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White Privilege
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White Privilege:

 1176 Black Humor, Fri, 24th Feb '12 10:41:14 PM from Zombie City
ARGH board ate my post. Of course this would be the one time I forgot to copy it into notepad.

edited 24th Feb '12 10:41:23 PM by BlackHumor

I'm convinced that our modern day analogues to ancient scholars are comedians. -0dd1
increasing welfare and education spending, giving special funding to schools in areas with a large population of poor minorities

If we could do this,

What do you mean IF? There's no reason that any nation CAN'T do this, except that a majority of those who live well above the poverty line would prefer to spend their money on themselves rather than pay it in taxes to a government that will spend it on those living near or below it.

"Job creators" are not "wealth creators." They make opportunities for wealth, sure, but it's the job WORKERS who actually CREATE the wealth.

Anyway, staying on-topic, my point is that using the term "white privilege" encourages those with proportionally more power to their voices to use them to increase compassion and justice, and support improved opportunities for everyone.

  • impish grin* yay Notepad! ;)

edited to add a return that went missin.

edited 25th Feb '12 1:13:04 AM by Clicketykeys

NCC - 1701
And may ask how we're supposed to get to that post-racial society if we're using skin color to determine motive?
It was an honor
 1179 Loid, Sat, 25th Feb '12 8:35:58 AM from Eastern Standard Time
Well, we need to actually have racial equality first.
"Dr. Strangeloid, or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Cleanlink" - thespacephantom
@Clicketykeys: That's what I meant. If we could change the perception of those below the poverty line, then we could redirect funds their way (short of executive or legislative fiat, but that'll never happen in the United States). So we could do it, but we're not. And That's Terrible. sad

And it follows, since we're not doing such things, then yes, we need affirmative action.
 1181 Polarstern, Sun, 26th Feb '12 12:34:21 PM from United States
Instead of racial equality, I say we of course prop up the education system and the social reforms for more class equality and better chance your hard work will pay off for you regardless of your skin tone, yes. But I would prefer a push to color blindness.

As I said before, even if we can get people to look past color, there is still sexuality, religion, etc. that divides us. As much as I appreciate my coworkers not caring if I'm black, white, or green, it would be nice to not be "Oh, that's the homosexual doctor". I'm not flaming down the halls, so what does it matter?

A true cross cultural education from a younger age will help in consolidating our society into just fellow citizens while still allowing for expressions of personal identity and heritage but without labeling us or restricting us to be just that both internally and externally.

To slightly necro this thread and bring back an earlier topic of conversation about what people lucky enough not to be disenfranchised can do, I bring this post from a related SA thread on privilege in gaming:

As others have said, there is nothing wrong with being a straight white male, and while the responses to this have been good (recognize your privilege, mostly), I'd like to add some specific things you can do to take your understanding to the next level.

First, understand that you are not being persecuted. No one is trying to make you feel guilty. In other words, this whole conversation is not about you - it's about the less privileged. It is sorta admirable to throw yourself into it and say "I'll deal with this shit myself, " but realize that you have a lot to gain by letting the less privileged help you understand what you're encountering. The basic maxim here is let others talk, and learn from them. That's never wrong, and if you've been reading this thread and not shitposting (you haven't) then you're already well on your way. The less privileged don't want to shut you out, they want to expand your views, and the best way to make this happen is to listen, ask questions, and reflect.

Second, come to terms with your privilege. Accept that you are a straight white male or whatever form of privilege you have, and start to actually think about the countless tangible ways this affects your life, from being able to chat in an MMO without sexist remarks belittling you, to being able to watch movies depicting people like you (and only you) doing many things and having many goals and achieving these goals in varied ways, to not having to take precautions for fear of being raped. Privilege comes in many forms, and the more you recognize it, the more you will understand just how lucky you are, and by extension how unlucky the less privileged are.

