Post #11: Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person

floyd-trailer-park

Today’s post is a companion piece to yesterday’s Post #10: White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack. I feel as a person who has benefited from being a white, middle class, educated, US citizen it is my obligation to understand how taking any one of those attributes away could vastly change how I experience life in this country. And so I am sharing this article with you.

When I first heard about White Privilege a few years ago, my reaction was kind of the same as this author’s. But I actually read her article first, then had to follow the links to truly understand what she was talking about. Gina gives several links that give a broader definition to those who may not be familiar with all the terminology. So be certain to explore deeper if any of this doesn’t fully make sense to you.

Gina’s essay explains further how we experience white privilege, even if we don’t realize it, and also how that white privilege isn’t the same for all. Many factors can alter how it affects you. Seriously, if you read one of my Lent Posts this year, this is the one.

Gina Crosley-Corcoran: Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person

Lenten Challenge 2016
Post #2: Coming Out Again, and Again, and Again . . .
Post #3: Dalia Mogahed and why she wears a hijab
Post #4: Why diversity in Children’s Literature really Matters
Post #5: The Emotional Toll of Growing Up Black in America
Post #6: Picture from the Box
Post #7: Diversity 101
Post #8: Study examines television, diversity and self-esteem
Post #9: Growing up Muslim in America
Post #10: White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

 

Post #10: White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

Peggy McIntosh - associate director of Wellesley College Center for Research on Women & Founder and Co-Director of the National SEED Project

Peggy McIntosh – associate director of Wellesley College Center for Research on Women & Founder and Co-Director of the National SEED Project

“Whites are taught to think of their lives as morally neutral, normative, and average, and also ideal, so that when we work to benefit others, this is seen as work that will allow them to be more like us.” – Elizabeth Minnich

So I’ve been saving this one. There are those among my followers (Facebook, Twitter, blog) who I think desperately need to read this. There are those who may have already. But I fear many are not ready. Their hearts and minds are not open enough.

Of course, that’s not all of you.

So I challenge my readers, whether the title (maybe especially if the title) offends you, concerns you, gives you that creeping feeling of guilt or denial or fear, please read this.

Digest it. Think about it. Apply the list to your life in general terms. We aren’t talking specifics here. We’re talking “I can pretty much be assured on a normal day . . .”

Maybe think about how this list doesn’t apply to some people, and why. How this affects them, their lives, how they see the world and colors their everyday interactions.

Think about it some more and maybe talk with others. Push down that tendency to get offended and feel attacked. Remind yourself, you’re not being attacked. You are being given a chance to grow.

For what good is life if we are unable to learn from those around us?

Peggy McIntosh: White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

To learn more about Peggy McIntosh here is her Wikipedia page.

Lenten Challenge 2016
Post #2: Coming Out Again, and Again, and Again . . .
Post #3: Dalia Mogahed and why she wears a hijab
Post #4: Why diversity in Children’s Literature really Matters
Post #5: The Emotional Toll of Growing Up Black in America
Post #6: Picture from the Box
Post #7: Diversity 101
Post #8: Study examines television, diversity and self-esteem
Post #9: Growing up Muslim in America