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Critical Analysis of White Supremacy and White Privilege in American Society

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Have you ever heard of the term white privilege? In case you haven’t, or if you’re not sure what it is exactly, white privilege is all of the societal privileges that benefit white people and that non-white people do not experience. If you are white, your first thought might be to say, “Well, that’s not real. I don’t experience any special benefits that non-white people do not.” But it is real and you do. When you are watching a film, you are able to relate more to the people you are watching because you will share the same characteristics as most of them, such as having the same skin color. According to Racial Studies, it says “recent study showed that, out of 100 films made in 2012, white people accounted for about 76% of all speaking characters while people of color, put together, only accounted for about 23%.” When you fail at something in life, like getting a job or getting into college, you don’t stop and think, “Is it because of my race?” White privilege isn’t something that you enjoy having, or that you can necessarily control, but it is important to understand what white privilege is because it most definitely comes into play in our everyday life, including, and especially, news and other forms of media.

The media has, for as long as it’s existed, upheld white privilege while at the same time stereotyping people of color. The biggest way that the media, specifically the news, does this is how they advocate white people’s accomplishments the same way that they advocate alleged crimes by people of color. White people have the privilege of being treated as individual whose actions are not a reflection of their whiteness. In the book it talks about White privilege involves media treatment of terrorist or mass murderers. It says “When a white Norwegian man, Anders Behring Breivik, murdered seventy-seven people on July 22, 2011, the media immediately declared him a “lone wolf” (Fitzgerald, 37). The media pretty much said the act was committed by evil intentions and the guy was not a part of any terrorist group. Many white people were not hurt by his actions. On the other hand if the same act was committed by a different race, they would label it as a terrorist attack. If a guy from different race committed that same address, his whole community would have to pay for his actions. When we hear the word “thug” we automatically assume to African Americans. There has been a lot of cases in the history, where the white people have committed some terrorist attacks. White people did the school shootings and they were labeled as mental problems.

Many white Americans are living with the fear that they didn’t really deserve their success, and that maybe luck and privilege had more to do with it, than brains and hard work. There are numerous reasons for the widespread discrimination at all levels, but the main reason for the existence of discrimination is a privilege to certain groups of people, and widespread social prejudice towards certain groups of people. Differences between people have always existed, but they gain in importance only when are different importance given to certain differences, so it creates privileges. People who are privileged in one society are often not aware of their privilege. It is very easy to be oblivious to the privilege. The problem of discrimination is very complex and there is no unique formula that would solve it. There are general patterns in a white supremacist culture, that all white people have privilege, whether or not they are racist themselves.

White privilege are privileges that are given to white people who they do not earn, it’s an asset they get; on daily basis just because of their skin color. I believe that the white privilege is the same as racism because the word white privilege itself explains it. It is privilege given and offered towards only the white people. If someone is given a special privilege because they are white then that is racism. I was born and brought up in India for almost 10 years of my life, so grew up around Indians. Growing up I never witnessed any white privilege. However, I was told to judge someone not by their skin but their behavior and action rather. Although, now that I know that the recognition of white privilege it definitely makes it better for me to understand my life here in the United States. America has had plenty of racial unrest, and what’s shocking is how we continue to ignore its side effects. Many people believe white privilege does not exist or it’s not a real thing even though America was built by white people, with a foundation for whites. White privilege is prevalent in America. They believe there is no way the color of someone’s skin, gives them a privilege. In reality, it does. No matter how much we ignore the fact, that the color of your skin can change the way you live, it’s true. It’s not fair, but it’s true.

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To completely understand white privilege you first need to understand what white privilege can do. White privilege can show immunities that white people benefit from on a daily basis beyond those common to all others. White privilege can exist without white people’s conscious knowledge of its presence and it helps to maintain the racial hierarchy in this country. There are many examples of white privilege. They range from people’s thoughts to people’s court cases, to actions. Basically to sum that up you have more privileges and fewer assumptions get made because you’re white. When majority of individuals hear the term privilege one thinks about the thought of something that is earned through hard work and respect, but is that the case for all privileges? White privilege is an advantage that white people have in society that is unearned and usually unrecognized. A decent amount of white people in today’s society do not even realize that they are born with this privilege. Throughout their lifetime they are taught to ignore the fact that there is an extensive separation between them and the minority communities. Until educated about the simple fact, the topic of white privilege is often viewed as the norm and brushed aside causing itself to repeat in history and putting whites as a superiority. Whites gain a countless number of unknown advantages through this privilege. All in all, their skin color does not work against them.

As a minority I am often talked down upon or looked over because of my skin color. I have witnessed many people compare minorities to animals and other offensive things that no human should ever be called or compared to. From what I have viewed of white privilege white people are not treated like they are white, they are treated like they are humans. In history the minorities have been hanged, beaten, and disrespected as if they are not human beings and whites in most cases view themselves as better than everyone else.

Whites also have the advantage of being able to love themselves and value their skin from birth and throughout their lives. Society, social media, television, books, etc. have always placed white women as beautiful over all other races. Media teaches women at a young age that fair skin, blue eyes, and European hair are the characteristic one needs to possess to. White supremacy and white privilege have existed for decades, because people have a mindset that one race is better than another. Both are associated with Whites, because years ago and today they are still seen as the dominant group in society, so they often have privileges that are based off the color of their skin. For instance, better career opportunities, better homes, more education opportunities, and more resources. In other words, Whites have more benefits, because of their race. Therefore, white privilege and white supremacy are similar, because they both allow races to believe they are superior to others based on their power, resources, and opportunities they can access based on their skin color.

White supremacist consist of people who have more power, so they believe they are superior to other race. White supremacy is a belief that people who are white are better than other races. White supremacy consist of people who believe they are better than others, because they are a particular race. For instance, wealthy Whites believe they are superior to poor Whites and minorities. Whites who are in powerful positions, have more resources, connections, and they have access to power, so they believe they are better than others who do not have the same opportunities and privileges. In addition, white supremacist believe they keep structural functionalism going. White supremacist believe without them society would not function properly, because they have all the resources and power. In other words, white supremacist believe minorities and other race groups do not have access to power, so they are not seen as people who contribute to dysfunction, so they need whites to come with their resources to keep society functioning properly.

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Critical Analysis of White Supremacy and White Privilege in American Society. (2022, August 12). Edubirdie. Retrieved January 29, 2023, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/critical-analysis-of-white-supremacy-and-white-privilege-in-american-society/
“Critical Analysis of White Supremacy and White Privilege in American Society.” Edubirdie, 12 Aug. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/critical-analysis-of-white-supremacy-and-white-privilege-in-american-society/
Critical Analysis of White Supremacy and White Privilege in American Society. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/critical-analysis-of-white-supremacy-and-white-privilege-in-american-society/> [Accessed 29 Jan. 2023].
Critical Analysis of White Supremacy and White Privilege in American Society [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Aug 12 [cited 2023 Jan 29]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/critical-analysis-of-white-supremacy-and-white-privilege-in-american-society/
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