Privilege – White Privilege – Its a “Thing”
This is a complex subject to tackle. This article works hard to do so at risk of great controversy, and risk of turning off my readers on the other side of this complex issue to ever reading anything I write. Of course the death of so many young black Americans at hand of citizens (Zimmerman) without prosecution, and at the hands of so many cops who also evade prosecution (Garner “I can’t breathe” in New York) has put this all in mind first and foremost.
Did you or kids or Grand kids ever break the law?
If you are a human with compassion think about the white kids that shoplift, are drunken disorderly occasionally and even do drugs. You may have, your kids or grand kids may have. But it did not result in death at the hands of the cops, and hand wringing that “they were criminals and deserved it”. These are the same cops that apprehended, not killed more dangerous people.
If you think you are safe because your kids or you follow the law the scary site
will open your eyes those same cops escape prosecution when they shoot sleeping children (not kidding here), the elderly, mentally challenged people, and raid the wrong house and kill or maim non criminals in raids to the wrong address. Cop privilege (the ability to kill and maim without prosecution by incompetent cops who did not assess risk and f’ed up) is REAL and we should not be silent about it.
My conclusions after much research
When I was in my teens and 20’s I believed:
- Reverse racism existed is what I believed in my teens and 20s. I now recant my opinion on that. Reverse racism is the belief that any minority that is given an opportunity takes it away from a white person who deserved it instead.
- White privilege was not a thing is what I believed in my teens and 20s. I now have seen it all first hand and I was wrong to believe that.
- The effects of slavery and oppression was in the past and cannot affect the present is what I believed in my teens and 20s. The fact is as white people our relatives had advantages that ripple down into present is what I learned.
- The effects of prejudice do not ripple into nor affect the present is what I believed in my teens and 20s. I have seen and read enough by experts to know better now. Do you think the fact that we gave away land to all White male settlers and no women or blacks or freed slaves did not start a pattern of wealth distribution and inheritance that affected their ancestors?
Now I believe all the evidence I have read leads me to this conclusion
- White privilege exists.
- Cop privilege is even scarier than that. It thrives in people not believing how bad it is if it did not happen to them or someone they know, and in believing a cops job is so dangerous they are allowed to make mistakes and kill. If a cop makes the kind of mistakes that kill innocent Americans or Americans committing minor crimes because they do not know how to use a taser, call for backup, etc. police work is not for them.
- White male privilege is powerful as well. (If you are white and male and think it does not read http://occupywallstreet.net/story/explaining-white-privilege-broke-white-person with an open mind).
- Rich <any non-white> privilege is next in the power hierarchy.
- Rich white male privilege trumps all. Think Dick Cheney, Donald Trump, etc.
- The media portrays black people, poor people, rape victims differently than more privileged people.
- Slavery, Prejudice and oppression was recent that some people still practice it without realizing it.
- Slavery, Prejudice and oppression was not experienced by many white people’s ancestors who got one time bonuses that were never then available to minority’s ancestors.
I f you want to know why I changed my opinion, keep reading. If your mind is closed, do not bother.
A basic primer by Illustration
Here are some cartoons I gathered that cover this topic quickly.
First of all the media uses different language to describe black and white people. It is quite upsetting.
If you are white your relatives benefited greatly from things that helped your family get way ahead:
People get very worked up by images that may not reflect reality:
Reverse racism is often a scapegoat but the facts do not support it:
A misguided belief that a few victories means all Racism is over.
The reality is that ignorant people still use racist terms to demean a black president and his wife. People who showed no such major disrespect to white presidents they disliked.
Poor black people are still treated very badly in a way that middle class, upper middle class and white people cannot imagine by cops and courts/judges.
The bogus idea that white people are so law abiding that is why they never get stopped, frisked, shot, choked, jailed, etc.
“Race cards” people play that are nonsense.
I hope this artwork gets your brain in the right mindset to process some new viewpoints.
Code Words and Bogus Arguments that sneak in
Since we cannot say certain words we invent words that change the tenor of the discussion and bias it.
- We call black people “thugs”, “criminals”, “felons”, “drug addicts”, “alcoholics” when white people (even serial killers and richer white people) get characterized as “had minor brushes with the law”, “problems with the police”, “convicted of ___ crime” and had “substance abuse problems” and “drinking issues”.
