November 15, 2013

The Able-Bodied and Neurotypical Privilege Checklist

I recently read "The Male Privilege Checklist" over at Amptoons, which is "an unabashed imitation of an article by Peggy McIntosh". As Ampersand says in the article, McIntosh points out that men tend to be unaware of their own privileges as men. Much as Amp made an imitation of McIntosh's work, I'm doing an imitation of his, but geared towards neurotypical and able-bodied privilege.

I'm aware that I've likely left things out that others would have included, but these are just what I've experienced, either personally or from being around others with disabilities. If there are any that you would have included, feel free to leave a comment!

1: The odds of being hired for a job are probably in my favour when competing with somebody with a disability or of a different neurology.

2: If I'm hired for the job, it has nothing to do with the company doing so in order to give the appearance of being non-discriminatory.

3: I can be confident that my coworkers don't think I got hired for the reason above.

4: If I fail at my job, it doesn't give a look of incompetency on the capabilities of everybody with a similar disability or neurology.

5: I don't have to fear losing my job or friends if my disability or neurology is revealed.

6: If I'm careless with my driving, it won't be attributed to my having a disability or being of a different neurology.

7: If I do the same task as somebody with a disability, I'll probably look better doing it.

8: I don't have to put up with receiving fake or forced praise from people who are trying too hard to be polite.

9: The odds of me being excluded from a group as a child are much lower.

10: The odds of me having a hard time making friends is lower.

11: The odds of me being bullied is lower.

12: If I am bullied, people won't blame it on my disability or my neurology. As in, "It wouldn't have happened if you weren't..."

13: I'm not considered more likely to commit a crime.

14: I'm not considered more likely to be dangerous.

15: I don't have to be concerned that people will think I'm weird because of my body movements or any sounds I may make.

16: My elected representatives are mostly people who don't have disabilities that severely affect their lives.

17: If I had any specialised early childhood education, it probably wasn't called therapy or treatment.

18: I don't have to worry about institutions claiming to be fighting for me, but are really just trying to get rid of, or "cure", what makes me, me.

19: I don't have to search for forms of media, like television or movies, that portray me in a positive or non-stereotypical way.

20: I can turn on the television or look at a magazine and find people like myself greatly represented.

21: If I'm careless with finances, it won't be automatically assumed that it's because of my disability or my neurology.

22: I can speak to a large audience without putting my disability or neurology on trial

23: I don't have to try and look, sound, or act like a "normal" person.

24: Religious quacks won't think that I'm really just possessed or that I need more vitamins.

25: I don't lose sleep because of Jenny McCarthy.

26: I have less of a chance of having to deal with people parking in a car spot that they shouldn't be parking in.

27: If I use services that assist me in living, I'll still be seen as independent.

28: My partner is not seen as a predator.

29: If I have a talent, I won't be called an idiot savant.

30: If I have trouble understanding somebody with a disability or of a different neurology, then it isn't seen as my fault, but theirs.

31: I can be loud without people automatically assuming I'm about to have a fit.

32: People won't ask me if I need help getting back into my car, which would be weird for me to have gone somewhere in a car if I couldn't get back into it.

33: My doctor is less likely to dismiss a medical problem as just part of my disability.

34: Me being called "retarded" is probably more of a joke about something embarrassing I did rather than people actually thinking I'm mentally retarded.

35: People won't assume that I'm literally mentally retarded just because I have a disability.

36: I have the privilege of being unaware of my privilege.

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author Tiger Craven About Tiger
Tiger is a 22 year old college student, activist, and professional living in the Saint Louis metro area. When he's not being apathetic to the idea of God or writing about atheism, he is serving a presidential term for a mental health organisation and a board membership of another, does public speaking about mental illness and disability, and is a photographer and a bassist.