My family has a running gag- my grandmother mentions how much she suffered during her life. And even though she talks about it nearly every time we see her, she is not wrong. She definitely did suffer. She immigrated to a new country that she knew absolutely nothing about, from post World War II, poverty-stricken Italy, to a very dangerous South Jamaica Queens, while pregnant. And oh yeah, she was nineteen at the time with an eighth grade education. She suffered since the get-go.
My grandmother is one out of the billions of people in the world whose lives have been the furthest from smooth sailing.
Everyone has their own struggles that should never be ignored or devalued. My grandmothers struggle is different from mine, which is different from my parents, which is different from people abroad. Not one is more or less important than the other, and all deserve our respect and effort to try to stop.
But that leads to another question that I think is not only the fundamental root of politics, but the plight of the human experience as a whole.
Even if one suffers, and that suffering can be awful, traumatic, devastating, why should that suffering continue onto others?
My point being- my grandmother did not have an easy life as an immigrant. Does that mean immigrants today should suffer equally as much?
In my honest, humble opinion, the answer is of course not.
My parents and I pay outrageous tuition. However, we still believe that public universities should be tuition-free. We may have suffered the difficulty of paying astronomical tuition-bills, but that does not mean we want others to have to pay such prices (even though we are blessed to not struggle to pay college tuition, it still is beyond costly).
I will be the absolute first to admit; I am really in no position to talk about this. I have lived an incredibly privileged life, and I am beyond grateful. That does not mean I haven’t struggled, or suffered, in any way.
I want less suffering for me people, no matter if I have endured a similar type of anguish or not.