WHITE PRIVILEGE IS AND MORE

Inspired by @ListPrompts and @JennyJLee
  1. First, thank you @ListPrompts for being responsive and not just sticking with "safe" prompts
  2. I have always felt like I can most effectively speak about race and whiteness to white people, so here's my take on us.
  3. White privileged is a lot of things
    Especially seeing oneself as an individual, and not a representative of an entire group. White privileged is also the blindness (might I go as far as to say colorblind-ness?) to the inherent wealth that is passed on through skin, family, and perception.
  4. I would like to take it a step further, and talk about white guilt and witnessing whiteness.
    This is my jam. All day I've been wanting to pull out my college books and re read all of my essays. My favorite class all of college was called "Whiteness and Anti-Racism."
  5. But first, a story.
    My senior year of college, I simultaneously took classes called "Immigrant Literature" and "Whiteness and Anti-Racism." In Immigrant Literature" we read awesome books like China Man and The Invisible Man, and at the end we were supposed to research our family tree and write an essay about how our families and ourselves related to the characters in the books we had read.
  6. I am fortunate enough to have extensive knowledge of my family tree
    Another piece of white privileged... We can trace multiple strands of my family tree back to the 1600s when they emigrated from England and Western Europe to America. This means we were the whitest of the white, and while there were struggles, my family was never considered immigrants or other.
  7. I decided to write my essay about how I saw my family reflected the the rich, privileged white man--the antagonist in every novel read in the class--and white guilt.
    I had been learning about white guilt, and the sentiment that it is uncomfortable to see yourself as the person who has created and perpetuated injustices and inequalities (in my case, specifically my ancestors and the privileges I received from them).
  8. My professor called me to her office to discuss my essay. It made her uncomfortable.
    This white woman didn't want to write this ver honest and personal essay. She told me that she didn't want to make me feel bad for being white, and that I should work really hard to find a way to relate to at least one character. I thought this was disingenuous, and well as academically dishonest.
  9. I could have lied about my family tree just to make it easy on everyone--especially myself--but that's not how I roll.
    I wrote an excellent essay with lots of academic sources about whiteness. I wrote about how seeing myself through the eyes of PoC, especially immigrants, was so important and meaningful to me.
  10. White guilt is okay. It's okay to feel uncomfortable.
    It's really important! That is the only way to learn!
  11. We can move past white guilt on to looking at the parts of ourselves and society that we can change to end racially unjust practices.
    The reality is that only the people with power can make room, so white people have to give up the facade of meritocracy and let others in!
  12. I will end with a few resources.
    Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh: https://www.deanza.edu/faculty/lewisjulie/White%20Priviledge%20Unpacking%20the%20Invisible%20Knapsack.pdf Witnessing Whiteness by Shelley Tochluk(I have included a few questions from the book as a starting off point). The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alezander