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White Privilege ?


BruceVC

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You guys won't believe this but I was accused of this last night  on that prominent radio station I listen to when I made a reasonable but critical assessment of the current status of the South African government 

 

Basically 2-3 people phoned in after me and were belligerent and upset and said " he is a white person ...he comes from a position of white privilege ...how dare he criticize the government ". Many people would have very annoyed ...but not me because I understand its coming from a position of frustration and ignorance

 

Anyway I want to phone back tonight and dispute this, I do recognize a degree of white privilege because I had a good education but people tend to embellish this. What would you say if someone accused you of this in a debate as a justification to dismiss your a point ?

 

I really want all views on this topic ? 

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Depends on context. There are some aspects of white privilege that I'm imminently aware of my being a beneficiary of. Like, I've never been pulled over for simply being suspicious. I've had very fair interactions with the police overall. In Texas.

 

And that's only what seems most obvious. I'm not inclined to think my experience and knowledge is comprehensive, there could easily be a multitude of everyday interactions that I get a much easier time of for being part of an assumed in-group due to my skintone.

 

If someone were to point one of these interactions out, I'd be interested in learning more about the situation.

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"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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Sounds like some people have an unhealthy view of the role race plays in their government.

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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Depends on context. There are some aspects of white privilege that I'm imminently aware of my being a beneficiary of. Like, I've never been pulled over for simply being suspicious. I've had very fair interactions with the police overall. In Texas.

 

And that's only what seems most obvious. I'm not inclined to think my experience and knowledge is comprehensive, there could easily be a multitude of everyday interactions that I get a much easier time of for being part of an assumed in-group due to my skintone.

 

If someone were to point one of these interactions out, I'd be interested in learning more about the situation.

 

What would you do if someone said that white Americans have benefited from historical abuse of Native Americans and built parts of the economy on the backs of black African American slaves ? And you need to recognize this ..would you?

Sounds like some people have an unhealthy view of the role race plays in their government.

 

Dude ...seriously you have no idea. You wouldn't believe the debates I am involved in....but I understand that is because of our past and the  impact Apartheid had, so I never question the validity of why people believe things. I just dispute them where applicable 

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Depends on context.

 

Very much so.

 

When dealing with police officers or certain employers (traditional industries), whites are somewhat privileged.

 

On liberal arts college campuses or when dealing with with certain other employers (e.g. in the entertainment/media sector), minorities are somewhat privileged.

 

All things taken together though, any racial privilege that may exist is dwarfed (by leaps and bound) by the advantages that being financially well off brings compared to being poor. "Rich privilege" is the only truly pervasive privilege in modern society.

 

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"Some ideas are so stupid that only an intellectual could believe them." -- attributed to George Orwell

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Depends on context.

 

Very much so.

 

When dealing with police officers or certain employers (traditional industries), whites are somewhat privileged.

 

On liberal arts college campuses or when dealing with with certain other employers (e.g. in the entertainment/media sector), minorities are somewhat privileged.

 

All things taken together though, any racial privilege that may exist is dwarfed (by leaps and bound) by the advantages that being financially well off brings compared to being poor. "Rich privilege" is the only truly pervasive privilege in modern society.

 

Very good point that actually, maybe I need to raise that the real privilege is wealth 

 

The issue being that many people think that all white South Africans are very wealthy and have trust funds ...so the  response will be similar to " well yes all white people are wealthy so we recognize that issue and they got rich due to the abuse of black people during Apartheid  " 

 

So sometimes I can't answer completely truthfully or it gets misinterpreted 

Edited by BruceVC

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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So SJ is now trying to carry the White Man's burden, to carry those less privileged towards a semblance of morality.

I truly find the idea of debating with people that believed that virgin blood would cure aids or similar intelligence level, pointless.

I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

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so, how did that make you feel when you were accused o' white privilege?  did you wanna defend self? were there a response you could provide that were convincing your detractors that your arguments were worthy o' consideration in spite of your unfortunate (HA!) birth? did you perhaps feel that you were being ignored for no reason other than the color o' your skin?  

 

we mentioned in the other thread just how counter-productive is the labels.  bring up white privilege or racism and it is so easy for the constructive discussion to die.  

 

racism exists.  hell, white privilege, while a silly kinda term, might exist.  but honestly, so what?  in most cases, the label is not helpful.  discuss recent events in cincinnati (attack of a white guy by multiple folks on july 4 or the recent shooting of a black motorist by a white cop) w/o having the discussion become one 'o white privilege or applicability o' racism is near doomed.  

 

HA! Good Fun!

 

ps in interest o' full disclosure, Gromnir has, more than once, felt irritation when we hear a bunch o' upper middle-class white guys take a moment while dining to be solving the problems in ferguson or baltimore over their prime rib or caesar salad. "they don't know..." when we start to think such thoughts, and when we feel the anger rise a bit, we needs check our self.  

