That’s right… White Male Privilege.
Huh? How am I a victim of white male privilege?
A couple of years ago, I was visiting my son in Augusta, Ga, and we went to a great restaurant for dinner. I’m talking really good! Now Augusta is a sleepy southern town, and it was 95 degrees outside, so I dressed appropriately: dressy shorts, Tommy Bahama shirt, and my trusty Reef flip-flops. At 8:30 PM, my similarly dressed son and I show up at the Frog Hollow Tavern for dinner. The hostess greeted us, looked us up and down, and explained we could get a drink while we wait for a table. One 25-minute wait and 2 drinks later, we were seated in a back room. As we sat, the hostess said, “Gentleman, next time, please, no open-toe shoes.” OMG! I’ve finally experienced gender bias discrimination!!!
Women can wear sandals; men can’t. The horror!
Of course, I jest, but this event did get me thinking.
As an old white guy, I have become accustomed to my white privilege. Like many of my peers, I take my white privilege for granted.
- I’ve never been paid less than my gender counterparts
- I’ve never felt that my female co-workers were leering at me
- No one at work has ever made a sexually explicit comment directed at me
- I’ve never been stopped by police for walking late at night in a nice neighborhood…. finding me guilty of walking while white
- I’ve never been stopped in my car for no reason… or for driving while white
- I’ve never been asked to step outside the car during a traffic stop
- I’ve never been frisked or handcuffed
- I have walked away with warnings numerous times instead of tickets while stopped for speeding
- I’ve never not been hired because of the color of my skin or for wearing a hajib
- I’ve never been afraid that when my boys left our home at night that they would be the victims of police violence
The only discrimination I’ve ever experienced as an old privileged white dude, besides the open-toed shoe thing?
- I’ve had people not hire me because I wasn’t qualified – discrimination against unqualified candidates
- I’ve had people fire me because I screwed up – discrimination against boneheads
- I’ve had people dislike me because I’m cranky – discrimination against mean people
All justifiable discrimination.
I’m a victim of white male privilege, and I’m aware of the advantages that afford me. Being a white male is like being a top airline frequent flier. I get to jump in front of the line to board the plane of life, I get the bigger seats and free checked luggage. The difference is that instead of having to fly 100K miles on the airline of life, I just had to be born white with an XY chromosome.
Those alt-right, white supremacist losers who have been protesting their little statue removals, complaining they are an injured discriminated minority? Screw those guys! They’re discriminated against because they’re assholes, or stupid, or uneducated. They are judged by their character and not the color of their skin. Discrimination is not a bad thing when applied correctly. Blind people shouldn’t be airline pilots, high school dropouts shouldn’t be doctors, and racist friggin assholes shouldn’t be employed.
It’s time that women and people of color get to jump us in that airline boarding process of life. I don’t expect to make a difference with this post except to acknowledge that I know I was born to privilege and perhaps to get discriminated against by bigots for acknowledging the truth.
I believe that Black Lives Matter, and yes, I believe that all lives matter. I’m like a firefighter that believes that all homes matter, but the homes that are burning deserve my support and attention.
I’m a victim of white male privilege.
Here’s a great Video explaining privilege:
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