Phrases like ‘white privilege’ only further divide us

Submitted by Carrie Peters
Posted 9/15/20

Dear Editor:

I am writing in regard to responses to Becky French’s recent letter to the editor.

After reading his letter, I am quite thankful that Morgan Tyree, also isn’t a college …

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Phrases like ‘white privilege’ only further divide us

Posted

Dear Editor:

I am writing in regard to responses to Becky French’s recent letter to the editor.

After reading his letter, I am quite thankful that Morgan Tyree, also isn’t a college president. If he were, students at his institution would be subjected to continued racist thoughts, stereotypes, and judgment.

Whether you want to believe this fact or not, Morgan, racism is a two-way street. Please tell me how use of the term “white privilege” is not inherently racist? You specifically state, directly to French, “Whatever racism you have experienced in your privileged life, I guarantee you it pales — pales, I say — compared to what the average minority has experienced in the same country that you’re so red-white-and-blue proud of.”

And what, exactly, do you know of her personally to make such a judgment? What do you know of her story and life experiences? French never said racism didn’t exist, she simply said it’s not systemic throughout our entire country as some people want to believe and promote. She specifically said, “Do troubling instances of racism still take place that need to be addressed? Yes. But people the world over are coming to the USA to escape systemic discrimination. Our history isn’t perfect, but we have come a long, long way, and we are far and away the best country in the world for those seeking the freedom and opportunity to realize their dreams, no matter their ethnicity, gender or skin color.”

Whatever color of political Kool-Aid you drink, Morgan, the statement French makes is true. The United States is not perfect — never will be — but to ignore the fact that we have changed, and continue to change, for the better when it comes to racism and other injustices is to deny reality. You mention that you believe we are doing a “paltry better job” here in the U.S. If you think the U.S. is so bad, why do you live here?

I am tired of people continuing to inform me that, because I’m white, I’m automatically racist and privileged … but that I’m simply too shortsighted and narrow-minded to know it. I’ve never heard a more racist statement in my life.

I can easily say that I’m not racist. And no, Alexis Lundin, it’s not a “logical fallacy” for me to say that. I’m not a perfect person — I’m a deeply flawed human being — and people could say a lot of things about me and use a lot of words to describe me and I’d deserve it … but “racist” is NOT one of them.

I love how this new “politically correct” buzzword has now become the trendy thing to say — and yet, if you really think about the words and how they’re being used, it’s just an ugly racist stereotype. Nobody has the right to say I’m a racist, or that anybody else is, when they don’t know a thing about them other than that they happen to be white. Tell me, Morgan and Alexis, why should my children be made to feel guilty for being white? Is that not the same ignorant, bigoted mindset that goes the other way?

The more people choose to use phrases like “white privilege” to accuse, shame and guilt white people who are not racist, the more the real problem of racism persists in our country. Instead of unifying, such talk only further divides us.

Carrie Peters

Powell

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