So this is nifty. For those of you who are too lazy to click links, it’s a challenge to explain something complicated using only the top thousand words in the English language. So of course, me being me, I immediately started explaining social-justice-y things with it.
Privilege: Some groups of people get bad things other groups of people don’t get. Men who want to marry men or women who want to marry women can’t marry them; some people think black men will hurt them even though the black men are nice; some people won’t listen to people who have brains that work different when the people who have brains that work different say something is hurting them.
Because some people have never had to deal with these bad things, they don’t know that other people have to until they have a chance to learn that. Even if they learn it they still might not know all about what it’s like to live with the bad things, so it is a good idea to listen to the people who have to deal with bad things.
Ally: Some people think it is bad that some groups of people have bad things happen to them, even though they are not part of the group that has bad things happen to them.
It is good to not want bad things to happen to people. But sometimes people think it makes them very very very good to think that bad things shouldn’t happen to people and to not do bad things. They are sad when people don’t tell them that they’re very very very good all the time. But really trying to stop bad things is just normal good and people should not tell you you are good all the time just because you are not bad.
Patriarchy: Many people think that men should tell women what to do without women getting a say and that women should try to make men happy. They think that women who don’t make men happy, or make men happy in the wrong ways, are bad women, and that men who can’t or don’t want to lead are bad men. The idea that men should lead women makes lots of bad things happen to women and men.
Because most people for a very long time thought men should lead women, there are lots of things that people believe and do that help the idea that men should lead women still live, even if the people don’t mean to do that.
Othering: Some people think of other people as being very very very different because they are part of a different group. They might think that people from a different group don’t think the way they do or feel the way they do. They might believe that other people will do bad things for no reason, just because they’re part of that group. They might think it’s hard or not possible to understand someone who’s a part of that group.
But all people think and feel in ways that are more like each other than not like each other. When people do bad things, they do them for reasons that make sense to them. And people can understand other people most of the time if they really try. It makes people sad when you think of them as not thinking or feeling the way that both you and they do, just because they’re part of a different group.
Objectification: Sometimes people act like other people are things they can use, rather than people. They might not recognize that other people feel things too and that it is bad to hurt them. Or they might know that other people can make them happy but not believe that those people might want to do things other than make them happy.
Some groups of people more often have people act like they are things. People who bring food to people’s tables are often yelled at when the food is bad, even though it is not their fault and yelling at people makes them sad. Some people act like it is wrong for women not to be pretty; because they like to look at pretty women, they think, all women should want to make them happy by being pretty.
Internalization: Sometimes if you act like someone is a thing or very very very different from you, the person will start to believe that they are a thing or very very very different from you. Sometimes if you hurt people, they will start to believe that being hurt is a good thing or that they should be hurt.
There are lots of ways people can act if they believe bad things about themselves. If you act like a kind of person is a thing, they might think they are only good if they are good at being a thing: because so many people act like women must be pretty, some women think they are only good if they are pretty. If you hurt someone, they might think they should be hurt because they’re bad: some men who want to fuck men believe God hates them because they want to fuck men.
Some people can become mean if they believe these things. It is bad to be mean and hurt people, even if you’re doing it because you believe something bad about yourself. But it is still sad that people believe bad things about themselves.
Cis: Most people think that people are either men or women. They look at someone and decide “you are a man!” or “you are a woman!” Even when someone is a little baby, they decide that the person is a man or a woman. But some people that people think are men are women, and some people that people think are women are men. Some people are even both men and women, or not men and not women. If when you were a baby people thought you were a man, and you are a man, you are ‘cis’; the same thing is true if they thought you were a woman and you are a woman.
Tone Argument: Sometimes we say or do things that hurt people without meaning to. If you have been hurting someone, they will often get mad at you for hurting them, even if you did not mean to. It hurts when people are mad at you, even if it is because you hurt them.
Some people think that if other people get mad at them for saying or doing something, it means that the thing they said or did was not bad. They think, “I have been hurt, and they have been hurt, so it is even.” Sometimes they don’t realize that the other people have been hurt at all, and just think the other people are getting mad for no reason. But just because it hurts you when other people are mad at you does not mean they are wrong to be mad or that they have nothing to be mad about.