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Resilience

Ketan Anjaria

So there’s been a couple of discussions about resilience and it’s caused a lot of discussion and arguments.

First of all let me state, the economics of the modern world are truly fucked. The rich are getting richer, income inequality is higher than it’s ever been and since the pandemic started it’s been the worst unemployment in the history of the US.

Companies are making higher profits than ever and the average worker hasn’t seen pay rise in any comparable way. Many people are truly hurting in ways we haven’t seen before. Poverty is endemic.

Because I talk to people who have lost jobs every day, I am deeply aware of the struggles they face. I hear every single day from people who are having a hard time and often face real issues like loss of income, loss of housing and loss of health.

I am pro-union, pro wealth tax, anti-billionaire and pro-worker. I have been a union steward and part of the fight for $15 minimum wage movement. We have to fight these battles every single day to make sure all workers are paid fairly and higher. Being aware of these issues is deeply important and I support everyone trying to make ends meet.

I always support people doing what they need to support themselves. Sometimes that means doing work you don’t love or getting paid less than you’d like right now.

But the whole notion of a worker’s movement is predicated on a hope for a better future. We can’t strive for a better future if we don’t talk about it. We can’t understand what rights we have (including the right to say no singularly and collectively) if we don’t discuss these things openly.

I understand many of you are hurting. That pains me deeply. But when community members are sharing resources and perspectives that can provide light, I think it’s much more helpful to listen and find growth. If we attack the very people who are on our side, we are just dividing ourselves while the rich grow richer.

There can definitely be toxic positivity. Not being aware or talking about the issues people face or steamrolling over real issues is something to be concerned. But if you are coming on HireClub to attack the very same folks who are likely in similar boats as you, you aren’t helping anyone.

I know it feels good to vent. It feels good to call out privileges. Those are important feelings as well. But as I hope we all know, there’s lots of other feelings we can talk about.

What I want to share with you all is that regardless of how deeply terrible and unfair the economy is, what choice do we have to up but to rise up?

One politically and at the poles. We should fight for the change we want to see. We should fight for equal and higher pay. We should fight for leaders who believe in democracy and fairness and equity.

Two we should fight negativity and self-destruction. If we embrace a pessimistic mindset, the rich have won. If we attack each other’s single cookie while the rich steal the whole damn table, we have lost.

Three, I also believe in intersectionality. Frankly the most toxic comments we see are from men. Women in our community raise each other up and provide support and confidence. More than I’d like to see, men continue to berate others and insert their beliefs in harsh ways.

First all of men, we need to be ok to talk about our pain. We are not socialized to cry or talk about hurt. Much of men’s negative behavior comes from toxic masculinity and bottled up pain. It’s more than welcome to discuss your pain or hurt or needs.

Second of all men, hold on your comments if you have nothing helpful to add. Honestly it’s tiring to get reports from the women in our community that yet another man is attacking a women’s viewpoint. You think you are being smart or helpful but honestly you are either mansplaining at best and being hurtful and rude and condescending at worst. It’s not really that hard to be kind on the internet. You think you are fighting the struggles you believe in and you might be, but you are likely also attacking a woman on the internet on your way. Think about how you are writing, is it coming off kind and helpful or just another dude inserting himself on the internet?

While it doesn’t happen often in HireClub, I’ve noticed it happening more than I’d like lately. In the new few weeks we are going to be holding talks on diversity and inclusion and specifically sexism to help educate us all but especially the men (including myself!) on what we need to learn about how we take up and insert space.


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