Edited by Gromnir
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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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I find using ones privileges (member majority power in society, rich, healthy, full functional body, etc.) or handicaps (member of minority power in society, poor, sick, functional issues in body, etc.) as reason why their arguments don't or shouldn't count as very bad form of argumentation, although I concede that such have influence on how one sees and interprets issues. Reasonable arguments from one point of view, may look from another point view very unreasonable arguments. Which is why this kind arguments can be very unproductive and hostile. There sadly isn't easy answer how to solve such issues, as such bromides like "look things from other person perspective" are much easier to say than actually embraced.

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'X' Privilege is a classic leftist debating tactic. It's very clever - you win the meta-debate by defining the intellectual battle-space.

 

The counter is simply not to acknowledge it. In fact, throw it back in their face, explain what it is. A trick. "So I can't possibly have an opinion because...?"

 

It's one of those no-platform type, morally superior debating tricks you get on that side of the fence. By asking the other side to explain what it means, it makes them sound like even more of an extremist you'd choose not to break bread with.

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Also to answer your question - I'd just shrug and move on, no fertile soil for discussion with that person. Might be entertaining to have an argument, mind you.

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Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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Also to answer your question - I'd just shrug and move on, no fertile soil for discussion with that person. Might be entertaining to have an argument, mind you.

is best advice, but is it actual good advice?  you shrug and move on... to what?  chances are that the folks who brought up the white privilege angle ain't gonna just let it go. you can try and ignore the white privilege stuff, but if everybody else is wanting to address how your pov is inherently suspect, then the chance for meaningful progress diminishes.  use well-considered arguments and oft-quoted scientific studies to get back on track only takes you so far, 'cause the studies and statistics approach is gonna get you roped into trying to explain economic and educational disparities that will likely open you up to further accusations. so you shrug and move on, and is effectively silenced 'cause the debate is altered.  

 

in any event, racism is not easily quantified.

 

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/may/27/-sp-racism-on-rise-in-britain?view=desktop

 

is an interesting article, but the methodology were having folks be interviewed and asked to what degree they were racist.

 

...

 

anybody see problems?

 

HA! Good Fun!

"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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so, how did that make you feel when you were accused o' white privilege?  did you wanna defend self? were there a response you could provide that were convincing your detractors that your arguments were worthy o' consideration in spite of your unfortunate (HA!) birth? did you perhaps feel that you were being ignored for no reason other than the color o' your skin?  

 

we mentioned in the other thread just how counter-productive is the labels.  bring up white privilege or racism and it is so easy for the constructive discussion to die.  

 

racism exists.  hell, white privilege, while a silly kinda term, might exist.  but honestly, so what?  in most cases, the label is not helpful.  discuss recent events in cincinnati (attack of a white guy by multiple folks on july 4 or the recent shooting of a black motorist by a white cop) w/o having the discussion become one 'o white privilege or applicability o' racism is near doomed.  

 

HA! Good Fun!

 

ps in interest o' full disclosure, Gromnir has, more than once, felt irritation when we hear a bunch o' upper middle-class white guys take a moment while dining to be solving the problems in ferguson or baltimore over their prime rib or caesar salad. "they don't know..." when we start to think such thoughts, and when we feel the anger rise a bit, we needs check our self.  

 

I was surprised by the criticism because my comment about the government had been reasonable and logical 

 

I know what some of you may be thinking...." yeah we know how reasonable you can be when you give advice" but I am acutely aware of what is the best way to make a point in a South African debate so that it is not seen as either dismissive or condescending  ( on these forums I am less sensitive because  you guys  are Internet savy )  There are still people in South Africa  that cannot differentiate between criticism of the president and certain policies  and criticism of the whole ruling party and therefore this would be criticism of the new South Africa.

 

So they thought I was saying  " this country is f**d...you see black people cannot run a country ". Its complicated but that's the reality of debate in South Africa when it comes to certain topics. And thats fine...I have no issue with that 

 

Its coincidental Gromnir but this happened  just after you posted your informative view  on white privilege ....so I wasn't exaggerating when I said how that resonated with me 

 

And also I know you probably don't like me giving you recognition about things that you consider insignificant but once again your history and life experiences are relevant. You went through a fair amount of discrimination and societal hard times  and yet have have achieved success in a " white mans world ". And you still understand the big picture and what really matters in life and you can give advice. Thats very commendable 

 

 

'X' Privilege is a classic leftist debating tactic. It's very clever - you win the meta-debate by defining the intellectual battle-space.

 

The counter is simply not to acknowledge it. In fact, throw it back in their face, explain what it is. A trick. "So I can't possibly have an opinion because...?"

 

It's one of those no-platform type, morally superior debating tricks you get on that side of the fence. By asking the other side to explain what it means, it makes them sound like even more of an extremist you'd choose not to break bread with.

