There is Privilege; But It’s Not White
by Andy Joppa
“Don’t you dare tell me my skin color holds me back. Don’t you dare tell me my skin color makes me a victim.”
Three men walk into a bar, Dwayne Johnson, Bruce Lee and Jerry Nadler. Nadler nags Bruce to the side,” Get out of my way yellow man”, and then bellies past Dwayne, “get out of my way black man.” Reaching the bar, he holds out his hand to the bartender, who happened to be a sub-continent Indian, and says, “Serve me first you idiot…as you can see, I’m white, very white, and I, therefore, have privilege; unlike my two inferiors who were lucky enough just to be with me and bask in my glorious whiteness.” After several prolonged moments of uncontrolled laughter and conspicuous guffawing, Bruce and Dwayne carry Nadler outside the bar, which was no easy task, tied him to a fire hydrant and pummeled him so badly that he could no longer wobble down the street. (I didn’t want to invoke violence but it just felt so good to write that Nadler was “pummeled”)
The moral of this story is…there’s no such thing as white privilege. Jerry Nadler had convinced himself that the distortion that he and others of the Left created, was true…and was actually trying to invoke it. Dwayne and Bruce were having no part of it, neither was the bartender who happened to be darker skinned than anyone in the room and belonged to the most economically successful group in America. Bruce came from the second most successful group and Dwayne…well Dwayne was Dwayne… but belonged to a group that had far more upper 10 percenters than their demographic proportion should have generated. Nadler was just Nadler, a gnome of a man with the personality of a sociopathic evil scorpion. Like others of his type…Jerry’s whiteness was not going to help him.
So, let’s talk about “white privilege.”
A pillar of contemporary Leftism is this notion of “white privilege.” Given that a generation of high-school and college students are being taught that a great number of “unearned privileges” accrue to white Americans, the charge of white privilege demands rational inquiry. The assertion turns out to be almost entirely meaningless. And, more significantly, it does great harm to blacks.
The concept of white privilege can’t explain why several historically marginalized groups out-perform whites today. Take Japanese Americans for example: They outperform whites by large margins in income statistics, education outcomes, test scores and incarceration rates.
Whites are far from even being the most dominantly successful group in Western society. A wealth of data shows overwhelming white underachievement relative to several minority groups among health outcomes, educational achievement, incarceration rates and economic success.
According to median household income statistics from the US Census Bureau, several minority groups substantially out-earn whites. These groups include Pakistani Americans, Lebanese Americans, South African Americans, Filipino Americans, Sri Lankan Americans and Iranian Americans (in addition to several others). Indians (my fictitious bartender above) are the highest earning ethnic group the census keeps track of, with almost double the household median income of whites.
Interestingly, several black immigrant groups such as Nigerians, Barbadians, Ghanaians and Trinidadians & Tobagonians have a median household income well above the American average. Ghanian Americans, to take one example, earn more than several specific white groups such as Dutch Americans, French Americans, Polish Americans, British Americans and Russian Americans. Do Ghanaians have some kind of sub-Saharan African privilege? How it is it explained that so many black immigrant groups out-perform existing African Americans?
In addition, Nigerian Americans are one of the most educated groups in America, as one Rice University survey indicates. Though they make up less than 1 percent of the black population in America, nearly 25 percent of the black student body at Harvard Business School in 2017 consisted of Nigerians. In post-bachelor education, 61 percent of Nigerian Americans over the age of 25 hold a graduate degree compared to only 32 percent for the US-born population. If race is the issue are Nigerians not black?
These facts challenge the prevailing Progressive notion that America’s institutions are built to universally favor whites and “oppress” minorities or blacks. On the whole, whatever “systemic racism” exists appears to be incredibly ineffectual, or even nonexistent, given the multitude of groups who consistently eclipse whites.
If we look at health outcomes reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we find that African Americans are less likely than whites to die of several health conditions such as bladder cancer, leukemia, esophageal cancer, lung cancer, bladder cancer, brain cancer and skin cancer, to take a few arbitrary examples. But no one in their right mind would protest any “health privilege” enjoyed by African Americans in these instances. And while blacks have the highest COVID-19 death rate, more than double that of whites, the group with the lowest death rate from the corona virus is actually Asian Americans.
The real explanation of differentiated outcomes comes, more so, from the following explanation. If you are raised by a father and mother, you enter adulthood with more privileges than anyone else in American society, irrespective of race, ethnicity, or sex. That’s why the poverty rate among two parent black families is only 7 percent.
Compare that with a 22 percent poverty rate among whites in single-parent homes. Obviously the two-parent home is the decisive “privilege.”
Another “privilege,” if one wants to use that term, that dwarfs “white privilege” is Asian privilege. Asian Americans do better than white Americans in school, on IQ tests, on credit scores, and on other positive measures. In fact, according to recent data from the Federal Reserve, Asians collectively have surpassed whites as the wealthiest group of Americans. Will the Left soon complain about Asian privilege?
So then why all this Left-Wing talk about white privilege?
The major reason is in order to portray blacks as victims. This achieves two huge goals for the Socialist/Left, one political, the other philosophical.
The political goal is to ensure that blacks continue to view America as racist. The Left knows that the only way to retain political power in America is to perpetuate the belief among black Americans that their primary problem is white racism. Only then will blacks continue to regard the Left and the Democrats as indispensable.
The philosophical reason is that the Left denies — as it has since Marx — the primacy of moral and cultural values in determining the fate of the individual and of society. In the Left’s view, it is not poor values or a lack of moral self-control that causes crime, but poverty and, in the case of black criminals, racism. Therefore, the disproportionate amount of violent crime committed by black males is not attributable to the moral failure of the black criminal or to the likelihood of his not having been raised by a father, but to an external factor over which he has little or no power… white racism.
White privilege is another Leftist attempt, and a successful one, to keep America from focusing on what will truly help black America…a resurrection of the black family for example…and instead to focus on an external problem: white privilege.
In doing so, the Left has become the only real enemy the black has in America today.
Unfortunately, with any the theory that has a basic premise that is false, the theory will achieve a life of its own if it is not questioned. The claim made by the media, race peddlers, and academia that all people who are white are privileged is an absolutely absurd assertion.
In all the arguments that were made as to how white privilege is personified, they may have been true at one time, but that privilege pertained to whites of privilege and not to all whites. The difference is significant because a “white privilege” assertion as pertaining to all whites masks the base cause of lack of privilege which is the Leftist destruction of the nuclear family, its ensuing poverty, and the absence of a quality education to break free of their victimology mind-set.
“I was born in a country where anything is possible. That gave me hope. That knowledge gave me the ability to chase my dreams. Now we constantly tell young men and women they’re a step back at birth simply based on the color of their skin.”