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August 26, 2016

Comments

Maldroit is not a word, but it could be. A right corrupted. A tainted right.

Perhaps something could be built upon the word "default." Default humans in the U.S. (and elsewhere) are white, male, straight, and Christian. They don't require modifiers nearly as often as people who don't fit into all of those categories. Despite what I'm sure we'll hear from someone or other, they are not generally burdened on the societal level with the baggage that non-white, non-male, non-straight (and I'm using straight very broadly - perhaps synonymously with cisgendered, without bothering to dig into detailed definitions), non-Christians are.

Linguistics has the notion of 'unmarked' and 'marked' (pronounced mar-ked) It gets at the same thing, unmarked is the more common, and therefore less obtrusive.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Markedness

With an acknowledgement to lj's un/marked notion, the best I can come up offhand with is the compound 'untainted right' or 'untrammelled right'.

Similarly, is there a word to express the gap between de facto and de jure (other than reality) ?

"Norm-rights"

That is, the same rights that Norm would get.

I think I'd go with something more like "default rights." That is, the rights that are assumed to be yours . . . unless you don't happen to fall into the constellation of categories that the culture assumes is the default.

Even when demographic or other changes mean that the default category is no longer anything like a majority of the population. Or even a majority of the politically/economically/socially significant population.

"Level playing field" or something like that, perhaps? The short way I define "privilege" (and I've long been uncomfortable with it as a term myself) is "being able to assume the playing field is level".

As for fans using pseudonyms, that's been a thing as long as fandom has existed. I'd be tempted to ask your gracious gentleman of the Old School of SFF Fandom (Print Fanzine Division) if he'd ever taken that up with 4SJ.

"As for fans using pseudonyms, that's been a thing as long as fandom has existed. "

What? R.U. Sirius?

How about something like "specific advantage"?

One of the things that gets people's back up about the discussion of "privilege" is that it sounds like a general state of being and is often incorrectly used as such. When you try to tell a white working class dude that he's "privileged", it sounds like an attack.

"Specific advantage" tells people that we're talking about certain situations, actions and activities and not about privilege in a more general sense.

One thing that really gets lost in a discussion of privilege is that two people can have different levels of privilege over each other depending on the circumstance. If we consider, for example, a black professional person and a working poor white person, you can imagine different scenarios where each one might have the privilege.

Plus, I think "consider your specific advantage in this situation" sounds a lot less hostile than "check your privilege".

i am an aficionado of irony. many times there are situations which i've experienced which have struck me as funny when no one else has been because of my intense appreciation of irony. strangely, the underlying premise behind this conversation we're having here is almost too bitter for me to enjoy. think about it. we've been asked to find a p.c. euphemism for privilege so we won't trample the feelings of people who are mostly attracted to people like donald trump because he doesn't put up with p.c. bullshit and tells it like it is.

i've been using the term privilege for decades to describe the fact that as an upper-middle-class white man i don't have to worry about being shot dead or tased in an encounter with law enforcement officers, that i can get a mortgage to the limits of my credit at the lowest available rate on a house in pretty much any neighborhood i want without worrying about being redlined out of a location or charged a higher interest rate or being shoved into a subprime loan despite my good credit, and that my words are frequently taken more seriously than those of my colleagues who are female or black or hispanic. and i've been using that term because i possess all those advantages and more. john scalzi was on to something when he referred to the status of white male as the easy setting of life. even the poorest white man in the town i grew up in got more respect at the hands of anyone else he encountered than the wealthiest black man, be he a preacher or a doctor.

i find this conversation too bitter to enjoy.

Coming from a lily-white environment, navarro, I find your last claim difficult to believe. How about the drunks on the street? How about the juvenile delinquents? I would not claim that my compatriots in Finland treat everyone with equal respect. However, in a society as white as ours, it is easy for a white man to fall below the default respect given for a non-Finn.

Maldroit is not a word, but it could be.

"Maladroit", however, is a word. Confusion would ensue.

Navarro, we have not been asked to find a "PC euphemism".

A self professed aficionado of irony ought to appreciate subtle distinctions, and here those distinctions are clearly exemplified in your own post.

I've been using the term privilege for decades to describe the fact that as an upper-middle-class white man i don't have to worry about being shot dead or tased in an encounter with law enforcement officers...and that my words are frequently taken more seriously than those of my colleagues who are female or black or hispanic....

The good Doc wasn't suggesting a euphemism, but another word than "privilege" to use, then, to describe things some people experience as rights and which ought to be rights, but which aren't in practice always easily available to other people...
Not worrying about being shot clearly falls into that category; being taken more seriously than you colleagues equally obviously doesn't.

Like most Norman imports, privilege has a slightly formal tone, and also associations with the nobility -- hence, a small part of society. So it is easy to say "But a poor white person isn't privileged!" I think just saying "has the privilege of being white" is better because more specific; "has the benefits of being white" even better (benefit lacks the snootier tone of privilege). If I were to coin a word, it would be "autoboon": boon has somewhat fallen out of use, but perhaps that saves it from the associations of privilege.

I suspect what Navarro is alluding to in that last bit, and if he's not I am, is that an individual black or Hispanic derelict lying in the gutter is viewed as yet another particular data point in the evidence of some generalized colossal racial failure or deficiency .. look at him, if only his people valued education and advancement, if only his father didn't abandon his family like all of their fathers do, if only his racial peers did not embrace the sociopathy of lacking the work ethic, etc. What do you expect? They are all bums. There but by the grace of God ... no, scratch that, that wouldn't happen to me. I was raised right, even though I am Irish, the onlooker might think. If luck enters one's thoughts, it is the bad luck of his race that gets blamed. Those people. The entire race receives justice by the unfortunate individual's failure. His race is a blight on him. He can't even own his own failure.

The white derelict sprawled in the gutter is at least accorded the backhanded respect of having failed miserably by his own individual effort. It's his fault. His failure in not taking all of the decent, wholesome values of his parentage, his peers, and commonly-accepted white society is seen at least as his sole ownership. We don't know what happened. I'm sure he had decent parents and was afforded all of the opportunity his society had to offer, and look at him, HE, that individual failed to take advantage. He is looked upon as sort of a rogue entrepreneur of massive individual failure. No one in America and elsewhere would think, look, he has Aryan features and his hair looks as if it was once blonde (am I stereotyping, well there we go) .. he must be one of those Finns, or maybe Norwegian or, God forbid, Swedish and we know what that means, don't we? No, this guy had integrity and did it his way, the chump. There but by the grace of God, go I, we might think, unlike in the other case, because really the man is down on his luck and he gets to own it like a paid off mortgage. He alone is accorded the dignity of justice's judgement. HE is a blight on his race; the rest of us had nothing to do with it.

