The Myth of White Privilege

The white man tends to be blamed for a lot of “social injustices” in today’s society. Ironically enough, I have yet to meet this notorious figure that is responsible for the failures of minorities and so much more. I sure hope to meet this mysterious villain someday so I can blame him for all of my problems just the same.

This generation is turning into a soft one. Or rather, it already has. Now, if you are a member of a minority group, you can scream “white privilege” to a white person, illustrate how they could not possibly understand your struggles, and then people cheer for you because this is an approved point of view. It is as if you are naming the single greatest cause of every obstacle you face, and in doing so, you are empowering yourself and all those oppressed by the mighty dictator, the evil white man.

Let us believe for a minute that this is all true, that somehow the white man is to blame for most, or all, of the unequal outcomes felt by minorities. So what if he is? What does simply acknowledging the problem solve? Does it make it easier to craft solutions? Evidently this is not the case. After all, rioting in the streets, destroying property, and killing people simply because of the color of their skin are anything but solutions.

Just as the Left loves to redistribute wealth in the name of equal outcome, it aspires to do the same by redistributing responsibility, victimizing some and falsely blaming others. And this is where this victimized mentality comes from, that there is some faceless nameless group lurking in the shadows plotting minority demise.

I do not know where the adamant belief in white privilege originated, but it is unfortunate that it has managed to get this far. There is no evil white man out there in the system to get you. Jim Crow was 8 decades ago and slavery was abolished 150 years ago, it’s time to start taking responsibility for the poor choices that you make.

All the term white privilege boils down to is a popular buzzword designed to spur a victim mentality in minorities, then silence any criticism from the other aisle, which in this case is white people who recognize that white privilege does not exist. It is simply a means to erode responsibility.

How is this privilege that white people inherently have measured? Perhaps income is the means of measurement, after all, the income gap between whites and minorities is said to be growing year after year. Or, maybe income is not the indicator of white privilege. In 2012, Asian-American households had the highest median income($68,636), while the median income for white households was $57,000.

Furthermore, in 2003, black women with a bachelor’s degree had a median income of $33,142, while white women with a bachelor’s degree had a median income of $30,082. Also in the same year, whites with a doctoral degree had a median income of $65,287, while the median income of blacks with a doctorate was $72,743. Is anyone going to assert that blacks with a doctorate are now privileged? Hardly so. The simple fact of the matter is that these individuals made better life choices and are now reaping the rewards, while those who made poor choices are whining and assigning blame to anyone but themselves.

This is what white privilege boils down to, minorities who made poor choices slandering whites who made better choices. It truly is unfortunate. Coined by liberals, the term “white privilege” gives a perfect path to discrimination towards white people. For instance, whites are more than 5 times less likely to be accepted into an elite American university than equally qualified blacks. In addition, despite consuming a minuscule share of government services, whites pay an excessively large share of taxes.

Of course, these facts will be ignored. The truth is, only when whites are over-represented in these sorts of fields and industries is there a push for diversity. After all, is anyone going to slander the National Basketball Association for having too many black people? Just as blacks are dominant in athletic professions, whites are the dominant force in academia and in business as CEOs.

One popular piece of evidence for white privilege is the disadvantages felt by minorities in the past. Slavery, Jim Crow, that sort of thing. While there is a heart-wrenching case to be had with it, such does not stand under basic scrutiny. How many believe that there were more ghetto riots prior to the 1960s than that of which we have seen in the last decade, even in the last year? And no, white racism and poverty are not driving causes in these riots, for both of these were much worse leading up to the 1960s, not after.

During the Civil Rights movement, the culture of the black community changed for the worse, part of which a result of the growth of the welfare state. The economic incentives offered by welfare laws for the avoidance of marriage and two-parent families had disastrous consequences. While the majority of black children grew up in two-parent families prior to the 1960s, 72 percent of black children today grow up in single-parent homes. How is this the fault of white people?

Another perfect example of white privilege has to do with crime and law enforcement. From 1999 to 2011, there were 1,130 blacks and 2,151 whites killed by police officers. But, aren’t whites favored in the hands of law enforcement? Additionally, according to Bureau of Justice statistics, there were 62, 593 black victims of white violence and 320,082 white victims of black violence in 2010. Are these the examples of white privilege that people talk about?

Because discussions on white privilege often revolve around the misfortunes felt by minorities, it is important to highlight the information to be had on the other side. Affirmative Action is a prime example. How does this diversity based policy work in the benefit of whites? Because you are less likely to be hired for a job than a lesser qualified person of color, all in the name of diversity, this somehow testifies to solving the problem of privilege. All this really ends up doing is punishing whites who work hard and desire to reap their rewards.

Perhaps people do not realize that claims of “privilege” cannot be logically tied to race. What doing such suggests is that all white people share the exact same opportunities, while all oppressed unfortunate minorities grow up in the same circumstances. Is the young white boy growing up in the ghetto seriously more privileged than Sasha Obama? Is the white widow struggling to support her 3 boys more privileged than Oprah Winfrey? Do successful people of color not exist in this world? If all whites are truly privileged at every step of the way, why do successful minority people even exist?

It is funny, how the concept of white privilege is entirely based on perspective. Indefinitely, those who scream “white privilege” could be considered to have “American privilege” by those in less fortunate nations. All it comes down to is a matter of choices. Good choices reap success, bad choices do not. Why are we punishing those who take risks, work hard, and bask in the fruits of their determination simply because of the color of their skin?

Life is not fair. Life has never been fair, life is never going to be fair, and to pretend that it ever will be is to live in a fairy tale world. Completely equal opportunity is never going to be achieved, least of all if you aspire to use the power of the government to somehow accomplish giving everyone an equal fair chance. If you truly desire more people to be better off, stop asking the State to interfere in the lives of so many people. Is it entirely unknown to people that the more the State is asked to do, the worse off people end up?

So many progressive left narratives are based on victimization, misinformation, and division, only to thenceforth be followed by cries for the State to even the playing field. In the end, behavior matters, culture matters, life choices matter. Race does not matter. Not every differential demographic outcome is due to some underlying act of racism or sexism because not all demographics are equal.

The often cited Jeffersonian model that “all men are created equal” sounds noble, but it is not accurate. People are not equal, people are not going to be equal. In the words of economist F.A. Hayek, “There is all the difference in the world in treating people equally and attempting to make them equal.”

Remember this whenever there are cries about white privilege, simply ask, do you want to somehow make people equal or should they be left to have more control over their lives? If the said desire is the former, well, I do not know.

Isaiah Minter,is a 16-year old High School Writer and Debater. He advocates for liberty and prosperity, the preservation of Western Culture, laissez-faire capitalism, and the recognition of the illegitimate nature of government. Isaiah can be found here