Our friend* Jeremy at Social Science Lite writes about being an anti-white privilege activist…with privilege.
See, when I launch into a tirade against inequality in the criminal justice system or discriminatory land-use policies, my audience doesn’t really feel uncomfortable or scared. I can be loud without being threatening. When I get into my rants, my audience probably just thinks I’m passionate. As long as I’m not yelling, and my message is clear, people will listen. No one will write me off, make any negative assumptions about my background, or fear physical harm just because my tone was forceful or condemnatory.
Yet a person of color is not afforded the same privilege. Indeed, a black man with similar credentials and intellect would undoubtedly be viewed differently if he spoke in a domineering tone. Even if they are among friends, there is a fear—a fear I do not share—of being labeled “angry” and fulfilling centuries-old stereotypes of black masculinity. I will never suspect that people are afraid of me as a person; the thought won’t even cross my mind. As whites, we’re far less likely to be labeled “erratic,” “crazy,” or “out of control” than folks of color who relay the very same messages in the very same powerful tone. I never worry about fulfilling stereotypes of being loud, angry, or “ghetto”—stereotypes that might cause my audience to misinterpret or ignore my message. And that’s white privilege.
*And no, I’m not just posting this because he quoted me.