Third, turn your privilege into a tool to help the underprivileged. Decide not to see yet another summer blockbuster that features no women in non-objectified roles; instead, go see a movie that tells a woman's story for once, if you can find one that doesn't revolve around men (rom coms are out). Choose not to tacitly accept others' racist, sexist, homophobic, exclusionary language, and strike it from your own vocabulary. Make it clear that gay jokes and rape jokes and sexist behavior are unacceptable around you. Explain to your friends and family that this is important to you, it is important that we actually think really hard about how these aspects of our lives, though subtle, are indicative of greater forces. Privilege is a clue to who has power and options and who doesn't. There are myriad ways you can use your privilege, and one that is constant: use your privilege to re-shape what is acceptable and what isn't. Do it calmly, do it honestly.

Fourth, use your allies. That's anyone who wants to end systems of privilege that inherently malign some and exalt others, by the way. That's most of this thread, and most people, I find, if you have an honest conversation with them. You can't change systems on your own, and no one should have to deal with this shit alone.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, let the less privileged lead. That's what this is all about, and why it's so important to have allies. I promise no one will exclude you from conversations and efforts at change if you approach with this sort of reflective mentality.

Now, I'm not straight, white, male, a native English speaker, or middle-class, so I don't know how to take this and if it presumes too much or not. I think it's a fine idea. Thoughts?
Well some of the stuff is probably a lot more effort than is really required, yes, the discussion about white privilege to me has always been about getting everyone up to par to enjoy the same social environment.

 1184 Grain, Sat, 28th Apr '12 9:40:12 PM from South Northwest Earth
Only One Avatar
[up][up]I liked it a lot. This person clearly has experience in teaching people about privilege; this list covers most of the bases. I especially appreciated the last one; we can go hundreds of years back and see how well intentioned people unwittingly reproduced their privileges through activism; the narratives of Frederick Douglass come to mind.

The one thing that didn't gel with me was: "this whole conversation is not about you - it's about the less privileged." I get what this person means here; I've heard the "it's not about you" statement in similar contexts. However, because I like to emphasize the fact that kyriarchy affects everyone, I wouldn't have used a statement that diverts attention from half of the equation.

edited 28th Apr '12 9:40:28 PM by Grain

Hey, gorgeous
I think that anyone trying to convince me to feel guilty about gay jokes, rape jokes, and seeing movies with female eye candy in them should find a new hobby.
Memento Mori.

That entire speech specifically stated that it was not about making straight, white, middle-class men guilty, it was not even about them at all.


Sure, but the point of that statement was not "white people are irrelevant", it was to get across that, contrary to what many white people seem to believe, helping the underpriveleged doesn't mean oppressing the (currently) priveleged, in this case white people, it just means they won't be priveleged anymore.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:10:38 PM by stripesthezebra

Raven Wilder
To repeat my comments from way back when, I think "privilege" is a very poor choice of words here. When you call something a privilege, you imply that it's something people have the right to take away from you, and probably that they should take it away from you if you haven't done anything to earn it.

I mean, I've never been raped, while many other people have, but what do you think the response would be if went on TV to say, "Not being raped isn't a right; it's a privilege"?

edited 28th Apr '12 11:47:28 PM by RavenWilder

"It takes an idiot to do cool things, that's why it's cool" - Haruhara Haruko
Hey, gorgeous
It's difficult to believe that an idea centered completely around the social status of a particular group is in some way "not about" them. It seems that the entire piece has to do with the privilege of white males and how they need to modify their behavior to appease others. There's no sense of the word "about" I can think of in which that post isn't entirely about white males. A better way of putting it would be "don't take it personally that we resent you, " because that's the sentiment the post seems to carry.

