Apparently, Discussing White Privilege with High School Students is "Indoctrination" and "Anti-White"
The other news networks reinforce the fact free universe of the Right by engaging the latter's distortions as truths. The lie of false equivalency has been disseminated down to the public as a type of common sense. This has hamstrung the American people's capacity to engage in critical thought on matters of public concern:
Superintendent Robert Crist says there is merit to parental concern.
“A lot of red flags go up in my mind when I look at the materials," Crist told Fox News. "Ideally, you would want to present one theory that might be way on the left and another theory that may be way on the right and if you find one in the middle you can present that too … now you have a well-rounded discussion, in my opinion."
There is a priceless irony when complaints about discussing the reality of White Privilege demonstrate the very fact that said concept is both true, and an accurate description of social reality. Whiteness is universalized and normalized in the complaints about Delavan-Darien High School's course on diversity in America.
Could it be that there are students of color who do not share these objections? Alternatively, could there be white students who are benefiting from an active discussion of the relationship between race and privilege in this society?
The language of "white guilt" and "oppression" is itself a reflection of the power held by the white racial frame, where any critical discussion of racial inequality is seen as "racist." Because Whiteness must always be normalized and protected in American society, discussions of White Privilege are immediately recast as unfair to white folks or a means to practice "reverse discrimination."
The beating heart of the White Right's complaints about discussing White Privilege is a sincere belief that white people are oppressed or somehow disadvantaged in post civil rights America. Such attitudes do the work of polite white racism and day-to-day white supremacy.
Polite white racism in the Age of Obama works by an inability of some to connect the realities of structural inequality with individual life stories. For example:
“This teacher has free reign to pick the material that he wanted to use,” she said. “He chose extremely radical left thinkers. He didn’t give those kids alternative information.”
The parent said last summer her son got a job washing dishes – working sometimes 10 hours a day.
“I was so proud of him,” she said. “And then to have a teacher tell you that you have these unearned privileges – that because you are white somehow you infringe on other people’s rights. It’s really just awful.”
Sometimes you can't make this stuff up. White Privilege does not exist because a white mother's son got a job washing dishes over the summer. The House that Race Built, and centuries of social and political inequality are quite literally washed away, because a white teenager got a job as a dishwasher?
His mother probably believes such a thing. I hope he knows better.