Wednesday, September 17, 2008

White privilege

A great rant:
White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you or your parents, because “every family has challenges,” even as black and Latino families with similar “challenges” are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay.

White privilege is when you can call yourself a “fuckin’ redneck,” like Bristol Palin’s boyfriend does, and talk about how if anyone messes with you, you'll “kick their fuckin' ass,” and talk about how you like to “shoot shit” for fun, and still be viewed as a responsible, all-American boy (and a great son-in-law to be) rather than a thug.

White privilege is when you can attend four different colleges in six years like Sarah Palin did (one of which you basically failed out of, then returned to after making up some coursework at a community college), and no one questions your intelligence or commitment to achievement, whereas a person of color who did this would be viewed as unfit for college, and probably someone who only got in in the first place because of affirmative action.
Via Coates, who sums it up:
The basic point here, I think, is that racism allows white people to be mediocre.


Blogger grishnash said...

While I think the point of this essay is mostly correct, I have to wonder if these are necessarily the best examples in this case because race and politics are so intertwined in this. While it's very obviously true, I think, that Sarah Palin would be up for a lot more criticism if black, I also think that a liberal-leaning politician, even if white, would be criticised by the right wing for many of the same things mentioned here. To some extent everyone more easily forgives the faults of the members of their preferred affiliation, whether race, political party, religion, or whatever.

10:05 AM, September 17, 2008  

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