In Ayn Rand's "The Virtues of Selfishness"* her definitive essays in which she quotes her own fictional character, John Galt, at stupifying length, for insight, somehow forgetting I guess that she authored his words, but then her characters are hard to get a word in edgewise on (it would be like Flaubert writing a one hundred page essay on adultery and using up 30% of the text quoting Emma Bovary, except at least that would be good reading, his words in her mouth being so delicious), she mentions the revulsion to the point of physical sickness those of her ethos experience when they step over a derelict in the street.

I'd wager, and see if many of us catch ourselves doing this at least occasionally, that when she stepped over an unfortunate white person in the street and told Nathaniel Brandon about it .. who she eventually stepped over too, in stiletto heels, probably with Alan Greenspan looking on, but never mind .... she would say "I felt revulsion today stepping over that homeless person down on the corner"

That's how you can tell the unfortunate one was white.

If otherwise, she would say, "I felt revulsion today stepping over that homeless person .... he was a Negro ... down on the corner."

A signifier not accorded to the white guy by the white woman. Of what?

I am generalizing in this comment beyond the political categories of conservative and liberal.

If we add those back in, well, that's a whole other can of worms.


*The only book I ever threw out. I kept my "Atlas Shrugged" for a time to place on the floor against a door that kept slamming shut when the wind came up.

I'm curious, do black people and Latinos and, perhaps white women, all look at the black person in the gutter differently than the white person in the gutter? Is white privilege conveyed by everyone? Do black bankers give better mortgages to white people, black Realtors showing black people houses only the right neighborhoods? Do Latino cops give the white boys a pass? Do white women, blacks and others give more respect to what white men say?

Count, those first two paragraphs are a very nice summary.

But I would note that there is a historical caveat: A century ago, if that white guy lying in the gutter were Italian or Irish, he would get the same negatively-charged group-membership assumption as non-white groups get today. Different groups; same view.

In a way, that's actually kind of hopeful. It means that groups can work their way across the boundary. I don't know how, in specific, a group does that. I don't think they ought to have to. (And I really hope it doesn't require some other group be found to serve as a replacement.) But it is hopeful that it least it appears to be possible.

A century ago, if that white guy lying in the gutter were Italian or Irish ...

Thus my crack about the Irish.

Yes, there is hope for crossing the boundary and joining the fraternity. After generations of hazing by various means, some more grotesque than others. By, generally speaking, a certain class of self-appointed people sharing certain physical traits who assumed themselves as members of the fraternity gratis from the get-go, but then unwittingly, really they didn't mean it, wrote this thing called the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, with those miraculous words that could be thrown back in their faces and enforced in ways they never dreamed of, given their assumptions about privilege.

Privilege as a birthright. Out of the privileged few, One. Them. Not the others.

"(And I really hope it doesn't require some other group be found to serve as a replacement.)"

This I'm not too hopeful about given the outbreak of outright radical demagoguery. When demagoguery against one set of Others seems to wear out its welcome, the "pivot", as it is so charmingly called now, happens and new prey is swiftly located and hoisted to the gallows.

A cursory examination of election cycles since forever, but let's take since 1980, traces an uninterrupted arc from Reagan's fat black welfare mother baiting to Rove's gay baiting on behalf of George W. Bush to post-9/11 Muslim-bashing to the more recent focus on wetback rapists, with interspersing of uppity feminazi baiting, and the general demonization of liberals.

The upshot now is that we whites, mostly male, hold ourselves to be endangered victims because the franchise keeps being extended beyond the original legacy members.

The terrible beauty of the Trump phenomenon is that he has brilliantly, for a four-legged swine, that is, gathered up all of those threads into one big simultaneous hate lollapalooza and any criticism is labeled political correctness, which is exactly what conservatives have been saying for years, one group at a time with some overlap as political convenience demands.

And 40% are on board.

Watching Ryan and McConnell studiously examine their fingernails as Trump speaks plainly through a megaphone all of the demagogic prejudices their party has been dog whistling and exploiting forever is really quite something to behold.

You'd think they'd run out of targets. But Ann Coulter et al are remarkably resourceful, the dirt.

None of this of course lets the Democratic Party of old off the hook and maybe even some elements of it now can go f*ck themselves.

I'm sure at some point I will mouth those words towards Hillary Clinton if she is elected, and she'd better be, but unless she actually murders a guy in Time Square during rush hour, I will vote for her, because as cleek points out, it is a binary choice.

Trump on the other hand could stab a guy in Times Square and lick the blood off the knife and his frenzied minions would go wild with enthusiasm. Not Ryan or McConnell, I'll admit. They'd slink away to an appointment for a root canal and rest assured silently that they can work with the man toward their own murderous ends.

None of this of course lets the Democratic Party of old off the hook and maybe even some elements of it now can go f*ck themselves.

Nor does it condemn decent conservatives who have been deliberately driven from the Party for compromising with those outside the hallowed privileged circle. People who I don't consider to be Republicans any longer and should stop mistaking themselves as part of that monstrosity when that monstrosity is called on the carpet.

Like Marty and McTX.

By the way, I'm under no illusion that had a Jewish individual happened by while George Zimmerman was stalking Trayvon Martin with a fucking gun, it very well could be that the two of them might have have found common ground and today Trayvon would be alive, Zimmerman would be running for Congress, and the Jewish guy would still be on disability from his injuries because all groups in America, generally speaking, seem to agree that when all is said and done, the Jews are behind it all.

Perhaps "opportunity"? I don't have a problem with "privilege" except that I can't spell it. I think it is the right word to use to express the concept. But if we are looking for a different word, perhaps "opportunity" would work. White men, especially professionally dressedone, have the opportunity to survive encounters with police officers. White proffessionla men have the opportunity to be perceived as credible, where others may have to earn credibility . And so on.

My cat is interfering, so I'll do my best - please ignore typos.


Now that we all know what privilege means, after having had to be educated, isn't it best to stick with the definition? I mean, c'mon - it's hard enough to "check your privilege" when you're having to "check whatever else the hell it is that you have to check".

Hey, make it easy on us privileged folks! We're privileged!

In a nutshell, where the nuts are:

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2016/08/your-day-trump-friday-26-august-2016-74-days-until-election

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKMK3XGO27k

I like "born on third and thought you hit a triple"

Which has little to do with white privilege. There are tons of people not born on third base that seemingly enjoy white privilege.

"The white derelict sprawled in the gutter is at least accorded the backhanded respect of having failed miserably by his own individual effort"

lol

a story. maybe i've told this one before, apologies if so.

one night i'm loading into a gig. it's probably 9 or 9:30 PM. this guy, kind of reasonable looking guy, not smelly or unkempt or anything, walks up and asks me for $5.

he's a carpenter - sorry, a General Contractor - and after working in a town up the coast he got to bending the elbow a bit and drank up all his cash.

and his truck was running out of gas.

he didn't want to call his wife to come bail him out, so here he was, asking J-random strangers for $5 so he could get home.

i gave the guy my standard "seriously, WTF?" response, and I guess he was offended.

