Saturday, February 8, 2014

Does White Privilege Exist ? You Bet !

During the recent Duck Dynasty episode one of the main character said some things about racial relations in his youth that had many people scratching their heads. It is too bad in the internet social media damning culture an opportunity was lost for the most part to discuss that.

On one level I sort of get what I think Phil Robertson was trying to talk about .See In Praise Of Phil Robertson’s American Wilderness .

Some of what I THINK Robertson was trying to get at I have seen discussed by  many black people of his generation.

I also get that Phil Robertson like all of us at a certain age start having a good bit of confirmation bias about the good ole days. Add to this there appears to be some real wounds dealing with class and economics as to Phil Robertson. that no doubt really play a part. In fact I think that play a huge role in many of us thinking any concept of white privilege is a myth.

Those complex issues got swept aside and in this overly political world yet another opportunity was lost to talk about issues from both a Christian and secular actor point of view.

It does not help matters that SOME  that bring up the issue of " white privilege " are causing more damage than good. Instead of a opportunity for discussion it is used as a hammer  of raw power. Sit down shut up as it were your views are not valid .

This gets more troublesome when the issue of white , Christian , or religious , or male , or heterosexual ( the list seems never ending ) is used to try to blacklist as illegitimate a wide variety of political, social , and indeed economic theory  or views. To be blunt some use the invocation of " x " privilege to take a lot off the table of discourse and possible solutions,.

It fact what is perhaps the most troubling is often  invocation of the " x " privilege argument by is causing some major damage to civil rights protections , due process protections  ,  and First Amendment protections and values.

Still it exist and Christians have a special responsibility to deal with it. We should not  let abuses of the complaints about " privilege " blind us to the fact that in many cases it exists.

Which brings me to an excellent post by Anthony Bradley an African American Professor at Kings College  and who blogs at the Action Inst. See his post No Racial Reconciliation Without Intersectionality and Privilege

I think Prof Bradley hits some points right on  and I think especially as people of Faith  we need to look at them.

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