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Thread: White privilege, white entitlement, and the 2008 elections

  1. #1
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Exclamation White privilege, white entitlement, and the 2008 elections

    For those who still canít grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for some easy-to-understand examples of it, perhaps this list will help.

    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 "fuckiní redneck," like Bristol Palinís 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.

    White privilege is when you can claim that being mayor of a town smaller than most medium-sized colleges, and then Governor of a state with about the same number of people as the lower fifth of the island of Manhattan, makes you ready to potentially be president, and people donít all piss on themselves with laughter, while being a black U.S. Senator, two-term state Senator, and constitutional law scholar, means youíre "untested."

    White privilege is being able to say that you support the words "under God" in the pledge of allegiance because "if it was good enough for the founding fathers, itís good enough for me," and not be immediately disqualified from holding office--since, after all, the pledge was written in the late 1800s and the "under God" part wasnít added until the 1950s--while believing that reading accused criminals and terrorists their rights (because, ya know, the Constitution, which you used to teach at a prestigious law school requires it), is a dangerous and silly idea only supported by mushy liberals.

    White privilege is being able to be a gun enthusiast and not make people immediately scared of you. White privilege is being able to have a husband who was a member of an extremist political party that wants your state to secede from the Union, and whose motto was "Alaska first," and no one questions your patriotism or that of your family, while if you're black and your spouse merely fails to come to a 9/11 memorial so she can be home with her kids on the first day of school, people immediately think sheís being disrespectful.

    White privilege is being able to make fun of community organizers and the work they do--like, among other things, fight for the right of women to vote, or for civil rights, or the 8-hour workday, or an end to child labor--and people think youíre being pithy and tough, but if you merely question the experience of a small town mayor and 18-month governor with no foreign policy expertise beyond a class she took in college--youíre somehow being mean, or even sexist.

    White privilege is being able to convince white women who donít even agree with you on any substantive issue to vote for you and your running mate anyway, because all of a sudden your presence on the ticket has inspired confidence in these same white women, and made them give your party a "second look."

    White privilege is being able to fire people who didnít support your political campaigns and not be accused of abusing your power or being a typical politician who engages in favoritism, while being black and merely knowing some folks from the old-line political machines in Chicago means you must be corrupt.

    White privilege is being able to attend churches over the years whose pastors say that people who voted for John Kerry or merely criticize George W. Bush are going to hell, and that the U.S. is an explicitly Christian nation and the job of Christians is to bring Christian theological principles into government, and who bring in speakers who say the conflict in the Middle East is Godís punishment on Jews for rejecting Jesus, and everyone can still think youíre just a good church-going Christian, but if youíre black and friends with a black pastor who has noted (as have Colin Powell and the U.S. Department of Defense) that terrorist attacks are often the result of U.S. foreign policy and who talks about the history of racism and its effect on black people, youíre an extremist who probably hates America.

    White privilege is not knowing what the Bush Doctrine is when asked by a reporter, and then people get angry at the reporter for asking you such a "trick question," while being black and merely refusing to give one-word answers to the queries of Bill OíReilly means youíre dodging the question, or trying to seem overly intellectual and nuanced.

    White privilege is being able to claim your experience as a POW has anything at all to do with your fitness for president, while being black and experiencing racism is, as Sarah Palin has referred to it, a "light" burden.

    And finally, white privilege is the only thing that could possibly allow someone to become president when he has voted with George W. Bush 90 percent of the time, even as unemployment is skyrocketing, people are losing their homes, inflation is rising, and the U.S. is increasingly isolated from world opinion, just because white voters arenít sure about that whole "change" thing. Ya know, itís just too vague and ill-defined, unlike, say, four more years of the same, which is very concrete and certain.

    White privilege is, in short, the problem.

    The Republic of T. ¬Ľ Digest for September 12th through September 15th
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    Excellent editorial.

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    Elite Member *DIVA!'s Avatar
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    If you're a minority and you're selected for a job over more qualified candidates you're a 'token hire.'
    If you're a conservative and you're selected for a job over more qualified candidates you're a 'game changer.'

    Black teen pregnancies? A 'crisis' in black America.
    White teen pregnancies? A 'blessed event.'

    If you grow up in Hawaii you're 'exotic.'
    Grow up in Alaska eating mooseburgers, you're the quintessential 'American story.'

    Similarly, if you name you kid Barack you're 'unpatriotic.'
    Name your kid Track, you're 'colorful.'

    If you're a Democrat and you make a VP pick without fully vetting the individual you're 'reckless.'
    A Republican who doesn't fully vet is a 'maverick.'

    If you spend 3 years as a community organizer growing your organization from a staff of 1 to 13 and your budget from $70,000 to $400,000, then become the first black President of the Harvard Law Review, create a voter registration drive that registers 150,000 new African Amercian voters, spend 12 years as a Constitutional Law professor, then spend nearly 8 more years as a State Senator representing a district with over 750,000 people, becoming chairman of the state Senate's
    Health and Human Services committee, then spend nearly 4 years in the United States Senate representing a state of nearly 13 million people, sponsoring 131 bills and serving on the Foreign Affairs, Environment and Public Works and Veteran's Affairs committees, you are woefully inexperienced.
    If you spend 4 years on the city council and 6 years as the mayor of a town with less than 7,000 people, then spend 20 months as the governor of a state with 650,000 people, then you've got the most executive experience of anyone on either ticket, are the Commander in Chief of the Alaska military and are well qualified to lead the nation should you be called upon to do so because your state is the closest state to Russia.