"what, you think i'm some kind of bum?" he burst out. "I'm not a bum, I'm an entrepreneur!"

I have to admit, it cracked me the hell up.

I gave the guy a couple of bucks and off he went, I don't know whether to buy enough gas to get home, or to pony up for another round.

"I'm not a bum, I'm an entepreneur!". words to live by.

"Which has little to do with white privilege."

see, to me, this whole thing is getting a little long in the tooth.

black people are treated differently in the united states than white people, asian people, latinos, whoever. they are treated differently, and not to their advantage.

because their skin is black.

i'm just putting that out there as an assertion, because it's just too freaking tedious to go document it once again.

no links. just accept it as demonstrated, or not.

if we get past the "accept it as demonstrated" hurdle, then watch this:

all the crap you don't have to put up with because you're not black? that's the white, or at least not-black, privilege part.

yes, there are lots of people who aren't black who are up shit's creek without a paddle.

If that's you, and you're also black, you get an extra helping of shit. that's the white privilege part.

Sure, so where's third base?

I may have told this story before. Thirty years ago I worked in a Datacenter that was pretty well integrated. Actually black people were probably 40% of the workers. I was just a guy, the guy I hung out with and went to lunch with, had drinks after work now and then etc.was black.

One day we were hanging out and another of our friends stopped to chat and mentioned he was coming to the party on Friday. My friend got really nervous, awkwardness ensued and my feelings were hurt. So the next day he invited my wife and I, with some back and forth about not feeling obligated etc. We were cool.

Friday came, we showed up, not a single person talked to us. Even people I talked to everyday at work. We never got our coats off. A couple of people just asked my friend what the hell
we were doing there. He looked awful, I excused myself thanked him and we left. We never talked about it, and never got together with our families again. Not so many lunches then none.

There is a point in there somewhere. I still wonder what it is. But white privilege discussions always bring that to mind.

So we talk about how black people are treated differently, but that in itself is a white perspective. My earlier question wasn't without a point. White males make up about 35- 40% of the population, so who is treating black people different in their other 60% of their interactions?

Is white privilege conferred by all of society? Or just white people?

Briefly (because I've had a hell of a day and wound up self-medicating with Scotch): white privilege is general, having to do with the place of "whites" in most societies. I've certainly been treated with such privilege in Asia, quite extensively. You also wind up paying extra often (some of my friends refer to this as "skin tax") and may be subject to sotto voce insults in a language you may or may not understand, but by and large it is understood that a White Person is someone not to be messed with lightly, that any harm done to him/her may have Consequences. Much the same is true in some dealings with "persons of color" in the US; they may or may not like me, but in most cases they're going to treat me with caution, if not actual respect. I'd have to go off the beaten track, into areas known to be "unsafe," in most cases, to feel the absence of the aura of protection that generally surround me.

As a classic Person Of Privilege - American (a big factor, globally speaking), white, male, straight, nominally "Christian," evidently educated (and therefore in some sense of the elite), and even tall (that helps, you know!) - I cannot be unaware of the number of situations in which I have had some advantage over those who were less privileged. Less likely to be snubbed and overlooked, more likely to be taken seriously by those in authority if I complained or was questioned, facing (if I thought about it) reduced competition for admission or jobs (because many of those who might have competed had been weeded out earlier in the process, so didn't even appear on the "short list"), more likely to be called on or seen as a prospective "leader," etc. And that's not even considering the crucial aspect for some people, which is Less Likely To Be Stopped And Then Shot By The Police. Never even occurred to me.

There are just enough snubs and inconveniences (cf. "skin tax," above, or Marty's anecdote) to make one realize that this Privilege has its occasional downs as well as ups. And I spent most of the first half of my life poor - not destitute but well down in the lower tax brackets (my father never made enough to pay any income tax at all) - and thus was acutely aware of the extra privilege that wealth supplies, some of which I now enjoy. But anyone who thinks that he'd be better off - legally, socially, vocationally - as a person without these privileges is not really thinking at all, just reacting viscerally to his plight in an imperfect world. There may well be psychological advantages to not being as WASP-y as I am - I'm certainly not suggesting that everyone wants to be me! - but almost all the mundane real world privileges work on my behalf.

(I realize I said "Briefly" at the outset - please accept that for an ex-academic who has been drinking, this IS brief.)

Marty, this is not meant to be sarcastic, but it will probably be taken as such. Your experience, being judged by your skin color in some circumstance where they didn't expect it happens to African-Americans day in and day out. That being the case, is it hard to imagine that minority groups might carve out places where they can feel comfortable? And might not their urge to carve out these spaces account for the experience you had?

I don't mean to interrogate you, but are there not places where you might not invite an African-American co-worker? If there are, why would you hesitate?

Given the particular historic arc of African Americans, part of their history has been devoted to carving out 'safe spaces' where they can be themselves. That African-Americans do this doesn't invalidate the concept of white privilege, it simply shows that human trait of 'if you can't beat em (doing it), join em'. Furthermore, one could see it as a symptom of white privilege wondering why they, as outsiders, aren't made comfortable when they enter these spaces.

I suspect this is too gamergeeky, but it seems to me that white people (men especially) start off with a certain number of automatically achieved saving throws and bonuses on the others. Doesn't stop them from screwing up or getting screwed over by other white people, but it sure helps vis a vis everyone else. Maybe something could be made of that notion.

I am happy to answer lj, there is no place in my life I can imagine where I would exclude someone based on their skin color.

Hmm, that's not quite true, I know some racists that I would not invite a person of color to be around. Dinner, social events. In an instance where I control the guest list the person of color would get the invitation .

I do not find it hard to imagine the desire to "carve out a space". If you are white that's called racist. If you are a male it's called misogyny. If you are black it's OK. If you are a w7oman it's called supporting sisterhood. The creation of exclusionary groups in response to being excluded, while continuing to demand inclusion in all groups creates a sense of privilege in itself. We get to be part of the whole and separate. A concept most white males today have been taught is wrong.

Marty,

I am a Finn, and belong to the Finnish-speaking majority of this nation. In addition to the Finnish-speakers, there is a historical minority of Swedish-speaking Finns, comprising about 5 % of the population. Their language is one of our two national languages.

The Finnish nation is, as such, bilingual. In practice, it means that most organisations are theoretically bilingual, but in practice unilingual, because Finnish is spoken by the vast majority. In addition, the Swedish-speakers usually have their own organisations, which are unilingually Swedish. We Finnish-speakers accept that, because in practice, any bilingual organisation becomes functionally Finnish-speaking in a decade or two. The Swedish-speakers need their own dedicated cultural space so that they can maintain their language. That's OK, because keeping your native language, if you are a historical minority, is a basic right.

