Here the problem with his lesson on the “privilege of education”: his analogy assumes that one goes straight from poverty into the upper echelons of society. The only ways in which this happens are if the subject either wins the lottery, or inherits a massive, unexpected fortune from a previously unknown extremely wealthy distant relative. He completely ignores the idea that one can move up in society gradually by bettering one’s self through education and work.
Check out this great infographic about education spending in the world.
According to the argument of “check your privilege,” we are victims of our circumstances, to be acted upon, not to act for ourselves. This ideology purports that one who is born into poverty will remain in poverty because the “system” is stacked against him. He will not have the opportunities or materials needed to achieve success. By that logic, people like Dr. Ben Carson, Oprah Winfrey, President Obama, Dave Ramsey, and Robert Kiyosaki should not have become the men and women they are today. They should never have seen the success they have experienced. Ben Carson was raised in the inner-city of Detroit, Oprah Winfrey was born to a 14-year old mother, and spent much of her youth in juvenile detention for her activities before becoming a 14-year old mother herself. Dave Ramsey made a great deal of money in real estate as a young man, but before he was 30, he lost everything due to his loans all being called in at once. Robert Kiyosaki was the son of an educator in Hawaii who, like Dave Ramsey, lost everything at a young age, and was even living out of his car.
Ben Carson’s mother made him read voraciously at a young age. When she moved to Nashville, TN to live with her father, Oprah found success in his strictly structured home. She excelled at drama and speech and even went on to receive a scholarship to Tennessee State University where she studied communications. Dave Ramsey took the lessons about money and debt that his bankruptcy taught him, and began again to build a business from a card table in his living room. Robert Kiyosaki learned lessons of wealth from his best friend’s father.
The common thread is a combination of hard work, endurance, and education. Ben Carson read books from the library. Dave Ramsey and Robert Kiyosaki both received a hard education from tremendous failure. Oprah received a more standard education. These people all defied what the social justice champions would have you believe with the phrase “check your privilege”. Is it easier to see success when you know what it looks like? Absolutely. Dave Ramsey is always telling his audience that their first million will be the hardest to make.
Education and a willingness to work hard are they master keys to unlocking success. Education can come from anywhere, but a willingness to work hard can only come from you. No one else can make you work hard, though that won’t stop your employer from trying. You have to decide to receive an education. You have to decide you are willing to work as hard as possible to make your success a reality. While our cultural legacies have an impact on our natural proclivities, ultimately the responsibility for your success rests alone with you.
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