You see this is the correct intellectual response but this would be completely misunderstood and not seen as constructive in a normal South African debate 

 

And I'm not suggesting the people I  debate with are stupid ..rather they are less sophisticated  or have less worldly experience and when you make a point you make it clearly and explain as much as possible  

Edited by BruceVC

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Alternatively you could point out SA's GDP, infant mortality rates, rape stats, health iniquities and all the rest of it. Let the stats speak for themselves.

 

Yes I could easily if I wanted to make people feel even worse about the issues....the stats in this case are unhelpful

Also to answer your question - I'd just shrug and move on, no fertile soil for discussion with that person. Might be entertaining to have an argument, mind you.

 

Most white people don't bother because they get too annoyed by the uninformed vitriol and I understand that. Its frustrating if you always seem to be blamed for things because of your race 

 

But as I said I believe in actively being involved in the transformation of the country and helping people to grapple with things that being part of the global community mean 

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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wouldn't God almost necessarily be black?  God makes man in his image, and first man is from Africa, so...

 

plus, with john huston being dead, who other than morgan freeman could play the role o' God?  am thinking God would have prescience to consider casting choices.

 

HA! Good Fun!

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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

"Im indifferent to almost any murder as long as it doesn't affect me or mine."--Gfted1 (September 30, 2019)

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is best advice, but is it actual good advice?  you shrug and move on... to what?  chances are that the folks who brought up the white privilege angle ain't gonna just let it go. you can try and ignore the white privilege stuff, but if everybody else is wanting to address how your pov is inherently suspect, then the chance for meaningful progress diminishes.  use well-considered arguments and oft-quoted scientific studies to get back on track only takes you so far, 'cause the studies and statistics approach is gonna get you roped into trying to explain economic and educational disparities that will likely open you up to further accusations. so you shrug and move on, and is effectively silenced 'cause the debate is altered.  

 

in any event, racism is not easily quantified.

 

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/may/27/-sp-racism-on-rise-in-britain?view=desktop

 

is an interesting article, but the methodology were having folks be interviewed and asked to what degree they were racist.

 

...

 

anybody see problems?

 

HA! Good Fun!

Well, if this person is speaking to me, I move on in that I just don't bother with them. They can flap their jaws as they like, but I would just carry on with the discussion if involves others or just ignore them if it doesn't. They are happy to carry on their crusade elsewhere and I've no obligation or interest in changing their mind, assuming that is possible.

 

Could be very very fun, to wind people up though. Is a bit harder with race as you need to avoid sounding racist in the attempt. Is much more fun with atheists.

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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wouldn't God almost necessarily be black?  God makes man in his image, and first man is from Africa, so...

 

plus, with john huston being dead, who other than morgan freeman could play the role o' God?  am thinking God would have prescience to consider casting choices.

 

HA! Good Fun!

 

People have just understood bible's message wrong and god actually looks like sahelanthropus tchadensis, not homo sapiens   :devil:

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is best advice, but is it actual good advice?  you shrug and move on... to what?  chances are that the folks who brought up the white privilege angle ain't gonna just let it go. you can try and ignore the white privilege stuff, but if everybody else is wanting to address how your pov is inherently suspect, then the chance for meaningful progress diminishes.  use well-considered arguments and oft-quoted scientific studies to get back on track only takes you so far, 'cause the studies and statistics approach is gonna get you roped into trying to explain economic and educational disparities that will likely open you up to further accusations. so you shrug and move on, and is effectively silenced 'cause the debate is altered.  

 

in any event, racism is not easily quantified.

 

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/may/27/-sp-racism-on-rise-in-britain?view=desktop

 

is an interesting article, but the methodology were having folks be interviewed and asked to what degree they were racist.

 

...

 

anybody see problems?

 

HA! Good Fun!

Well, if this person is speaking to me, I move on in that I just don't bother with them. They can flap their jaws as they like, but I would just carry on with the discussion if involves others or just ignore them if it doesn't. They are happy to carry on their crusade elsewhere and I've no obligation or interest in changing their mind, assuming that is possible.

 

Could be very very fun, to wind people up though. Is a bit harder with race as you need to avoid sounding racist in the attempt. Is much more fun with atheists.

 

 

Something I never explained, I am involved in live radio debates. Now you may think " radio debates ....how significant is that " 

 

In South Africa its very, the radio and talk shows are what many people use to understand issues and to gain insight on political events  that you and I have known for years. So for example many black South Africans think still think that real Communism offers a viable form of government...and thats because they were influenced by Communist dogma during Apartheid.

 

I participate in 3 different radio  talk shows so I understand the slightly different ideological views of the people who listen to them. And I change my approach slightly on each one so as to not alienate people ...here are two. The first one is considered the countries most authoritative and carries much influence in the private sector 

 

http://www.702.co.za/

 

http://www.powerfm.co.za/

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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What color was Jesus? Its only been 2015 years since his death, why don't we have factual records?

Gfted1 I imagine you are wracked with "white privilege guilt " ? 

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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