The Myth of "Black Privilege"
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Politics and Activism

The Myth of "Black Privilege"

The Myth of "Black Privilege"

Privilege is defined by the Cambridge dictionary as “a special advantage or authority possessed by a particular person or group." There are many forms of privilege: economic, racial, gender, etc. While a person may have one type of privilege they may not have another. You can have racial privilege and be economically disadvantaged, have gender privilege with no racial privilege, etc.

In the United States, Black people make up 26.2% of those in poverty as of 2014, and white people 10.1% (UMich). 65.4% of people serving life without parole (LWOP) for nonviolent crimes are black, while only 17.8% are white (ACLU). Black people are 23 times more likely than white people to get LWOP for nonviolent offenses (ACLU). Black men are 3.5 times likely than white men to be shot by the police (New York Times). To provide a lens to these statistics, white people make up 63% of the population of the United States; black people are only 12% (New York Times).

Once I was told while white privilege was an atrocious misconception created by black people who just wanted a handout, black privilege was an ongoing problem in the United States. After hearing such an egregious statement I was appalled. To him, I say this:

There is no such thing as black privilege.

Black "privilege" is being told by society and by media, that your race is nothing to be proud of.

Black "privilege" is when people assume you are poor based on the color of your skin or the texture of your hair.

Black "privilege" is people assuming you are not wealthy when you are, getting pulled over for driving your own expensive car because it "has to be stolen" or being told in a store that expensive item is "out of your price range."

Black "privilege" is having individuals in your race commit crimes and get harsher sentences than white people guilty of the same exact crime.

Black "privilege" is having jobs turn you away because your name is too "black sounding."

Black "privilege" is having microaggressions try and beat you down into submission each and every day.

Black "privilege" is getting stopped and frisked for no reason other than your skin color.

Black "privilege" is trying to fight for equal rights for your race and being told to stop pulling "the race card."

Black "privilege" is having the media portray unarmed black people shot by the police as "criminals" with a record while a rapist is an "All-American swimmer."

Black "privilege" is suffering from discrimination based on your race.

Black "privilege" is being a minority who is not treated as equal to white people in society.

Black "privilege" is having the establishment avoid making real, strong changes to come closer to equality so as not to be "controversial" or " divisive."

Black "privilege" is having people say "racism is dead" and there are no hardships for black people because one man was able to overcome all those struggles and become President of the United States of America.

Black "privilege" is being illegally killed by a cop and having people try to justify it, even when you have no record and were "following instructions."

Black privilege is having individuals commit crimes after an injustice and your whole race or movement for racial equality for black people condemned for it.

Black "privilege" is fighting for equality for your race all the while being attacked, hated, and still a victim of institutional and societal racism, implicit and explicit bias, racial profiling, the problems in our police especially when it comes to race, and/or more.

There is no such thing as black privilege.

I speak the names of Trayvon Martin, Emmett Till, Tyre King, Philando Castile, Terence Crutcher, Alton Sterling, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Keith Lamont Scott, Eric Garner and more. HANDS UP (DON'T SHOOT) BEHIND YOUR BACK (I CAN’T BREATHE). Why won't you hear us?

“The new racism is to deny that racism exists” (qtd. in TI’s “Warzone”).

Will we ever be free?

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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