The situation with white male safe spaces is similar. They are needed only if and when the white males lose their dominant position in the society. Minority safe spaces are necessary to establish.
Majority will create its safe space by its raw dominance anyhow.

I think that's a great insight Lurker. The challenge for me would be if all those Finnish speaking groups were considered racists and hateful. The other dynamic is that the individual can be included by speaking Finnish*, the black person in the US can't really be white, or vice versa. So blacks can't be included if the criteria is white. And the other way.

*That's an assumption

lots of non-white people are racist. lots of women are hostile to men.

white men have no monopoly on that stuff.

the difference is the degree to which the laws, institutions, and culture you live in are relatively more favorable to you, as a kind of default, because you are white, or male, or whatever.

that's the privilege part. that's third base.

there are demoraphics with white skin, historically and now, that did not and do not enjoy a privileged status. so, maybe the conversation should be about the privileges enjoyed by white people with a certain minimum income. or white people who dont have certain regional accents. or pick any number of markers other than skin color that might cause you to lose your privileged status.

but privilege, as an assumed preferred status, most definitely exists.

Marty,

my point was exactly that there are very few purely Finnish-speaking national organisations. They are all bilingual: They have an official Swedish-language name, their bylaws exist in Swedish and you can, for example, use Swedish in your correspondence or speeches in meetings. (Every educated Finn speaks both languages.) It is only an practical level that they are monolingually Finnish. If an organisation declares itself formally monolingual it is considered hateful.

Interesting Lurker, so the culture outweighs the rule over time, but the accommodation is enough to foster inclusion. I could see that.

"born on third base"

Whenever I hear that term, I think of Jackie Robinson.

http://sabr.org/bioproj/person/bb9e2490

Sorry, lots of reading.

Second base was the problem, what with Enos Slaughter and all.

Not content with third, which was no sweat, he drove pitchers and opposing managers nuts stealing home. When he purchased another type of home, that was considered stealing too:

"With the help of a welfare agency, the Robinson family purchased a home in a predominantly white Pasadena neighborhood, where neighbors immediately petitioned to get rid of the newcomers and even offered to buy them out. When those ploys failed the family was harassed for several years. The Robinson boys often had to fight to defend themselves, and young Jackie was involved in his share of scrapes with white youths and had some run-ins with authorities."

Now, here's another pretty good base stealer and competitor who figured prominently in laying land mines, hurdles, and incoming on Robinson no matter which base the latter earned:

http://sabr.org/bioproj/person/0fe7f158

But Chapman's mortgage papers on any of the home bases he purchased in the meat world were never questioned.

Chapman had a mouth on him, which he got away with for most of his career. So did Robinson, but Branch Rickey told him to stow it, so what looked like dignity, not that Robinson was not dignified, was in many cases suppressed fury.

Where do you think Barack Obama learned the restraint of NOT pulling South Carolina Rep Joe Wilson over the balcony by his necktie and breaking every bone in his cracker face when the lousy racist f*ck took the unprecedented Chapman-like step of shooting off his confederate mouth, but instead Barack danced off third for a cool walk-off steal of home during his SOTU.

The White House might as well have been in a tony white neighborhood in Pasadena for Wilson's tens of millions of fellow-travelers.

"Former teammate Joe Black, speaking for generations of black ballplayers, later said, "When I look at my house. I say 'Thank God for Jackie Robinson.’”

Black wasn't talking about home base.

or white people who dont have certain regional accents.

And isn't it interesting that, even if you are white, you can also get bonus points if you have the right regional accent. More, that the "right" regional accent is actually British, rather than American. (Or Australian. Americans are terrible at telling the difference.)

A concept most white males today have been taught is wrong.

Just my opinion, but I feel those other private spaces offer refuge, but the white male space, when aggregated, offers power.

Therein lies the difference.

Nick T "I suspect this is too gamergeeky, but it seems to me that white people (men especially) start off with a certain number of automatically achieved saving throws and bonuses on the others. Doesn't stop them from screwing up or getting screwed over by other white people, but it sure helps vis a vis everyone else. Maybe something could be made of that notion."

In old school RPG design we're talking about Advantages (or Perks, Backgrounds or Merits) which are ways of getting extra points to spend on character creation or to have chances weighted in your character's favor in particular circumstances. RPG design being what it is, those Advantages are bought, zero sum, by counterbalancing Disadvantages (or Flaws). Frex: Sherlock is a character who has an Eiditic Memory that is balanced by a Dependency on Cocaine.

IRL, though, none of these Advantages and Disadvantages are zero sum. The game is not balanced.

Another good discussion of this that I've taught in my courses on video games in society: All Skulls On: Teaching intersectionality through Halo

Lurker: does Finnish bilingualism extend to Sami speakers?

privilege is what you have when you aren't subject to myriad prejudices that hurt minorities.

alternately, it's the benefits accrued do to positive prejudice.

s/do/due

Marty, do you really not see the difference between a white affinity group and a black one?

I don't actually believe that.

If an African-American person told you they were going to an NAACP meeting, you would't think the same thing you would if a white American told you they were going to a group that was dedicated to the advancement of white people, right? With the white person, you'd immediately suspect that they were a white supremacist.

So why don't you tell me why you think that instinct is wrong?

Snarki,

There are some 5,000 Sami speakers, with three separate languages, in Finland. Their language does not have the status as a National language, and Sami speakers have linguistic rights only in their traditional area, Northern Lapland. There, the road signs are in all Sami languages, in addition to Finnish, and the Sami have full rights to use Sami in schools and public offices.

However, there is nothing comparable to the Swedish-speaking society. The Swedish-speakers have a completely parallel structure of civil society, organized by language: Separate sports clubs, learned societies, NGOs, choirs, parishes, theaters, think tanks and foundations. (E.g. There are two national mathematical societies in Finland: a bilingual and a Swedish-speaking one.) Even a separate Swedish-speaking brigade in the Finnish Navy for Swedish-speaking conscripts to serve in. This is possible, because the Swedish-speaking Finns are clearly wealthier and better educated than rural Sami, in addition to having a population roughly 80 times larger. The existence of such structure is necessary if we want to maintain a living minority language, but difficult to organize for 5,000 people.

Re: what got Irish, Italians, etc., into the "white privilege" camp.

My opinion? Intermarriage, and the resulting kids.

what got Irish, Italians, etc., into the "white privilege" camp?

My reflexive response was: when the public image of the drunken Irishman was replaced in popular culture by the image of the Irish cop on the beat. That is, they moved from being the problem to being the solution. The social acceptance of Italians lagged because no image of an Italian cop quite made it into the popular culture to elbow out the Mafia.

But I suspect that Snarki's explanation is more correct. And the biggest impediment for blacks making the transition to the "privilege" camp via intermarriage may just be the tradition of "one drop" -- that is, especially in the South, if you had even just a single black ancestor anywhere, you were considered black.