    If you are a Democratic male candidate who is popular with millions of people you are an 'arrogant celebrity' or
    'uppity'.
    If you are a popular republican female candidate you are 'energizing the base'.

    If you are a younger male candidate who thinks for himself and makes his own decisions you are 'presumptuous'.
    If you are an older male candidate who makes last minute decisions you refuse to explain, you are a 'shoot from the hip' maverick.

    If you manage a multi-million dollar nationwide campaign, you are an 'empty suit'.
    If you are a part time mayor of a town of 7000 people, you are an 'experienced executive'.

    If you go to a south side Chicago church, your beliefs are 'extremist'.
    If you believe in creationism and don't believe global warming is man made, you are 'strongly principled'.

    If you cheated on your first wife with a rich heiress, and left your disfigured wife and married the heiress the next month, you're
    a Christian.
    If you have been married to the same woman with whom you've been wed to for 19 years and raising 2 beautiful daughters with, you're 'risky'.

    If you're a black single mother of 4 who waits for 22 hours after her water breaks to seek medical attention, you're an irresponsible parent, endangering the life of your unborn child.
    But if you're a white married mother who waits 22 hours, you're spunky.

    If you're a 13-year-old Chelsea Clinton, the right-wing press calls you 'First dog.'
    If you're a 17-year old pregnant unwed daughter of a Republican, the right-wing press calls you 'beautiful' and 'courageous.'

    If you kill an endangered species, you're an excellent hunter.
    If you have an abortion you're not a Christian, you're a murderer (forget about it if it is the result of raped or incest.)

    If you teach abstinence only in sex education, you get teen parents.
    If you teach responsible age appropriate sex education, including the proper use of birth control, you are eroding the fiber of society.
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    Elite Member Folieadeux's Avatar
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    Wow, that was fantastic.

    I must admit I came into this thread almost doing an eyeroll because I thought it was going to be a typical 'white this and white that' rant about how hard nonwhite people have it yet here I am agreeing with every damn word written. I have just realized I have thought this way about teen pregnancy within my own community, typifying it as a cultural problem instead of a teenage one - which actually really scares me. What scares me more is that everything in the above article is true.
    ssabmud

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    Elite Member lurkur's Avatar
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    Money has a lot to do with it too, but certainly, when people first see you and make judgments about you, skin color is visible whereas bank statements are not.

    The comments on teen pregnancies, angry/machoist teenage males, and affirmative action in schools were dead on. Too many people will see a pregnant black teen and think "welfare;" see a black teen male and think "thug" (hell, they don't even have to be teens to be labeled like that); see a black student and think "affirmative action."

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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Sarah Palin's family has set a bad example in countless ways.
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

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    Elite Member Penny Lane's Avatar
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    This was an excellent editorial. Great (and more importantly--or is it scary?-- VALID) points all around. I think it's absolutely ridiculous that we throw words like progressive and change and tolerant around yet it's still the same old shit... lipstick on a pig, to quote a very "controversial" black figure.

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    Elite Member sluce's Avatar
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    I like this for the most part but wish it was comparing Obama to McCain not Palin. She is not running for President as much as the Republicans would like us to believe.

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    Elite Member Penny Lane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sluce View Post
    I like this for the most part but wish it was comparing Obama to McCain not Palin. She is not running for President as much as the Republicans would like us to believe.
    I don't think she got the memo.

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    ^I think the article is attacking Palin's speech, that had most to do with bashing Obama.

    Grim, where'd you find this article? This is an excellent read.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Good editorial. Especially the part about the teen pregnancy.

    Quote Originally Posted by sluce View Post
    I like this for the most part but wish it was comparing Obama to McCain not Palin. She is not running for President as much as the Republicans would like us to believe.
    I agree. But since McCain went out and found his own Bizarro universe version of Obama & Hillary it's become an issue.

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    To the OP, thanks for presenting that excellent article!

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    Silver Member FriendOrFoe's Avatar
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    Dumbest thing I have ever read.

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Really? Then refute it.

    Refute this, too:

    What if John McCain were a former president of the Harvard Law Review? What if Barack Obama finished fifth from the bottom of his graduating class? What if McCain were still married to the first woman he said “I do” to? What if Obama were the candidate who left his first wife after she no longer measured up to his standards?

    What if Michelle Obama were a wife who not only became addicted to pain killers, but acquired them illegally through her charitable organization? What if Cindy McCain graduated from Harvard? What if Obama were a member of the “Keating 5”? What if McCain was a charismatic, eloquent speaker?

    If these questions reflected reality, do you really believe the election numbers would be as close as they are?

    This is what racism does. It covers up, rationalizes and minimizes positive qualities in one candidate and emphasizes negative qualities in another when there is a color difference.

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    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hotncmom View Post
    Excellent editorial.
    ITA

    Quote Originally Posted by SSDiva View Post
    If you're a .....
    ITA

    What if John McCain were a former president of the Harvard Law Review? What if Barack Obama finished fifth from the bottom of his graduating class? What if McCain were still married to the first woman he said “I do” to? What if Obama were the candidate who left his first wife after she no longer measured up to his standards?

    What if Michelle Obama were a wife who not only became addicted to pain killers, but acquired them illegally through her charitable organization? What if Cindy McCain graduated from Harvard? What if Obama were a member of the “Keating 5”? What if McCain was a charismatic, eloquent speaker?

    If these questions reflected reality, do you really believe the election numbers would be as close as they are?

    This is what racism does. It covers up, rationalizes and minimizes positive qualities in one candidate and emphasizes negative qualities in another when there is a color difference.

    — Kelvin LaFond, Fort Worth
    Absolutely. Amen!
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