this is most likely the last time I'll bother to read anything of yours Noah, that's more than 2 paragraphs long. So, let's have at it, shall we?
Having status and feeling good about oneself in this culture is largely relative, with resulting in a hyper competition for rank
I am motivated to 'feel good about' myself simply because of my nature. My status is life is well below that of a lot of people I know, and that doesn't make me feel back. When I think about success, it's in relation to what I feel is a success to my life on a personal level, not in relation to what I've seen as evidence of success in the lives of other people.
" It is not that I must succeed, it's that others must fail".
Because I have a knowledge (albeit not extensive) of notable Africans, I know of Hannibal. This is his view - not the view of everyone, and I doubt is the view that many who 'succeed' in life are taking. Not the 'reasoning' of their succeeding.
At that instant, your first thought is likely to be that you have failed and, consequently, not likely feeling very good about yourself. However, you later learn that your 65% was the highest score of the class and miraculously
. you know feel better, even though your absolute performance is the same. Why? The reason being is that much of the way we feel about ourselves is due to our relative rank when juxtaposed with others. Had you scored 100 on the exam, your initial reaction would be a good feeling. However, if you then learned that everyone scored 100, and then your good feeling would likely be reduced.
I get a yucky feeling when I do bad on a test no matter HOW many people did or did not do bad and the opposite is true when I do well. My gut feeling is that if you do bad or well on a test, your feeling about that is based on how well you know you could have done and other personal issues with you and the testing subject. Not "i feel good cause everybody else got failed the test worse than i did"
This is all due to the nature of seeing other humans as competition.
Uhm.....I see other humans as ........dare I say???? HUMAN
. Often times, I see them as friends and neighbors - not people I'm competing with.
The act of seeing other people struggle often makes us feel sympathy, but also fortunate or better about our lives in comparison
No, seeing people who are less fortunate than myself doesn't make me feel better (or worse) about my life. It makes me appreciate my life, certainly, for what it is and it serves to check me when I think about things that I can do when providing a future for my children.
Implicit in the social and economic hierarchy is the assumption that higher order and rank is due to superiority in effort and or intellect, in other words, working harder and smarter.
What's wrong with this??? People who work harder & smarter are of course (most of the time) on a higher level of 'success' or in society. If I went to a university (which btw, i did) and so did person A, why would I begrudge person A their 100,000/yr job because I didn't do what I was supposed to do while in school and have a less financially 'high end' job? Effort + Work=Success. This, of course, is not refuting the fact that some people are where there are because nepotism (and I know black people who've benefitted from nepotism also).
Thus, if one is not a member of the disadvantaged group, they are by default, a member of the advantaged and thus benefit.
How does this jibe with your whole AA thread? You basically say that black people deserve Affirmative Action (see how I did that in less than 10 paragraphs??? it can be done Noah) anyway. That puts us all inthe 'disadvantaged' group, yet here you say we don't benefit from anything, because we're not part of the advantaged'. Doesn't Affirmative Action give us an advantage? That's what it' supposed to do, right?
Now, I have to go home and take care of my motherly & wifely duties. I'll finish my comments later this evening. Be looking Noah, alright?