On racism and privilege: We’re all treated based on looks. That is not merely assumption it is a fact of life. Not even just race, fat, skinny, those perceived to fit the standard of beauty and those that don’t. The closer a person fits to the ideal—white, not overweight—The more of certain privileges they get.
We all need to take a look at our privileges no matter how small. That can be difficult for those that have so little they cannot see those things. I’ll use myself as an example:Though I may have a great grandfather that is a native, I have no idea of their struggle and have no rights to co-opt it.
I’m descended from stolen Africans and have no clue of the struggle of those living there now. Do I have my own very real and very American struggles—absolutely and those are not diminished by acknowledging the different difficulties of others in this biased racial and social economic hierarchy.
I even came to see it in former employment. I and 2 other coworkers compared our pay—The white girl with the least experience got paid the most, my pay was second highest over the co-worker that was the darkest skinned black women with similar experience to me.
I got the unearned privilege of higher pay based not on my skills or negotiation—we all took what was offered to us—but based on being lighter skinned and better fitting a social standard. That is wrong and only makes me a bad person if I act as if this doesn’t happen in many ways everywhere.
Oh and straight up stinkeye to people who come into a conversation about race with a damn chip on their shoulder because they are a “mixed” person that is light enough to be perceived and receive the privileges of being white. It is not necessary to say you should not be responsible for atrocities your ancestors committed. Just acknowledge you receive benefits of it and denounce it. Just as people of color receive the negative of their predecessors being on the losing end of that, what’s the damn problem with us saying we shouldn’t have to continue to recoup the negative from our ancestors? Don’t want the blame for them? Don’t accept the advantages from it like you earned it then.