Friday, October 23, 2009

Identifying How Dominance Works- Adultism

In order to understand how power works, it's important to understand that you can expect to see it EVERYWHERE. That's why we say that Dominance is pervasive.

The easiest example to understand (by even simply reflecting on your OWN life as a young person) is to understand ADULTISM.

We are probably familiar with the idea of Ageism, the discrimination of someone based on their advanced age. Adultism works the other way: it's the infantilization, marginalization, prejudice that you face as a result of being young or just youngER. (Here is an attempt to understand how adultism can be addressed in the context of parenting.)

The very word "Adolescent" itself is only a very recent 19th Century concept. Today, we alternatively label them as "minor"-- not empowered to make their own decisions. We might see this in attitudes such as, "We thought it in your best interest," effectively taking away the agency of someone based on youth.

In what ways were you stifled in your youth, and How did it contribute to a slave mentality, preventing the development of critical thinking, moral and ethical decision-making, and empowered action?

Yet when society breaks down, we fail in our responsibility to "each one teach one" and parenting fails, there is a push to sentence youths as adults. This is the ironic flipside of Adultism. We will infantilize you (thus sabotaging your own empowerment, agency and autonomy), until you you enter the legal system, where we'll suddenly try you as an adult.

Don't expect Dominance to be logical, consistent, or reasonable, but DO expect it to be hysterical, contradictory, and irrational.

Dominance is so pervasive and ubiquitous, it is like WATER TO A FISH, and as a result can seem at times invisible to us, as we are just SWIMMING in conditions of oppression.

--The Brain Demon

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