Maybe a good baseball analogy (and one surely dear to the heart of our esteemed Chief Justice Roberts!) would be that rich white men get six strikes, rich white women and Asian Americans get five, middle class white people get four, poor whites get three - and most African Americans and Latinos get two at best.

Just speculating, as one does.

I don't think that the rich actually get more strikes. It's just that their foul balls don't count as strikes. No matter when they come, even early in the count.

what got Irish, Italians, etc., into the "white privilege" camp.

the Irish did it the way many bullied kids get themselves out from under the bully's heel: they found someone made an even easier target for the bully, shouted to the bully "hey, look at that guy! what a loser!" and then they joined in the harassment with all the gusto they could manage.

and guess who that guy was.

I like entitlement.

Everyone has the right to a telephone, and with that right, the entitlement to not have that telephone used against them either as a weapon or a source of vexation.

What's best about entitlement is that nobody has a lein on the house any longer.

nope, there's no white privilege.

Indeed, cleek. And it gets even worse when some folks, who just happen to always be white, go on to say, "Well yes, I admit that happens, but just suck it up. That's the way it is. Nothing can be done."

One undeserving recipient of Affirmative Action is worth 1000 recipients of white privilege.

Ok, I read the linked story. Not much meat, the chart, created by one person who was watching other people assess candidates is suspect in the first place, they certainly can't be guilty of bias in their assessment.

Ultimately saying things like this:

Every black, female, Hispanic, and Asian person in the country has been a victim of this faux meritocracy argument and knows perfectly well that it's rubbish.
makes me disregard pretty much anything the article says. Because it's stupid. Victims all.

The article was a little goofy, but I had little doubt about such racial and gender biases before reading it. If it were the only thing on which I were basing my opinion on the subject, I'd have a hard time forming one at all.

Because it's stupid. Victims all.

ya know, Marty, you are the exact reason i posted that link here. as soon as i started reading that article, i thought of you, and i i knew what your reaction to it would be. and you did not let me down!

"non-whites face particular problems and biases that are often subtle, often unconscious, and haven't disappeared yet."

does anyone think this isnt true?

Since Marty is reading links, I offer this one.

does anyone think this isnt true?

There goes russell again with his rhetorical questions. :)

Plenty of people think minorities get all the breaks. I think you'd have to be blind to think that, be it willfully or otherwise, but there it is.

Our old friend Gary Farber posted a link to that same article on FB, bobbyp. I read it a few days ago. It's an interesting read.

Awesome article, honest perspective.

hsh, You don't have to be blind, you have to be poor, white and working.

When I hear about 'subtle' biases, I'd point folks to Abbie Conant's story.

http://www.osborne-conant.org/ladies.htm#sixteen

Another account is in Malcolm Gladwell's Blink.

I had a lot to drink last night, so that may account for my crankiness this morning. Here's my better word for "privilege": Bullshit.

The first human being I spoke to this morning was an African American female who, I learned as we chatted while standing in line together to order our take-out breakfast, is a 29 year senior property and casualty underwriter of a major insurance that, by coincidence, hired me last week to defend a large lawsuit in San Antonio.

Then I got to thinking about lunch yesterday. I took our most recently hired young lawyer out to discuss two cases I was bringing her in on, one of which is the case in San Antonio, and this young Asian female got the "McKinney pep" talk, which is a fairly level toned discussion of how high my standards are--at least in my mind if not elsewhere--and she doesn't have to take assignments from me but if she does, expect to be held to account accordingly, blah, blah, blah. She was happy to sign on, as are most people who are ambitious and want to get ahead.

Then I thought about the email I sent to Associate Corporate General Counsel X, an African American male, yesterday advising on how, in a death case I'm defending for his employer, Fortune 500 international engineering firm X, we are going to handle a particular thorny issue that my senior female associate on the case was struggling with.

Then I thought about my African American male law partner who sits in the office next to me who updated me on a case he and I will try together early next year if the judge doesn't throw the case out first.

Here are a few others I've had contact with in the last five days: two married doctors whose two daughters are both in med school, my daughter (MBA, top promotion and raise at every review, 7 months pregnant), my daughter in law (senior VP in some kind of snorky, complex marketing operation that I can't begin to understand), our female African American office manager, the African American female at another insurance company who hired me and who I report to weekly on case status.

There's more, but I have to get back to work. Which reminds me: GFTNC, I didn't walk away from the conversation, I was dragged away by work. I'm totally underwater, but in a mostly good way.

And then I started counting all of the other people of color or women or gay or what have you I deal with and tons of other people deal with everyday and I am again reminded of much bullshit there is about how shitty women/people of color have it because they are not *at this moment in time* exactly co-equal with white males.

And I got to thinking, why is it, if American is such a shit hole for people of color, why are so many of them coming here and not somewhere else?

Because, compared to 36 years ago when I got my law license, there has been a huge f'ing change. And all of this social justice hooey is making things worse, not better. We are in retrograde movement in race relations now because the PC "spokespeople" for women/people of color are surplus to needs if they can't find something wrong somewhere and blow it all out of proportion. And so they practice this totally divisive game of making everything about race and gender, pitting group against group. It's stupid, counter to reality and counterproductive to what was, up until Obama took office, a pretty stead trend of advancement.

And then have microaggressions, safe spaces and cultural appropriation. Really? Fuck me running.

It's a fucking embarrassment for women, gays and people of color to be recognized and touted for their skin pigmentation or their plumbing or who they sleep with when what got them where they are is that they could and did do the job.

Kevin Drum has no fucking clue what all women, LGBT's, people of color think. He is not their spokesperson and he is fucking clueless about what running a business is like. Clueless with a capital C.

Black Lives Matter has even less clue than Drum. Here you have a group that actively desires the absence of police, for all practical purposes, in the very neighborhoods that call the police the most. Has anyone taken a vote of the single women and the elderly in African American neighborhoods to ask them how they feel about the police?


An electrician is a good electrician regardless of color or gender and a bad electrician can burn your house down with you in it regardless of color or gender.

Making companies do a diversity disclosure is the first step toward slut shaming those companies for not meeting the Social Justice Warrior criteria for PC rectitude. So, hire a bunch of women and people of color, put them behind a desk and what you get is the worst possible outcome: people being hired for no better reason than plumbing or pigmentation and everyone else knows it. THAT will make everyone come together in peace and love.

So, when you say privilege, I hear bullshit.

Peace out.

Kevin Drum has no fucking clue what all women, LGBT's, people of color think. He is not their spokesperson and he is fucking clueless about what running a business is like. Clueless with a capital C.

...immediately precedes...

Black Lives Matter has even less clue than Drum.

go back to bed. you're still drunk.

It's Obama's fault, of course. Oy vey...

hsh, You don't have to be blind, you have to be poor, white and working.

