By Guest Contributor Sparky, cross-posted from Womanist Musings
One of the many many many not-very-coded speeches privileged people like to give is the one on “low expectations.” You know the one: the one that says that welfare, affirmative action, any kind of accommodation, anti-discrimination rules, or anything else to try and help marginalised people is somehow patronising and demeaning because it “expects too little” of marginalised people. Because, you know, it expects marginalised people to need help (completely missing the many ways marginalised people are hindered and the fact that society is already geared to help the privileged).
Like many of the arguments of the oppressor, I’ve been dismissing it.
But I think I was wrong. I think that, yes, there are people out there who are labouring under the soft tyranny of low expectations. There are people who achieve so little because so little is expected for them.
I’m talking, of course, about people who are clinging to their comfortable blanket of privilege: those folks who have taught us time and again to expect the least from them. And the least is what we get. Read the Post Privilege And Low Expectations