In any case, it's really a bit astigmatic to say that the post isn't a guilt trip, otherwise why would it advocate all of this political correctness? If I had nothing to feel guilty about, why wouldn't I crack whatever joke or watch whatever movie I damn well please? It makes no sense to say "we don't want to make you feel bad about your behavior, but please modify it to our liking." Well, why modify it if I have nothing to feel bad about? Unless the piece really does intend to argue that "we view white privilege and the movement against it as equally valid morally, and so we offer you these polite suggestions of behavior modification in the spirit of not condemning white privilege at all, " there's at least an implicit claim of moral superiorty here. It might not be a guilt trip, but when there's smoke, there's generally fire.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:34:07 PM by Sarkastique

Memento Mori.
 1189 Inverurie Jones, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:35:23 PM from Station 78 Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
Meh. Hard work and cunning got my ancestors into a position where their descendents would be well off. I'm not ever going to feel guilty about that. Dear me, no; I'm going to keep working at it so that my descendents are well off. If other people don't work as hard or as well and their descendents are not as well off, does that mean mine should feel guilty for being 'privileged'? Of course not.

It just means that it sucks to be those peoples' descendents.

Work hard, fight hard and you, too, can be 'privileged'.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:41:05 PM by InverurieJones

Winter is Coming

I don't always do stuff, but when I do, it's freakin' awesome.

 1190 Loni Jay, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:40:40 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
The point is "Don't feel bad about having privilege, because you didn't choose to have it". That doesn't mean that common decency shouldn't direct you to modify your behaviour now that you know you have it.

You don't have to accept that a situation is your fault before you can decide to take action to change it.
Be not afraid...
 1191 Inverurie Jones, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:42:24 PM from Station 78 Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
I don't believe what I have is 'privilege'. It's my birthright, handed to me by ancestors who made it for me. I shall pass the same or better onto my kids.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:42:50 PM by InverurieJones

Winter is Coming

I don't always do stuff, but when I do, it's freakin' awesome.

 1192 Loni Jay, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:45:31 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Oh really? I hope you're only planning to have sons, then, because it is impossible for you to pass male privilege on to your daughters.
Be not afraid...
 1193 setnakhte, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:46:22 PM from inside your closet
That's terrifying.
Your privilege, in this case, comes from the color of your skin: which I highly doubt is because of your ancestors' "hard work".
"Roll for whores."
 1194 Inverurie Jones, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:47:30 PM from Station 78 Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
[up][up]Heheh. 'Male privilege'.

I sometimes forget that most of you only live on the internet.

[up] S Kin colour? No. From being a native of a very prosperous, industrious nation where most people just happen to be white? Of course.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:49:00 PM by InverurieJones

Winter is Coming

I don't always do stuff, but when I do, it's freakin' awesome.

 1195 setnakhte, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:48:26 PM from inside your closet
That's terrifying.
And I sometimes forget that you live in a delusional fantasy-land. Seriously, you don't believe that men are favored by society?
"Roll for whores."
 1196 Inverurie Jones, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:49:24 PM from Station 78 Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
Not particularly, not here at least. Can't speak for (and don't care about) things in the US, of course.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:49:56 PM by InverurieJones

Winter is Coming

I don't always do stuff, but when I do, it's freakin' awesome.

 1197 setnakhte, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:50:14 PM from inside your closet
That's terrifying.
And where, exactly, is this non-sexist utopia you call "here"?
"Roll for whores."
 1198 Inverurie Jones, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:51:05 PM from Station 78 Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
The distinctly sexist, women-have-it-too-easy, nation of Scotland.

edited 28th Apr '12 11:51:29 PM by InverurieJones

Winter is Coming

I don't always do stuff, but when I do, it's freakin' awesome.

 1199 Loni Jay, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:54:17 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Really? So there isn't a huge difference in the way men and women are treated by your films, with men in the action lead roles and the women in damsel-in-distress or prize roles?

You worry about being raped when you walk in a bad area after dark? You have to be concerned about your appearance just as much as women do?

Your leadership roles are split equally between men and women?

People try to protect you all the time, even from things you don't particularly want to be sheltered from, while they urge your siblings out into the world?
Be not afraid...
 1200 setnakhte, Sat, 28th Apr '12 11:55:25 PM from inside your closet
That's terrifying.
Hm, funny. I just looked up the names of the people in your government. Most of them are male. But I'm sure that's just a co-incidence, right?
"Roll for whores."
Total posts: 1,657
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