To think that minorities get all the breaks? Is that how it works? Do all poor, working, white people think this, or is it a necessary but not sufficient prerequisite for this belief?

"So, when you say privilege, I hear bullshit."

U.S. Constitution, Article I, Sec 9:
"The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."


Here you have a group that actively desires the absence of police, for all practical purposes,

FFS. talk about not having a clue.

""non-whites face particular problems and biases that are often subtle, often unconscious, and haven't disappeared yet."

Yes they do, and women and old people and people with a southern drawl and any of a number of other markers that have biases associated with them.


What I see is more overt racism and sexism in the workforce than most people understand. The wink, wink of hiring managers who know they will not hire a black, gay or woman (often this is dependent on what she looks like) is still a real thing and more frequent than people like to imagine.

Outside that cadre of assholes, the unconscious biases also exist, although often things like this article are confusing these underlying biases with more "practical" assessments.

For example, the poor communicator who is black is a greater risk in a consulting company, their success with the customer base is more questionable and they are often less coachable. Why are they deemed less coachable? Because they are being asked to communicate like "white people", which is often taken as insulting. There are many white poor communicators that fail, the question is who is more likely to come up to speed?

The point being this is not a subtle bias, it is perceived to be, and sometimes is, an actual limitation. In this case it is hard to determine where the line is between prejudice and the consulting companies legitimate interest.


Once you get past the few areas like that, the subtle biases kick in. Mostly vague uneasiness attributable to culture fit but in some ways the equivalent of the article. However, these are not limited to minorities and are frustrating for lots of people.

In Massachusetts the mention of an unknown out of state college can be almost immediate rejection, an observation I have made over time that no hiring manager would admit to except in reverse. (Well, BC that guy must be well rounded).

There are dozens of markers that effect the hiring process and often the minority candidate falls victim to one of those(a southern accent from a black person is almost certain to exclude you, from a woman gets you closer to a job, from a white male is a red flag. Not a great school?, It helps if you played a sport. I did watch a guy get hired once because the departmental basketball team could use a good player)

I have sat in on hiring decisions for a few thousand people, it is all just more complex than the article makes it out to be and the interviewer/assessor biases are incredibly more complex than "your black" or "a woman" or old. Although I will say old is almost always an exclusionary marker all by itself. Being LGBT is also as likely as old to be an immediate disqualification, (see not subtle above).

That's just in hiring. I could write another few paragraphs about things like retail store. In my younger days I worked with the security people following folks around the high end department store I worked at, one of my sisters is a manager at Family Dollar stores. But, I don't have the time.

So the answer is, yes non-whites, along with a range of other people, face particular problems and biases. The overt ones are declining generationally though not as fast as we sometimes like to pretend(IMO), the subtle ones do exist but are perhaps not as prevalent in some areas as attributed.

"Do all poor, working, white people think this, or is it a necessary but not sufficient prerequisite for this belief?"

Yes every poor, white , working person believes think this, and no one else does. Because all demographics are completely consistent in their thinking. But you don't have to be blind.

Do you think minorities get all the breaks, Marty? Why or why not?

Marty, your 10:59 is incredibly thoughtful. Thanks.

Great comment @10:59 Marty. It's absurdly difficult to escape one's own internal biases.

I think that minorities get to cut in line over poor and lower middle class whites pretty regularly. I think that the article bobbyp posted is really good discussion of the perception and actuality of that happening.

That article is a much more detailed explanation of lots of the cultural factors that have gone into the Tea Party and then Trump than the places I have tried to share my views here.

I find myself as appalled at the capitulation to living off of the government support by a wider range of poor people, and even people who don't need it, as the lady in the article seems to be. Her view of the evolving lack of shame is very close to mine.

"Because, compared to 36 years ago when I got my law license, there has been a huge f'ing change."

True. But are we saying there is NO resentment of that change? What accounts for the resentment observed in bobbyp's link, which Trump, an asshole, as you have observed, MCTX, is exploiting and riding the crest of? Are there other more salient reasons you (we) believe he is an asshole?

"And I got to thinking, why is it, if American is such a shit hole for people of color, why are so many of them coming here and not somewhere else?"

According to the ressentiment (listen to my pouncy fucking French, will ya) raging in the land among 40% of the electorate, to rape, pillage, game the welfare system, take our jobs, commit terrorism, and spread the gospel of the street taco.

"Here you have a group that actively desires the absence of police, for all practical purposes, in the very neighborhoods that call the police the most."

http://www.policemag.com/channel/patrol/news/2015/08/21/black-lives-matter-releases-list-of-demands-for-police-reform.aspx

That's a police website, as you can tell from some of the comments. For one thing, why would BLM be calling for body cameras if police presence in those neighborhoods was eliminated? To record their choice of donuts, as so many f*cking conservatives all my life might crack about these public servants when the former aren't calling for police pension cuts, but I digress.

Also, why would so many "responsible" parties, as cited in the article on the law enforcement website, concur with a number of the ten demands. Not all, to be sure, but still.

"Has anyone taken a vote of the single women and the elderly in African American neighborhoods to ask them how they feel about the police?"

Depends on where they live. In North Carolina and some other states, they may not have access to the polls because of recently enacted ID requirements. I can't think why that is. Maybe it's because most of them are going to vote for Hillary Clinton.

"It's a fucking embarrassment for women, gays and people of color to be recognized and touted for their skin pigmentation or their plumbing or who they sleep with when what got them where they are is that they could and did do the job."

Yeah, it is. Hillary slept with Bill (some (none of them fucking liberals) say she sleeps with Huma Abedin), we've been told, otherwise she'd be an ambulance chaser in some small American town, we've been advised.

But, who's doing the touting? I suspect it's roughly the same types who were touting their skin pigmentation, their plumbing (again with the plumbing!) and who they sleep with, in 1975, 1965, 1955, 1985, to denigrate their unearned achievements and lookee here, 2016, as white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and their fellow travelers come out of the wood work to police and hold a central place at Trump rallies.

"gays and people of color". Let's you and I go to a Trump rally, where, nearly all of the Republican base of recent decades is hot for resentment, and you raise your hand and use politically correct terms like "gay" and "people of color" and see what it gets you. You wanna fit in, which you don't, because you are NOT a Republican as the Republican Party defines itself this very moment, because you have better values than Paul Ryan and the rest of those filth ... you too Marty ... then you will use the retrograde language "faggot", "nigger", "wetback", ""towelback", etc etc, or you will be forcibly removed and physically abused for your politically correct speech.

Actually you won't because I will be standing there beside you physically kicking their f*cking racist asses in your defense.

"We are in a retrograde movement in race relations now because the PC "spokespeople" for women/people of color are surplus to needs if they can't find something wrong somewhere and blow it all out of proportion."

