How to Start a Race Riot Without Really Trying, 5/6/2016
Damn it, Deon, are you serious? A serious article? We had just gotten used to your bitchy whiny poetry, and your bitchy whiny drivel!
Let me preface this by saying I’m a United States Citizen. I celebrate a variety of different cultures and cultural events, and I enjoy traditions and cultures worldwide. I go looking for reasons to celebrate, and mostly, to find and try to cook recipes from other cultures to enjoy, because mostly I like food. And I like people who like good food. I’m not looking for trouble, but I’m sick of being baited and hated and blamed for shit that’s not my fault. As a US Citizen, I’m afforded the right to speak my mind AND to face any consequences said free speech gets me into. The same law of natural consequence, or legal consequence, should apply to anyone else who shoots off their mouth or does whatever shit they choose to do. It also affords me other rights extended to any other US Citizen. Morally, I don’t believe one race, or one family, or one gender, or one religion, should be treated favorably over another, even if the race or family of beneficiaries is mine. I think, like a wise forefather of the country wrote (whether he believed or not is immaterial to me, I like the concept and believe it fully.) :
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
I’d go further than that and say that all of humankind are created equal, thus including women in my declaration. But sure, I’ll take it if I’m supposed to have it. Where’s this alleged white privilege I’m supposed to have been blessed with? Here are some signs to consider when pondering whether I might have white privilege:
1-After nearly 10 years on this job I’m paid lower wages than newer employees who’ve just started in this same position (so says the rumor), who are of all different ethnicities, and I can’t get a promotion although I’ve asked several times for something I’m qualified for. I’ve never slacked off working so I haven’t been fired yet. I work hard and I really don’t think my compensation is fair compared to others.
2-I’ve never been arrested because after all these years I don’t break the law, still follow the rules, listen to, respect and obey authority figures, and make myself and my intentions obvious- and I don’t own a gun. I object to those who break the rules I feel morally obligated to follow, including the laws of my state and country, and I think they should face whatever legal consequences I would face if I broke them.
3-I have a variety of friends and love them all dearly and they are from different racial heritages. Why can’t certain people who claim other racial heritages treat me like Jesus said to treat all other people? No, instead they accuse me unjustly of taking advantage of an asset I’m not even aware of. Alas, they’re not claiming it’s because I’m a Christ follower so I can’t even celebrate being discriminated against because of my religion. But, bottom line, I’m not going to befriend you or support you in your cause if you’re selfish, self-entitled, and hateful. No, fuck you if you’re like that.
4-I was taught to serve, and to believe it’s the right thing to do. But I dislike those who presumptuously either destroy, or take, from society and just expect to be treated better than anyone else. When being served, I say “thank you.” I’m humble. When serving, one never knows how it will be received but it’s nice to be treated with the same courtesy, as an equal, not disregarded or taken for granted, as if you’re so far above me that I should be in a position of servitude toward you. When serving, I’m humble. So again, fuck you if you’re presumptuous and belittling like that.
5- I was brought up to respect people, but it’s becoming obvious some of them weren’t taught to do the same for me, so they can call me all kinds of unfriendly and unflattering names but I can’t return the hatred even if I wanted to, because certain groups have the privilege of cards I don’t have in my deck, and the intimidation factor it affords them. So, fuck you if you play those cards. That includes any kind of privilege card, whether gender or race or anything else.
6-I think it’s horrible that law enforcement feel they can get away with abuse of power against anyone. You shouldn’t be arrested for driving or walking while white, or black, or asian, or hispanic, or purple, but you shouldn’t be belligerent if a nice policeman wants to ask you something. I once was pulled over by a cop at night who had a blinding flashlight and his gun out, drawn on my car, who demanded to see my hands, loudly (which were on the steering wheel). I was necessarily terrified, but calmly as I could asked if I had done something wrong, and then what he needed from me. He inspected my car for evidence of a crime someone in a similar car had committed (it was a hit and run) and seeing that my bumper was intact, as the other car had been damaged, he let me continue home. So, similarly, even if the policeman is belligerent, indeed especially so, one should give a gentle answer, because he’s the one with the gun and nightstick. I didn’t run away, I didn’t pull any unnecessary shit, I didn’t bait him to be more angry or afraid. I believe he was afraid of me, so I didn’t give him any reason to be afraid, because fear causes muscle spasms and I don’t want to be the unfortunate victim of a trigger finger spasm, however unintentional it may be. Or of a taser spasm, or of a nightstick spasm. But if you abuse “[your] just powers” without “the consent of the governed,” fuck you. (and, please don’t shoot!)
7-I don’t hate you if your heritage or birth are different from mine, I hate you if you’re an ass hole. Which means, those people who really DO get ahead because of heritage or birth, get a double portion of my hatred. Like the rich kids who get away with all kinds of shit that the rest of us would get arrested for. Like the rich bankers who commit fraud and theft and get away with that shit. Like the families of people who get promotions without merit, simply because they’re part of the family, or the popular people who might not do shit but they schmooze well, or lie well, or kiss ass well, and so get where they want to get, while stepping on my hard working shoulders to get there.
Cheryl Harris may have experienced a life without power, money or influence at some point, but instead of making her loving and supportive of ALL others, it has made her her own kind of racist: bitter and hateful and selfish enough to insinuate I have some kind of privilege even though I’m not from a privileged class of power, money or influence. “The wages of whiteness are available to all whites, regardless of class position — even to those whites who are without power, money, or influence. Whiteness, the characteristic that distinguishes them from blacks, serves as compensation even to those who lack material wealth. It is the relative political advantages extended to whites, rather than actual economic gains, that are crucial to white workers.”
In the law of Israel, given to that nation after they had just been set free from slavery, Moses wrote that people should treat each other nicely, including so-called “enemies.” Even if it’s your enemy’s property you’ve discovered, you should return it whole, and if your enemy is struggling, you should help them. Proverbs says you should be a blessing to everyone, even your enemies, and not gloat when they fall into misfortune. In Jesus’ teachings in Matthew 5 he said “Love your enemies and pray for those who accuse you unjustly.” So I guess i have to pray for you if you’re a self entitled, selfish ass hole like this. Paul, in Galatians 6 says “Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.” THIS is what has happened to Ms Harris and a host of others like her- she has become JUST like her perceived enemies, bestowing a whole list of unwritten rules for how she thinks a certain part of the population should be treated (better than any other) just because they are her favorite.
In Galatians 3, there’s a verse about privilege:
28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Boom. You can’t claim Jew privilege, or Gentile privilege (that’s everyone who isn’t Jewish, so a blanket on all races), or slave privilege, or free privilege, or male privilege, or female privilege, or any other privilege. Paul means we’re supposed to treat everyone the same, equal, not some being somehow entitled to be treated as if they were better than equal.
In conclusion, as an obviously privileged white American man despite my lack of “power, money, or influence,” I want to ask, and get your honest (really honest) response:
But let’s presume Ms. Harris is right. If so, where the fuck are my alleged political advantages, compensations, and so on, seeing as how I have not been blessed with power, money, or influence? And what’s the actual “wages” in terms of a cash value payable to me, of that white privilege annuity? On second thought, I’ll trade them all in for their cash value, because obviously, fuck privilege, what good is that to me? Where’s the bank that hands that “material wealth” in exchange for “relative…advantages” out? I’ve got a few relatives I could trade in while we’re at it. While you’re at it, you can take all of the politicians that don’t represent me properly too. But I’m not related to any of them, or maybe I’d have some real privilege.