My Reality Check 1- On Privilege
How I realised I am rich, privileged and I know nothing about my country
I was just doing some research and I started talking with a friend of mine who who actually does social work at the grassroot level unlike me who expects change in the world with the verbal dialogues and eloquent speeches I make.
When I actually grasped the fact of this matter, reality hit me. My work was always supposed to be beyond this reality. Yet I consume the resources of this very reality and my carbon footprint leaves a mark on this planet that I consume and exploit and yet I convince myself that things are abundant and I must only think abundance and acknowledging the dire social needs of people would make me poverty conscious and drain my money or so I was indoctrinated.
I woke up when I read these facts my friend presented to me.( you can verify them on google too)
1.population of India today as on 2020 is 138 crores (4 times that of USA ‘s population though our land mass is 3 times smaller than USA )
2.If you can read this English message, and if you can also speak English you belong to the top 9% of India.
3.If you earn over 10usd /day (760 inr) , ie over inr 2.5 lacs per year, you are in the top 6% of Indian population.
4.If you have booked a domestic flight in the last 1 year you are in thr top 5% of Indian population And if you have ever purchased anything online, you belong to the top 4% If you have a credit card you belong to the top 3% of India.
5.If you went to an English medium school you belong to the top 1.8% cream of India.
What does all of this mean? It means that if you feel that you do not belong to the same class as your food delivery guy, you are super rich! And id like us to have a reality check and know that we are privileged , and we are rich.
(middle class is a lie. If you fall into any of the above statistics you are rich)
I realized this, We are the rich privileged section of the Indian society. We truly have nothing to complain about. Most of the goods and services that are profitable are designed by companies to truly target this top 5% of the Indian population which is a huge 6.9million. But what happens in the process is that the real issues of the remaining 95% (137 crore Indian lives) are not spoken about because these are not the target audience for capitalistic consumerism based business models or companies.
As we live the life of the top 10% we are surrounded by media, adds, videos, all designed to portray a virtual world designed to target this audience. What’s the problem? The problem is that we get insulated from the lives and problems of the remaining 95% of india. We are excluded from them. We live in a bubble and we think real problems are power cuts, having to wear a mask, having to save up money for the next big event, GST, clientele, work pressure, break ups, lack of profile matches on tinder, marriage problems, relationship problems, body figure, obesity, credit card bills, poor wifi, traffic jams, mobile bills, competition, fear of missing out on the next trend, not having the latest smart phone, not getting a suitable job, missing a promotion, not getting good marks, university admission, rejections, tax filing, accounting, being unable to travel, nepotism, favoritism, having the luxury to feel bored etc (By all means I do not trivialize the above problems. I only discovered that the above problems are not relevant for 95% population and their issues are totally different)
What are real issues? What are real problems? What is required actually for my country? What’s actually required for the world and the ecology of the planet?
Coming up soon in my next write up I am compiling as I learn, research and discuss with social workers.
Thank you for reading and giving this a thought
Dr. Sanjeev Gratitude to my friend who actually cares for social work and helped me have this reality check.