The White Privilege of the Political Left

On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, 2018, I am prepared for a bunch of different things. For example, I am prepared to get sucked into a Twitter racist vortex, in which people with no lives will text the “n-word” a number of times. I also expect Lord Donny to post something insincere about MLK that he will not have written and which will be mixed with a series of “dog whistle” Tweets. But the most troubling thing I will expect today comes from the left. I fully expect Bernie Stans and other white liberals to post a meme or two with an MLK quote that they themselves won’t understand.

This kind of thing is distressing because too many people on my side of the aisle seem just as intent to undermine people of color as anyone else. Sure, they don’t want to “send them back” and they don’t want to lynch them, but the undermining that goes on at the hands of the unicorn progressives and the professional left is really thoughtless and stupid and it needs to stop.

Now that I have your attention, far lefties, let me explain.

If you think you can have a progressive country without electing Democrats to everything, you are truly delusional. In fact, if you think you can get everything you claim you want from society and still trash the Democrats you don’t like, you are exerting your white privilege, nothing more. And it is frightening as hell to think about all the white liberals I know who deny their white privilege, when they exercise it every day.

See, white privilege means we white people, by benefit of our skin color, believe we still have the power to demand whatever we want – you know, like “single payer” – and we will eventually get it because what we want is so obviously wonderful and right that the entire electorate will go for it. That is pure white privilege. It’s proof that we have never had to fight for anything in our lives. In fact, I’ll go farther. Every attack anyone make on Democrats or the Democratic Party right now is based purely on white privilege and nothing more. It makes me laugh when white unicorn progressives demand that everyone “fight” because they’ve had to fight for very little in their lives.

That is especially true of Bernie Stans, whose candidate isn’t actually a Democrat and who had his ass handed to him in the last election, even though his white privileged followers act like he almost won. (Here’s a hint, Bernie Stans; the nomination was secured on March 1.) And frankly, Bernie isn’t exactly a candidate who makes you look like someone who cares deeply about People of Color. I remember the time Black Lives Matter protesters showed up at one of his rallies and interrupted it and Bernie and his Stans reacted badly. Bernie just walked away from them and the crowd of Bernie Stans clashed with them. That was simply for showing up at a rally. They didn’t embrace the protesters, they rejected them and the message they were sending.

Take March 1. As noted, that was the day Hillary Clinton actually won the nomination. On that day, Hillary won a series of primaries in red states, not by 8-10 points, but by 50-60 points. In several states, Hillary won 80% or more of the primary vote. That was in states where the vast majority of Democrats were Black and they chose Hillary quite handily. Yet, white liberals who held onto the fantasy that Bernie was within striking distance of the nomination dismissed those wins because they happened in what they called “the old confederacy.” That is the epitome of “white privilege.” You think you can just dismiss black people because they don’t matter.

Let me clue you in, white liberals. Black people – especially black women – ARE the Democratic base these days. White people are the base of the Republican Party. White progressives USED TO BE the base of the Democratic Party, but Dixiecrats and white progressives left the Democratic Party in the 1960s. Therefore, if you, as a white liberal, are making demands of the Democratic Party and then holding your breath and stomping your feet when they don’t accede to those demands, well… white privilege has overtaken your common sense.

Not only are white liberals like The Young Turks NOT the democratic base, but they rarely vote for Democrats. Therefore, when a white liberal is basically telling Black people to piss off – something I see on a daily basis, by the way – they are not only being tone-deaf on race, but they are demonstrating abject stupidity, politically speaking.

 

I really hate to break it to other white liberals, but Black people don’t like us very much, and for good reason. While we claim to support them, we really don’t. White liberals got all into the idea of Barack Obama becoming president in 2008, but if you listened to them, their motivation was to screw with the Republican right wing. When they envisioned Obama, they saw Huey and Bobby, when Barack was closer to Urkel.

And when Obama came into office and didn’t immediately take a “screw the right” attitude out of the gate, they turned on him. Never mind that he has to prevent a goddamn depression; that wasn’t as important to white liberals as sticking it to the GOP. Consider the absurdity of the entire professional left going ballistic over President-Elect Obama’s choice of Rick Warren to lead the invocation during his inauguration. That spectacle remains the single silliest thing I’ve ever seen white liberals do in nearly a half-century of following politics. That was barely sillier than their hand-wringing over his choice of Tim Geithner to head the Treasury Department, at a time when the economy was in freefall and he was among very few people capable of understanding the instruments that brought the economy to its knees.

If you are a white liberal and you don’t understand  why Black people don’t like us, well, that’s your white privilege talking. Why would they like us? They finally got a Black man in the White House, and white liberals abandoned him before he even took office, apparently because he didn’t wear a dashiki and give a “Black Power” salute. What’s to like? Many white liberals also claimed he promised things he most certainly did not. For example, they still claim he promised single-payer and guaranteed a “public option, which he did not.

White liberals, it’s not enough to claim to support Black people. You actually have to support them. And when black people vote 93% for a candidate and you trash that’s candidate incessantly, well, that is pretty much the opposite of support. Also, getting a good politician elected is not enough; you have to support them when they are trying to do something to make the country better. The most important issue right now is Black Lives Matter. That movement is about SAVING LIVES, which is a hell of a lot more important than protecting meaningless buzzwords, like “Wall Street,” “income inequality,” and “single payer.” Hell; it’s even more important than climate change.

Get a clue. That you believe you have the luxury of attacking Democrats based on your pet issues, you are exercising your white privilege. Black and brown people are trying to survive, after all.


Also published on Medium.