An interesting phenomenon in a discussion I was lurking in elsewhere (and which I've seen more than once). People are debating a social issue. One side claims the other arguments stems from a place of privilege (which it may or may not, depending on the case), and then the argument devolves in two ways: 1) The individuals opposing the privilege argument claim that there's either no such thing or it is a non-issue; and 2) The individuals making the privilege argument assume that pointing out the privilege proves their point and no further debate is necessary. It seems to me both sides fall short here. On point 1, privilege exists in various forms across society. Arguing that it doesn't seems nonsensical to me. On point 2, pointing out privilege as a substantive argument (i.e. just asserting the other party is privileged instead of arguing the merits of their point) is essentially an ad hominem argument, and thus a logical fallacy. The fact that an argument is made by someone who has privilege doesn't make their argument inherently right or wrong, any more than an argument is made inherently right or wrong when someone who is not privileged makes it. At the same time, the lack of self-reflection by the privileged party, to realize that privilege may be influencing their viewpoint, is a failure to consider all of the data available. Ultimately, I think it is worthwhile to examine how privilege or lack of it influences our viewpoints, while at the same time realizing that the arguments have to stand or fall on their own merits, and the privilege or lack or privilege of the person making the argument doesn't, in and of itself, lend support to or detract from the merits. Make sense?