White and Without Privilege

Most of my friends would be considered middle class. Many have spent time in prison. I’ve been to more funerals of people I grew up with than I’d care to count. I had a job interview last weekend, I didn’t get the job. The Government recently denied me health insurance, mainly because I was honest on the application. Excuse me if I don’t feel all that privileged.

Growing up, roughly from ages 14 to 21 I was stopped by police without reason no less than over a dozen times. I was never treated with respect, given the benefit of the doubt or apologized to for the inconvenience. While I understand what is meant by the term white privilege, I believe the term is widely over used.

In fairness, I am also part Native American. I’m often mistaken for being of Spanish or Latino descent. A handful of those times I was stopped by police were directly related to how I looked. Whether it was what I was wearing or what the cop thought they saw when they looked at me. What I never did while being stopped was talk back, argue with the officer or do anything but comply. Even though I had done nothing wrong. I’d like to believe that is why none of my run ins turned ugly despite the fact society wants me to believe it’s because of the color of my skin.

I believe white privilege is a term manufactured by the powers that be to keep the wedge between us as a people. And by us as a people, I mean human beings with no special privileges. As far as I can tell, privilege is reserved for those with money, regardless of skin color. Don’t believe me? Ask Bill Cosby. I assure you if I committed even a third of the atrocities Cosby has, I’d rightfully be in prison.

I believe the only victims are those who consider themselves victims, which I don’t. I am responsible for the life I live. As we all are. It’s time we stop blaming each other for our own problems and instead come together to try to collectively solve them. We need to complain and blame less and start taking positive action. There is no doubt injustices that happen here in America everyday. They’re far from exclusively color specific though. They’re often class specific. And the upper class gets the last laugh as we instead point the finger at each other as they giggle all the way to the bank.

America operates off of broken systems. Broken healthcare systems, criminal justice systems, political systems, education systems, hiring systems and so on. More is broke than is being talked about. Probably because we’re so busy talking about race. The fact is, you will never change a racists mind. And I mean that for racists of all color because believe it or not, you don’t have to be white to be a racist.

Furthermore, I believe when we try to attach race to an issue that race has nothing to do with, we take away from the conversations that actually do. They lose credibility by default. As silly as it is to reference, I found myself in a so called Twitter beef with rapper Talib Kweli a few weeks ago. I was repeatedly called a racist despite the fact I said nothing that warranted such. People like Kweli who label anyone who disagrees with them a racist and blame their every problem on race, take away from the discussion. He brought race into the conversation, not me. Nothing I said was race related. Yet when it was all said and done, I had people of all colors calling me racist. Blind to their own group think and gang mentality.

I don’t care who stands or kneels for the National Anthem. Before you do, you should know The NFL began receiving checks from the Government after 9/11 to play it before every game and televise it, to increase patriotism. It’s a bought and paid for advertisement we’re made to believe represents everything sacred that we stand for. Our police, our troops, our right to free speech. This way, anyone who doesn’t buy in just comes off like an asshole. I’m sure plenty of people disagree with much of what I said and that’s fine because we need to be able to respectfully disagree with each other as well. Without letting those things we disagree on drive wedges between us and classifying the other as something they’re not.

Writing About the Human Condition, via My Thoughts, Observations, Experiences, and Opinions — Founder of Journal of Journeys and BRB INC ©

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