Posts tagged Privilege.
It’s privilege in action when you complain of attacks on your character in response to other people pointing out your attacks on their humanity.
Privilege can take many forms, and its distribution among people in a society is a complicated process. Privilege can be something as simple as being heard and taken seriously when we say something, of being served promptly and courteously in a store or restaurant, or of being free to move around or express an opinion. It can take the form of wealth or power or having other people clean up after us and take care of our needs. In every case, what makes something privilege is the unequal way in which it is distributed and the effect it has of elevating some people over others.
— Allan G. Johnson, The Gender Knot (via tabularasae)
1) Be willing to confront instances of transphobia, cissexism, cisnormativity, cis-centrism, cis privilege and other forms of destructive bias where you find them (especially when you find them within feminist, activist or queer spaces), not through “call outs” or other toxic, self-defeating or abusive strategies, but by taking the opportunity for genuine discourse.
2) Don’t take a purely passive, reactive approach. Rather than waiting for things like someone saying something overtly cissexist, or a trans person bringing up a particular concern, be willing to proactively introduce trans issues, or trans-relevant aspects of broader issues, to feminist discourse. Likewise, proactively treat possible consequences, perspectives and concerns relevant to trans people and trans experiences as being not only significant but essential to all feminist issues and conversations.
3) Don’t assume any given issue is strictly, or even primarily, relevant to cis women. All feminist concerns are also transgender concerns, and vice versa. There are no feminist dialogues in which trans voices “don’t belong”, or to which trans voices have “nothing to add”. There are nosocial issues related to gender that don’t have consequences for trans people.
4) Proactively seek out transgender voices, perspectives and input on all issues, not simply what you regard as “trans issues” or situations where the value of such perspectives is immediately obvious to you. Come to us, rather than waiting for us to come to you.
5) Don’t treat the larger social conflict of gender as being dialectic or binary in nature. Don’t assume a unidirectional model of gender-based oppression.
Alladat right there.
— Hari Kondabolu (x)
but seriously tho the word privilege came about cause people wanted a word for those advantages that didn’t imply that the person was at fault
you are at fault
if you accept ill-gotten goods your ass is at fault
even if you didn’t know the stereo was stolen, no one cares
you still have a stolen stereo in your possession
no more of this privilege shit
call it like…supremacy benefits or smth
check ur supremacy benefits; it’s like welfare for the oppressive
check ur supremacy benefits.
The media focus on student debt, on congressional battles over student loans, and the scarcity of jobs for college graduates obscures the racial and class dynamics that define America’s colleges and universities. With the public discourse surrounding the unfairness of affirmative action for Whites, the threat that Ethnic Studies represents to (White) America, and the absence of “White student unions” in college campuses, public discussions re-imagine Whiteness as precarious, and Whites as victim and at the frontlines of a changing educational landscape. Despite the daily lamenting of the state and future of America’s White students, particularly those with middle and upper-middle incomes, college campuses are still White. In fact, Whites, particularly those whose parents are part of the top 5% of the income distribution, continue to reap the benefits of privilege in (1) admittance, (2) scholarship, and (3) treatment. Let’s not get things twisted here; these colleges and universities are in America, so yes the rules of the game (racism, sexism, classism) do apply.
In 2005, less than one in eight youth from the poorest 25% of society would enroll at a 4-year college university within 2 years of high school graduation. According to Peter Schmidt, author of The Color of Money, “a rich child has about 25 times as much a chance as a poor one of someday enrolling in a college rated as highly selective or better.” Colleges’ overreliance on SAT scores, heightens cultural bias, and the unequal advantages resulting from SAT prep classes, which have proven to benefit Whites and the middle-class. In addition, because admissions give credence to a school’s reputation (which cannot be seen apart from segregation, and racial and class inequality), the rules and the game of college are set up to advantage Mitt Romney’s America: the already privileged. Worse yet, the hegemony of the narratives of meritocracy and the illusion of diversity—which Lani Guiner describes as “a leaf to camouflage privilege”—obscure the endless privileges afforded to the members of middle and upper middle class White America, before they ever step foot on a college campus.
The money is there for White students, particularly those who already have class advantages. From access to prep classes to performative enhancing drugs, from legacies to the “donation path,” America’s colleges and universities are overpopulated by Whites, by the sons and daughter’s of the elite, not because of some level of intelligence, the requisite values, or some all-powerful work ethic, but because of the power of privilege and money.
This points to a clear conclusion: because of access to money, prep classes, or mere connections, that is, because of privilege, America’s colleges and universities, particularly the elite schools, are overpopulated with White students lacking the requisite skills to succeed within these spaces. It is no wonder that America’s colleges and universities are increasingly the educational weight stations for the ill prepared and ill qualified.
While the national press and politicians lament the status and predicament facing (White) college graduates, let us not forget the broader issues at work here. It is revealing that while the face of the aggrieved student is often White, and while the narrative of the student left behind is White, they are not the faces of those students who are getting admitted to universities without “deserving” to be there. Whites are not the face of having easy access to financial aid; they are not the face of those who can afford to and are using drugs without being busted; they are not the face who pop performance enhancing pills; they are not the face of cheating scandals. Yet, instead Whiteness remains the face of victimized student who deserves to be in college, who deserves to secure the American Dream. If that is the case, I think we need to return to a basic lesson: a more accurate definition of “deserve.”
— David Leonard, “Higher Education In Mitt Romney’s America,” NewBlackMan (In Exile) 9/25/12
More generally, white privilege includes the large set of advantages and benefits inherited by each generation of those routinely defined as “white” in the social structure and processes of U.S. society. The actual white privileges, and the sense that one is entitled to them, are inseparable parts of a greater societal whole. These advantages are material, symbolic, and psychological. They infiltrate and encompass many thousands of interactions and other events played out in an individual white American’s experiences over the course of a lifetime.
Whiteness is so commonplace, so habitual, and so imbedded that it exists even where and when most whites cannot see it. Stated or unstated, it is a fundamental given of this society, as well as other Western societies. White prerogatives stem from the fact that society has, from the beginning, been structured in terms of white enrichment, white gains, and white group interests. The active or passive acceptance of this racialized system as normal has long conferred advantages for whites, even including antiracist whites seeking to eradicate racism. Today, most whites of all political persuasions will say they are opposed to racism, although a majority continue to overtly, covertly, or subtly support racist framing, practices, and institutions.
— Joe Feagin (via wretchedoftheearth)
In other words, as James Baldwin put it “To be white in America means not having to think about it.” We could say the same thing about maleness or any other basis for privilege. So strong is the sense of entitlement behind this luxury that males, whites, and others can feel put upon in the face of even the mildest invitation to pay attention to issues of privilege. “We shouldn’t have to look at this stuff,” they seem to say. “It isn’t fair.
— Allan G. Johnson (via wretchedoftheearth)