Denouncing "White Male Privilege" Is The Fashionable Racism And Sexism Of Our Day


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Denouncing "White Male Privilege" Is The Fashionable Racism And Sexism Of Our Day

Smart piece by Brendan O'Neill at Spiked on the ugly agenda of those I call feminist grievance hunters:
Those young, opinionated new media feminists who get handsome advances to write books spluttering about 'white male privilege' are far more privileged than many of the white males they splutter about -- especially the ones who empty their bins or sweep their roads. It's almost Orwellian in its topsy-turviness -- the most well-connected, middle-class women denouncing the alleged privileges of some of the most derided people in society.
Partly this is just bad science: feminists, leftists and others see that parliament and the boardroom still have a hefty number of white men in them and they extrapolate from this to argue that all white men must have lovely lives. Hence they always use the ridiculously sweeping terms 'white men' or 'male privilege', as if whiteness and maleness were inherently beneficial. As if loads of white men aren't dirt poor and awfully underprivileged. It's like seeing the Queen and thinking: 'Wow, white women in Britain have it good, don't they?'
... But there's something else going on too, something more pernicious: the way the politics of identity elbows aside anything to do with class. Unlike radicals of old, the new identitarians -- from feminists to shouty students -- do not see the world in terms of the haves and have nots, or the ruling class and the working class; in terms of work or wealth or clout. No, to them it's all about biology, race, gender: fixed traits, which they think define us as individuals and determine our destinies.
Such ugly, racial determinism is why they can use the blanket, dehumanising term 'white people' to refer to a vast group that contains all sorts of social classes and people: rich, poor, middling, left, right, good, bad, happy, sad, etc. The idea that all white men have a certain kind of life or outlook is as dumb, and foul, as saying all black men are criminals.
Identity politics doesn't totally smother class considerations, however; it helps to facilitate a new, PC version of class hatred. The bile spat by feminists and others at certain white men -- the uncouth, most derided ones -- is really old-fashioned loathing for the lower orders dolled up as a radical stand against 'male privilege'. When university students or media-based identity obsessives crow about drinking 'white male tears', they behave like modern-day Marie Antoinettes, laughing in the face of the less fortunate who will never experience the privileges enjoyed by these fashionable railers against privilege. 'White male privilege' is simply a myth.

Comments

There's a pissing contest to see who has the least privilege.
Posted by: NicoleK at January 7, 2016 1:12 AM
And in true Orwellian speak those who have the least privilege have the most, NicoleK.
There is also the odd idea that oppression is an inheritable asset. The idea that grandma was harassed by people who look like you, therefor it is moral that I harass you.
Posted by: Ben at January 7, 2016 4:11 AM

Ben has a great point. One of the key reforms of modern Westernism was to eliminate the inheritability of debt; we do not require children to pay debts accumulated by their parents. This is true economically but it generally also true morally. In fact, there is often a lot of sympathy for children of the moral bankrupt; we go out of our way to make sure they are not tarred with their parents' sins.

But here, for politically disfavored classes, we make an exception. So we have the following apocryphal conversation between an upper-middle-class feminist and a young man from Appalachia:

Feminist: "Your great-great-grandparents were slaveholders, therefore, you must pay for their sins."

Young man: "First of all, my great-great-grandparents grew up dirt poor in the hills of eastern Kentucky. It is unlikely that they had anything to do with slavery; it is likely that they themselves were sharecroppers. But aside from that, was as a society do not hold that children must pay the debts of their parents. So how is it that you can hold me responsible for something that you think my my great-great-grandparents did?"
Feminist: "Because white men! QED."

Posted by: Cousin Dave at January 7, 2016 6:37 AM

This was emphasized to me when I was growing up (as a Jewish kid) -- that there is no concept of "original sin" in Judaism. That you are personally responsible for your behavior but have no responsibility for "the sins of our fathers."

It is racism to tell you that you are a bad person simply because of your skin color and sex -- neither of which you had anything to do with.
It's also exactly contrary to what Martin Luther King argued against.

Posted by: Amy Alkon at January 7, 2016 6:52 AM
No, to them it's all about biology, race, gender: fixed traits
Oh, please. The Usual Suspects will tell you that gender is not a fixed trait. Some of them will even tell you that race isn't all that fixed (Shaun King, Rachel Dozal). It is what you deem yourself.
Your sexual orientation, of course, is fixed, but your gender. That's malleable.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie at January 7, 2016 7:41 AM
What’s more, young women now earn more than young men: £1,111 a year more, to be precise. Between the ages of 22 and 29, women in general — covering all races — out-earn guys; by the time women hit their thirties, however, their pay falls below men’s.
Lookie there! A pay gap! it must be fixed!

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie at January 7, 2016 7:44 AM
One of the key reforms of modern Westernism was to eliminate the inheritability of debt; we do not require children to pay debts accumulated by their parents.

I'm gonna quibble with this one. We've shifted it from direct from parents to children, as was the case, to a more modern model of letting the government deficit spend on the parents, and let the children (and grand/great-grand children) pay back the debt at some point in the future.

It is more "fair" in that it is an equitable screwing, but a screwing none-the-less.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie at January 7, 2016 7:50 AM
But that isn't a change IRA. Even way back when the government spent and the next generation had to pay back those long term debts.
Another interesting thing is lumping all 'white men' together. As far as I can tell there is a 'black' culture that is fairly unified across the US. But there isn't a unified 'white' culture. Scots, Italians, and Poles all have different value systems. Not to mention 'white hispanics'. There is no brotherhood other than national between these groups.

Posted by: Ben at January 7, 2016 8:05 AM
"White male privilege" has been thrown in my face for many decades; and, usually by those who have had more and better opportunities than I've had.
I've been told to "step aside" for women or "people of color" regardless of job qualifications.
Often, I've asked where can I get some of this "white male privilege" only to be told that I automatically have it and have so much of it that I don't even see it!

Posted by: charles at January 7, 2016 8:43 AM
Another interesting thing is lumping all 'white men' together. As far as I can tell there is a 'black' culture that is fairly unified across the US. But there isn't a unified 'white' culture.
Nor is there a "fairly unified" black culture. It's disparate.

via @SteveStuWill



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