I look forward to some of those people losing their jobs, but not until the Trump movement (40% is not blown out of proportion) and its tens of million of republican adherents are shot in the face, and I mean that literally because I'm no longer interested in using delicate politically correct terms for what they deserve.

"An electrician is a good electrician regardless of color or gender and a bad electrician can burn your house down with you in it regardless of color or gender."

What about plumbers? Kidding. Here's what I bet. If it was a black, Mexican, or female electrician who burned the house down, (not yours, but too many), many white victims of the incompetence would never hire a black, Mexican, or female plumber again. If it was a white male electrician who burned the house down, he'd get full individual credit via the law (you know, those regulatory state) for his incompetence and the very next electrician called to survey the damage would be a white male, probably competent.

No one who I know, would say "that's it, if you want something done right, hire a woman, a black, or a Mexican, because those white guys can't tell the green wires from the red ones."

I find that at my age I can't mix red wine and spirits any longer either, because it causes killer hangovers. ;)

Also, what Marty said at 10:59. I'm old and immature for my age, which is two strikes against me.

One caveat to Marty.

This:

"I find myself as appalled at the capitulation to living off of the government support by a wider range of poor people, and even people who don't need it, as the lady in the article seems to be. Her view of the evolving lack of shame is very close to mine."

Yeah well, having worked for the government, you know, applying, being interviewed, and hired for a couple of jobs, for which I returned pretty good value, just like folks in the private sector do, the utter contempt that my colleagues and I are held in for the simple fact of working, is equal to the contempt that these same fucks hold for folks gaming the welfare system, let alone those who require the help.

To which I say, go f*ck yourselves.

You wanna get rid of this shame and the government programs, then the fucking private sector can feel a little shame too and pay a living wage and decent health insurance for all of their workers, stop gutting pensions, and stop fighting every fucking disability and unemployment claim. Stop firing and laying people off.

Until then, eat shit and pay your fucking taxes.

I haven't had a drop of alcohol so there is no accounting for my peevishness. Or maybe that IS the reason. ;)

I wonder if anyone has tried, recently, to do a reprise of John Howard Griffin's Black Like Me? It might be enlightening.

Things are nowhere near as bad today as what Griffen saw. But Marty et al might be startled at what kind of reaction they got if they tried, for example, to engage in "open carry".

And that's without the kind of subtle discrimination that happens in employment. Witness the repeated experiments where they take two resumes which are identical except for the name. Put on a "black name" or "female name", and suddenly the treatment changes.

white privilege is being able to run a racist-approved Presidential campaign around the idea that America is in the shitter - as opposed to being the subject of death threats from racists for saying America is in the shitter.

I find myself as appalled at the capitulation to living off of the government support by a wider range of poor people, and even people who don't need it, as the lady in the article seems to be. Her view of the evolving lack of shame is very close to mine.

This is what is wrong with your sentiment. If people need help, they should accept help, and try to make their own lives better, and make things better for their kids. If they don't need help, then they should stop complaining about the possibility that the government might help people who do need it.

And, by the way, "help" can be defined not just as cash support (which would be fine with me), but as education, training programs, infrastructure projects (to create jobs), better medical assistance, etc.

It's okay with me if people want to eschew "help". Fine. But get out of the way of making the country work better for others (in ways that, perhaps, have helped McKinney point to his anecdotal representatives of positive change). Societal attitudes have not changed all by themselves - we've worked for it. And we're a long way from being done.

because you have better values than Paul Ryan and the rest of those filth ... you too Marty ... then you will use the retrograde language "faggot", "nigger", "wetback", ""towelback", etc etc, or you will be forcibly removed and physically abused for your politically correct speech.

A very large part of our circle of friends are Trump supporters. Those are not common terms, although what we call Jihadists in polite company get pretty rough treatment. I will point out that Islam is a religion, not an ethnicity.

If it was a black, Mexican, or female electrician who burned the house down, (not yours, but too many), many white victims of the incompetence would never hire a black, Mexican, or female plumber again.

Not in Houston, where the majority of tradespeople are Hispanic. And the competence level is fairly high.

But, who's doing the touting?

The SJW's, for lack of a better collective term. They are the one's who value diversity for it's own sake, who openly reject merit as the dominant legitimate factor in any hiring decision and who tell themselves ridiculous bedtime stories about morons like BLM.

But Marty et al might be startled at what kind of reaction they got if they tried, for example, to engage in "open carry".

Not startled. Furious maybe, but not startled. The poor guy in MN who was shot for doing exactly what the law requires is the kind of extreme and statistically rare event that underscores Marty's far more lucid and balanced observations.

No one is saying all the problems are solved. What we are saying is that we are, and have for a long time, been moving toward solving them and this SJW/privilege bullshit is setting us back. It's divisive, intellectually lazy and ultimately pointless.

Which is not to say that anyone who F's someone over in a large or small way based on race, gender, etc doesn't deserve prosecution, litigation, termination, ostracizing, etc, as the case may be. They do. It's been the law since 1964 for crying out loud.

When do you think 42 USC 1942 was passed?

But "privilege"--how does anyone think this sounds to a listener, "you are white. as a white person you think and act in certain ways that are bad. you need to stop doing that. we will tell you how you need to think and act. please listen. because you are white."?

Bullshit.

$20,000,000,000 per year in farm subsidies sure help a lot of people complain about the evils of welfare and big government.

Marty, I apologize for singling you out in my 12:33 post. I should have kept reading, as if I had read your 10:59 post I would have known better. Sorry.

"towelback"?

See, I'm so liberal, I can't even SPELL the slurs correctly.

I also apologize for other incidences of my blogging aphasia, but this is what happens when I rant while sober.

Regarding shame, I simply do not get why folks with blackened teeth or no teeth at all would be shameful and resentful because the taxpayer runs a free dental clinic. Nor do I get the resentful taxpayers who want to shut the joint down.

I also don't get why a Tea Party member, as I saw quoted somewhere recently, would resent paying a little more for health insurance to cover the sicker people in their health insurance pools.

Apparently the sick are supposed to be ashamed too, for good measure, as a sign of health.

That isn't shame. It's brutal stupidity, of the sort acted out on train platforms in 1942 Germany.

McKinney, let me suggest an experiment to you. You list a whole bunch of women and minorities that you work with. Next time you talk with them, ask them if they think the whole concept of white male priviledge is bullshit.

Of course, some of them may be wary of giving you an honest answer. But the results may surprise you.

wj, no problem. I might be startled, or furious, or both. Or not. Who knows.

I think that minorities get to cut in line over poor and lower middle class whites pretty regularly.

I don't doubt that it happens. The question is whether or not that is the prevailing trend in the United States. I know people who think that it's generally, on average, overall, as a rule - or however you want to put it - easier to be black in America because of all the special treatment (the good kind) that blacks get. That's what my comment way up the thread about one undeserving recipient of Affirmative Action being worth 1000 recipients of white privilege was about.

