White privilege is the latest hysteria on the left. There are movements to combat it, classes at universities to help white students recognize it and a growing number of people claiming it’s the reason many, particularly minorities, don’t get ahead. While privilege exists, and is definitely cause for some having advantages, there is a flaw in the argument that white privilege is the overwhelming problem in America.
Focusing on white privilege wastes time and effort. As I state in my book, Logic: The Truth About Blacks and the Republican Party, most people are selfish. We tend to focus on ourselves and those in our circle. So, nepotism is a natural progression. Someone hiring friends and family is not white privilege just because the person doing it happens to be white. Most would do the same thing given the opportunity. Companies literally pay their employees to bring in candidates when they need help; those employees are sure to recruit their friends.
The left then says that white privilege is more about how minorities are treated in certain situations. The problem with this is that it implies that people’s reactions and behaviors are solely based on skin color. They cite things like being followed in a store, being judged by one’s clothing or manner of speech, and seeing more people who look like you in roles of authority as examples. There’s no doubt that these things disproportionately affect blacks negatively, but the fact that whites don’t experience these in the same way is more a matter of correlation rather than causation.
Let’s take the first example, being followed in a store. I first experienced that in high school and, like many, my initial reaction was anger. I thought it was racist for shopkeepers to follow the black kids around the store. But as I thought about it more, I came to a different conclusion. I couldn’t logically conclude that these businessmen decided to come to a predominately black neighborhood to provide a necessary service primarily to have the opportunity to discriminate. There had to be a better reason. A small percentage of them may have been racists, but in most cases they were store owners trying to protect their investments. I eventually realized they were following me, and boys like me, because we looked like the people who were stealing from their stores. My anger began to shift to the people who were creating that view of me. Many of those stores eventually closed due to their excessive losses. This left our neighborhood with fewer resources.
This holds for many of the other situations lazily deemed ‘privilege’. They talk about speech. As an immigrant I’m very close to told me, “They teach us English in school!” This was in response to someone saying she didn’t sound like she was from her country of origin. The same goes for black Americans. The same language taught to whites is taught to blacks in the inner city. The difference is it’s long been considered uncool and 'white' to speak English properly.
In addition to behavioral things, they site stats that are cause for alarm. The fact that unemployment, incarceration rates and household incomes are skewed against blacks. These are true and need to be addressed but are not due to the privilege of others. No amount of diversity training or white privilege courses will prevent blacks from being incarcerated. As far as unemployment and income goes, education is the key to improving this; the quality of which is not affected by the privilege of whites. The social justice crew doesn’t want to talk about real privilege. Here are actual types of privilege that greatly increase your odds of being successful:
• ‘Two parent home privilege’ – Children raised with both parents in the home
• ‘Weekly religious service privilege’ – Those who attend regular religious services
• ‘No child before marriage privilege’ – Those who wait until marriage to have children
The truth is that even if you give them all of their arguments, ‘white privilege’ is inaccurate. Privilege indicates a special right or advantage. These are things that whites are less likely to experience, rather than, what they are entitled to. Perhaps they should address the causes of the discrepancies instead of focusing on placing blame on others for the existence of them.
C. Douglas Love