- We use those code words with poor people, female rape victims and it helps establish the idea that whomever was on the other side of the dispute is the better more just person. “Gold digger”, “Fame Seeker”,
- Bogus arguments like “black on black crime” is the real problem. It is as bogus as “Indian nations were always warring with each other”. The British Empire was not dispensing hugs and chocolates to conquer most of the world. Genghis Khan was hardly a benevolent kind leader.
- Black people that riot are ALL looters and criminals. This despite the fact that there have been absolutely silly riots that degenerated to some theft and property damage with no provocative deaths or escapes from justice.
More Reading Online
I recommend the following articles that changed my mind once I opened my mind to them.
- http://www.vulture.com/2014/11/chris-rock-frank-rich-in-conversation.html – A really majorly insightful article.
- http://www.dailydot.com/opinion/reverse-racism-doesnt-exist/ – Very insightful.
- http://www.dailydot.com/opinion/ferguson-michael-brown-post-racial-myth/ – Sad but true.
- On the riots, how about rather than shaming and mocking, you think about how decades and centuries of injustice and stories from great grandparents and grandparents and parents about how we savagely treated black people and not issues some bogus “things are better but not entirely fixed” and think that is OK. No Americans should have to grow up in the reality young black people face. Or our constitution, bill of rights and courts are fricking useless for THEM.
- Cop Block shows how the cops overstep power hurting and killing Americans not because their job is hard but because the bad ones know they will face no penalties or jail time. And if you are white be glad all you son’s “boy will be boys” shoplifting, drug usage, stupid drunk moments, and toy guns didn’t get them gun downed a bunch of smug white (and even some black folks) act like the punishment watched the crime when they get KILLED rather than apprehended and jailed.
My First Hand Experiences with Racism
I am 50 and reached my conclusions based on my life experience, and also read quite a bit. 28 book shelves of books (although now I read all new books on a Kindle Paper White). In the neighborhoods I grew up (middle class suburbs in Maryland) they were mostly white, with a very few black families in the county, most middle class or upper middle class. People in the surrounding area receiving government assistance are all white – a lot of them could work but do not.
- I saw racism in how my late GF’s (she died at 35 in her sleep) Jamaican family was treated. My GF’s father was a upper middle class accountant in his early 50’s whose wife also worked 12+ hour days and pursued advanced degrees that were living in an upper middle class neighborhood. He was a super nice Jehovah’s witness who immigrated here legally and they worked very hard to put his children into best schools. When his car broke down a few miles from his home in the nice neighborhood he lived and he and his young daughter (this happened when my GF was in her teens, I knew her in early 30s) knocked on a white neighbor’s door for help in his suit and tie. He was greeted with a shotgun when the door opened. His daughter never forgot that. A white guy in shirt and tie with teenage daughter would not be greeted like that.
- I have seen racism first hand in North Carolina (a place where I visit my relatives several times a year). No black families live in the small town in NC I visited because this century. Those that moved in briefly had crosses burned on their lawns. I heard those stories being told with pride at the local filling station 🙁
- We have a lot of racists in my neighborhood who say some really horrible things about the black kids that walk to school through our neighborhood. Older white people many on disability for over a decade or 2 yet have very active hobbies like 12 hour days Deer Hunting yet can’t work, and even younger white people are on welfare.The older white people who can work do so “off the books” to continue collecting entitlements.
- I hire people off Craigslist to help me with a project clearing the woods on the lot next to my house and cleaning out an old basement. Only twice was I stolen from – both were white guys one stole $1,500+ of my tools. The White guys who came to work for me tended to arrive late, leave early and interrupt work to talk on their cell phone and had ‘entitled’ attitudes so were hard to supervise. The black guys I hired showed up on time and early, worked harder, required less supervision, and worked longer hours and were more reliable. When I changed my subsequent ads to say “because a person I hired stole from me everyone who works for me on Craigslist must show ID first – Drivers License and SSN before starting work” I got an email from a Craigslist user saying “That is why I shouldn’t hire niggers”.
These are a small sampling from my life. I will add more.
Please leave any comments about these topics that will help improve this article and answer your questions on this complex topic.