But "privilege"--how does anyone think this sounds to a listener, "you are white. as a white person you think and act in certain ways that are bad. you need to stop doing that. we will tell you how you need to think and act. please listen. because you are white."?

Bullshit.

indeed, that is bullshit. also, that's not what 'privilege' means.

privilege is what society as a whole grants you, automatically - without you having to ask for it - simply because you're white (and male - twofer!). it's the pre-judgement that means you with your fine white skin and upstanding WASPy surname don't need to be pulled over quite as often, that you are better qualified for that job, that you are a better credit risk, that you can be an Olympic medalist and not have to explain what your personal victory means for everybody who shares your skin color, that you don't get automatically labelled a 'terrorist' when you kill a bunch of people for no reason.

But "privilege"--how does anyone think this sounds to a listener...

Of course, this was the entire point of the original post, unless I'm missing something.

They are the one's who value diversity for it's own sake, who openly reject merit as the dominant legitimate factor in any hiring decision and who tell themselves ridiculous bedtime stories about morons like BLM.

I'd say diversity does have value for it's own sake, but not that it should prevail over all other factors. In my experience, the people who are most likely to have really off-base, negative ideas about people who are unlike them in whatever way or other are those who have had little to no exposure to such people. There's value in being exposed to people of different backgrounds than one's own.

Then there's a question of why there is such a lack of diversity in so many areas, particularly in the higher echelons of political, social and economic life. Why did it take so long for there to be black quarterbacks and head coaches in the NFL, for example, when there had been so many black players for so many years? There has been plenty of progress on that front, but what about C-level executives in large corporations or the Unites States Senate? Where are they in relation to the progress elsewhere?

Sometimes concerns over diversity do overcome other legitimate concerns - sometimes wrongly. But, again, is that the prevailing trend? Do you really think that's what most people who express concerns over the lack of diversity in various areas actually want?

Look at this.

I think that minorities get to cut in line over poor and lower middle class whites pretty regularly.

Glad you enjoyed the article. I thought you would. It has some very good insights.

But....

Statistics don't lie. Blacks lag in wealth, income, education, on and on. Housing is as segregated as ever. They lag poor and lower class middle class whites as well.

It could be that there are some number of near poor whites "just above the cut line" when it comes to public benefits, so when they see EVEN POORER blacks get largess from some paltry government program, I guess they could feel the way you seem to....BUT THAT IS OBJECTIVELY NOT THE CASE.

Blacks are still, in aggregate, worse off.

Absent some other explanation, these differences come down to bias and discrimination.

So what do we do about it on the level of public policy? Nothing? Wait it out?

There is no doubt that progress has been made, but we have a longer way to go than many realize.

When we get to the point that a random sample of blacks and whites will pretty much compare across socioeconomic status, well, then I shall STFU.

But not before.

You know it is really amazing that when white folks are shut out from economic opportunity that they, too, exhibit certain social pathologies generally ascribed to "black culture" by all too many of the relatively well off.

How could that be?

indeed, that is bullshit. also, that's not what 'privilege' means.

That depends entirely on who is doing the defining. I've been called 'privileged' any number of times on this site, usually as a substitute to engaging on the merits, as if being a white, reasonably successful male is, in and of itself, a disqualification from holding a valid opinion.

The bullshit on campus these days supports my take on the meaning of privilege.

But, glad--and this is not me being my usual asshole self--and very glad that you don't buy into that version of privilege. That is appreciated.

As for your laundry list, you are simply enumerating some of the indicia of invidious and not-so-invidious discrimination that exists to one degree or another. However, I'm not aware of Asians being routinely pulled over. Or women. Blacks, maybe, but there are stats going both ways.

Blacks are still, in aggregate, worse off.

Yes, for a ton of reasons, but, if your thesis is true for "white" privilege, why are all minorities and women equally or almost equally bad off?

I'm jammed. I hate it. I'd rather engage here. Dammit.
I don't deny discrimination.

why *aren't* all minorities and women . . .

...but, if your thesis is true for "white" privilege, why are all minorities and women equally or almost equally bad off?

This is either a rhetorical question or a really dumb one. So I'll ascribe it to your being in a hurry.

I'm jammed. I hate it. I'd rather engage here.

Then you should. People are interested when you actually do. And you could start by addressing this, posed by bobbyp:

So what do we do about it [the fact that blacks are still, in aggregate, worse off] on the level of public policy? Nothing? Wait it out?

I mean, we need to figure out the answers to problems, and part of our failure to do so is that some of us have the privilege of not seeing them as priorities.

That depends entirely on who is doing the defining.

'But "glory" doesn't mean "a nice knock-down argument",' Alice objected.

in this context, 'privilege' has a specific meaning.

DocS's article here has a good explanation: not noticing (and not having to notice) that what is easy for you isn't so easy for other people.

other people are subject to all kinds of slights, discrimination, discouragement, and obstacles that you aren't due to your race, gender, whatever. it is your privilege to not have to face all of that; indeed you might not even know those obstacles exist for those other people.

you don't have to ask for it or work for it. from your point of view, that's just how life works. from one of those other people's point of view, you have it easy, because they do face all that crap.

However, I'm not aware of Asians being routinely pulled over.

me either. never looked into it.

Asians are subject to the same prejudicial resume screening that blacks are, however.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/17/jobs-search-hiring-racial-discrimination-resume-whitening-callbacks

During the two-year study, which was published in the Administrative Science Quarterly Journal, Kang and her colleagues sent out 1,600 fabricated resumes, based off of real candidates, to employers in 16 different metropolitan areas in the US. Some resumes were left as is, whereas others were “whitened”.

While 25.5% of resumes received callbacks if African American candidates’ names were “whitened”, only 10% received a callback if they left their name and experience unaltered. For Asian applicants, 21% heard back if they changed their resume, and only 11.5% of candidates did if their resumes were not “whitened”.

...

The researchers also interviewed 59 Asian and African American candidates between the ages of 18 and 25. Thirty-six percent said they “whiten” their resumes, and two-thirds reported knowing someone who does.

have you ever felt that you had to 'whiten' your resume in order to get a job? probably not. but not having to disguise your race is a privilege many Asians don't enjoy in this country.

It may be worth noting that, at least in some fields (IT springs to mind), Asians no longer need to "whiten" their resumes. But this is definitely a recent development; I can remember when IT was still pretty much a lily-white field as well. And it's definitely not universal across all fields of employment.

And still, so some degree, there is background whitening. I know one lady, given name (i.e. what's on her birth certificate) Mariko (her parents were immigrants from Japan). But she has been called Mary for as long as I have known her. Including things like on her driver's license, credit cards, etc.

Sometimes, whitening is so pervasive in your life that others barely even notice that it has happened....

I'm not sure what "worse off in the aggregate on the level of public policy" means?

Privilege or theft? Inquiring minds want to know.

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