Friday, November 28, 2014

What Nobody Wants to Say About White Privilege

Something that I wrote in light of the recent events in Ferguson.
The words “white privilege” taste funny on my tongue.
Heavy. Metallic. Even dirty.
I do not like them
I do not like the idea of being at fault for the actions of people who share an aspect of my humanity that I cannot control.

But this is not about me
This is not about my discomfort
This is not about the fact that up until now I haven’t had to think about my skin color
None of this is about me.
Because my skin color is the “default”

I haven’t had to face sideways glances from store clerks concerned that I am a thief
or judgmental glares from restaurant owners, or skinned knees patched over with band aids that are three shades too light
I do not have to wake up every day and think about the pigment of my skin and whether or not that determines my right to survive
None. Of. This. Is. About. Me.

I am privileged
But I am furious
And my rage in itself is a privilege
The fact that I can be angered rather than terrified at the atrocities and inequalities in our so-called justice system is itself a manifestation of my privilege

I am outraged, and if you are not then you are not paying attention
This is America
The year is 2014
And racism is real.
Enough of the denial
Enough hiding behind our privilege

If you say nothing,
And do nothing,
Then nothing changes.

So no,
This is not about me
But I am privileged 
And I am outraged

And I am telling you that something needs to change.

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