Sunday, February 23, 2014

Guilty: born white, born male, born in America

The other day I was watching Downton Abby with my wife. One of the story arcs involved a budding relationship between a daughter of the aristocracy and a black jazz singer. It was a hidden relationship that was on the verge of being discovered and it was going to be scandalous. With Downton Abby being a period piece set in the 1920's who would be surprised that racism would rear its ugly head? But wait a minute... Just a darn minute... This was in Britain, not the USA. How could that be. I thought America was the most racist place on Earth. To learn that racism existed in England completely shattered my world view.

Once I recovered from the shock I started to think about the racism that really exists in America. Institutionally governments do not officially support racism - anymore. The fact is most institutions both government and non-government bend over backwards not to give even the appearance racism. Some go so far the other way that many white people lose out on opportunities they are well qualified for in favor of unqualified minorities. But who's gonna cry for the white guy.

No one is doubting that bigots exist across this land. African Americans are probably discriminated against every single day. That said, bigots exist across all lands everywhere on this Earth. Yeah, I know that's counter-intuitive for you living here in America since you've been told since forever that you are most racist, intolerant and nasty culture that has ever existed. Don't worry none of it is true, America is probably the most diverse and tolerant society that has ever existed. However, that does not fit the narrative the race-baiters want you to believe. Since the "r" word has lost it's punch due to over use the over arching theme that has found favor is that of white privilege.

White privilege says that due to the remnants of historical racism white people hold advantages in society that honor them over minorities in every possible scenario. Just like it's ridiculous to claim that bigotry doesn't exist, it's just as ridiculous to dispute the existence of white privilege at some level. Those of us who honestly go about our lives never giving in to the notion of white privilege because we don't personally condone or support it in any way still can't deny it's there. But beating whites over the head continuously with this sort of guilt trip is not going to help. People being people recoil when attacked, or lash out themselves. It would be far better to help the so-called privileged see where and if it actually exists in any given scenario.

Me being a white man I can't tell you what it's like to be a black man in this society. Who am I to say that they aren't discriminated against or feel discriminated against in any given situation. But to insinuate that I'm blind to white privilege because the way has always been paved with gold because of my white skin is dishonest, it's B.S. If I failed to become educated, failed to act in society with good manners and respectful language or committed serious transgressions that follow me through life I would expect to be discriminated against - and I would be. A white bum or criminal get's no special favor in polite society.

Every black man or woman I know who has done the things necessary to succeed has succeeded in their own right. Do they still face challenges? Probably. Who doesn't. I know a fine young white man who has worked really hard to become a fireman. He is now a qualified fireman and paramedic. He has been trying to get a full-time job as a fireman but has been basically told not even to bother trying to get on any of the big city departments near him. Why? Well because he's a white man. He looses out to untrained, uninitiated minorities and women every time. White privilege huh. But who's gonna cry for the white guy.

To think that somehow racism and prejudice is an American creation, born out of a legacy of slavery is intellectual dishonesty. African slavery and prejudicial bigotry against Africans predated America by centuries. So to is the notion that you can judge an entire race with such a broad brush and ascribe intellectual prowess or sloth-like values across the board. To think you can know what a person is like by the color of his skin - black or white - is ludicrous.

The idea of a colorblind society, the one that Martin Luther King dreamed of, died with the promotion of multiculturalism. Suddenly one culture was better than another and all cultures were better than American culture. At one time America was a melting pot of cultures that while excluding full participation of African descendants still included African culture into the booya. Today the multiculturalists have two views of white American culture, intolerant and privileged. The evidence is in all the text books school children are forced to read. Whites are guilty, Americans are guilty and above all men are guilty.

Things will never get better for a multi-racial society until multiculturalism is shown for the divisive and evil thing that it is. We are all in this together, let's stop the race-baiting, the race hustling and above all the bigotry of stereotyping any people by the color of their skin.