When I disagree with Dr. Jordan Peterson, that is not to discount all the other good work he does.
It is only a specific, isolated thing, here or there, that catches my attention. Tiny details are very important, and connect into other aspects of their work. Though, that is not to say that the entirety of their work is wrong, or useless.
In the Zizek-Peterson debate, Peterson made a statement that struck a chord with me. He said (paraphrased) that those at the bottom of any hierarchy face eradication. He referenced Matthew 13:12 of The Bible:
“For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.” He said that this is a major problem.-Matthew 13:12
I argue that it is not.
It is natural that those at the bottom of any hierarchy face enslavement, eradication, or other perils. What other incentive would we have to climb, otherwise? What reason would we have to store food if the winter wouldn’t claim it?
That is the nature of cycles that the pre-Christian ancients (such as the Norse) understood. The ever-changing seasons of an ever-revolving earth.
That is why we should strive to self-develop, evolve, innovate, and invent.
In Peterson’s defense, he references this point as well. He did say that if he makes a mistake, the forces of his own hierarchy (in the context of capitalism) will punish him. Thus, there are mistakes he can’t allow himself to make, lest he fall. So, that incentivizes him to demonstrate the maximum amount of wisdom in any given action that he can.
Where I disagree with Peterson is in a very tiny margin between his pathos and logos. Peterson has a natural bias (as do we all). He is a trained, decorated, seasoned psychologist. His mission is to alleviate people’s suffering, for the maximum amount of people he can.
He admits that he too has faced his share of suffering, feelings of brokenness. Of being at the bottom of different hierarchies. Of having to repair and develop himself.
Where I disagree with him is in that we should seek a solution for this.
We should not.
Even he’s admitted, many times in different ways and videos, that life is suffering. Or, at least, suffering is a natural part of life.
So, to what degree should one seek to alleviate suffering, and why?
At what point are people going against the will of nature? Or our own nature?
It is a problem for those experiencing that struggle, of being at the bottom of their respective hierarchies, however natural it may be. This is what many African-Americans don’t understand about their own suffering, when one applies the same logic to socioeconomics.
Though, I mean not only to speak about African-Americans; the logic applies to anyone in varying contexts.
It is unthinkable to most African-Americans that their socioeconomic suffering is a natural part of being at the bottom of any hierarchy. The coming winter seeks to eradicate their positions even further with the rise of AI and the long-term consequences of space exploration.
The thought that the suffering required to climb it is even more unfathomable.
When asked why not evolve, the common response you’ll find from many of them is a counter-question: “Why should we evolve? Why should we change?”
…well, that’s why. Is it whites in the country they are truly asking to change?
…or, is it mother nature herself they ask to change, without realizing it?
It is merely summer; yet, they lack food. It is not even fall; yet, winter brings heavy snow.