most of us cannot handle the truth, then move along and continue to be a pessimist about not just the country but about life because I find a lot of truth on the quote that I opened up with. Also click on the link and read some of the other quotes by that dude… look at the dates of his life and his mini bio, it is very interesting how history works sometimes.