Op-Ed: It wasn’t luck that allowed me to become a judge after meth addiction. It was white privilege – and a lack of public pressure to do better.
Every now and then, the story of a “failed life” comes to light. Usually it’s a story of failure in life, perhaps in a romantic relationship, a family squabble, or some other kind of situation.
This happens in the context of a story about white privilege.
When it comes to white privilege, not all whites are judged to be guilty until proven innocent. Often, there are several explanations for the outcome of a white life that aren’t necessarily “bad” or “wrong” at all.
“White privilege and racism” is the term that is often used when white people are judged for the outcomes of their lives.
But a white life does not exist in a vacuum. It is built out of specific experiences and circumstances, like poverty and discrimination, that white people have at greater rates than people of other races.
I am white. But I have had my fair share of challenges, like learning to speak in third, Spanish, or not having the same kind of economic opportunities that my white peers have had. I have also experienced racism and discrimination many times in my life, including when I lived in inner city Oakland.
I know firsthand how racism can be experienced in a white person’s life. I also know how white privilege can be experienced. But white privilege doesn’t make you responsible for negative outcomes in your life.
I know that my white privilege has allowed me to overcome certain obstacles and become the person I am today. And I know that my white privilege has allowed me to rise above some situations and have more opportunities to succeed in life.
For me, my white privilege has been a source of strength as I’ve navigated the various challenges I’ve faced in my life.
It’s easy for white people to blame racism for a negative outcome in their life, especially when the challenge may be internalization of oppression (like racism). Rac