As a Black Person Thinking About White Privilege
White supremacy and white privilege have become un-spoken norms in American society. They touch every American’s daily life and are a topic of fierce debate in discussion circles. Racial roles and norms resulting from American White supremacy force American Black people into a contradictory role in the world as well.
Many White Americans get offended when the topic of white privilege is brought up. I suppose they must feel that it takes away from what they have accomplished for themselves. The thought that they have been receiving special treatment through their lives infects them with a sense of insecurity. Many White Americans fail to realize that American society is set up to ensure that the vast majority white skinned Americans begin life with more resources than people of color and are confronted with obstacles inconsistent with those faced by melaninated Americans. This trend is confirmed in the fact that in 2015 the average white American was 20 times the net-worth of the average melaninated American. Another example of White Privilege includes being to walk into virtually any career field and be accepted as a peer. It was not until recently negative stigmas such as the “frat boy” and “pig cop” started effecting White people. On the other hand, negative stigmas such as “Little Black Sambo”, “Sapphire Rush”, “Ugly Black Women”, and “perpetually Single Black Woman” have been used as a psychological weapon against Black people since the inception of the United States. Wealth in American society disproportionally held in White communities establishing a seat of power in White communities and seat of inferiority within Black communities. Black people are then blamed for their lack of success as if the fault is entirely on their part when American society actively works to ensure that they do not succeed.
All of that being said, there is a contradiction in being a Black American. As a Black American, American society places several barriers to ensure that you stay in your assigned race role (underneath others in society). Though, in a global sense, as an American, Black people are part of a Global elite class. The limited opportunities presented to Black people by virtue of being in America, are opportunities that people with the same skin color elsewhere will likely have.
It is evident that White supremacy and by extension White privilege enforce notions of Black inferiority when while at the same time Black Americans status as citizens in one of the world’s top societies leaves them with a confusing role in the world.