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To be privileged

published: 2010-10-15

“I spoke with Bhutanya a lot back then,” said Karmiet.
Bhutanya and Anne. Two girls who blocked the stairways at school kissing.

“I never knew you were friends?”I said.
“What Bhutanya did back then was brave. Her parents were really strict, Muslim.”
How come Karmiet knew these things about Bhutanya and I didn’t? And how come I never fully grasped the jokes Abdul made to Karmiet, and how he said he and she would prove Jews and Muslims could live in peace together? Not that it was ever an option, simply because Abdul was unattractive. All the other things didn’t seem relevant at the time, not to me. It was not on my scope. In retrospect I realize it would be wrong to pat myself on the back for being non-judgemental. I was ignorant. I hadn’t been exposed to global conflicts the way many of my classmates had. To be open-minded and non-judgemental means to be privileged, meaning: safe. Everyone else cannot afford to be.

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