I am a partially Caucasian woman who can openly admit that White Privilege exists. Personally, I’ve never been given an opportunity or brownie points simply because I can pass for being completely White to certain groups of people. However, I am not naive enough to say that just because I haven’t experienced something, that it doesn’t exist. In a previous post I touched lightly on racism, and what it was like for me growing up between the lines. I’ve never truly felt as though I belonged in any racial group, and as such I’ve struggled with my genetic identity my entire life.
There were times that I thought I had overcome. I was happy to just be me, and not some label. Then, I’d have to take a PACT Test, or fill out paperwork, and I was always asked to choose: “White” or “Native American/Pacific Islander.” Even today, I struggle to rise above and overcome what society thinks I am, who I really am, or what I am. One question that seems so simple to most people, and for me I have three minutes to choose one racial identity, and forsake all others. What seems like one question, in all actuality is a thousand for me. A question, that even I can’t answer.
So, I know the pain of racism, hate, and bigotry. I know what it’s like to be called names for my appearance, to be mocked for claiming one heritage or the other. I know the frustration of just trying to live beyond what you are, and struggling to get in touch with who you are. Yet, those things seem to be sadistically intertwined in my life. I know a lot more than most people give me credit for. Just because I can pass for white does not mean that I am immune to racism and prejudice. I don’t know what it’s like to be a Person of Color. I don’t know your story. I don’t know your life. I only know that your pain is legitimate, and it must hurt when someone tells you that it’s not real. I know, baby. I know.
With that said, White Privilege should not be a means for attack on those of European decent. I’ve seen some disgustingly derogatory posts on Tumblr mocking women and men that are not of Color. Why? They’re White!
Racism is racism. I’m sorry. It does not matter if it is coming from the oppressors, or the oppressed. If you’re actively trying to hurt someone, you’re now the oppressor. You’re still wrong for belittling someone based on nothing more than the color of their skin. The objective of battling White Privilege should be to fight for the equality of all races, sexual orientations, and genders. The wrong way is to attack out of hurt, and try to divide based on race.