If you are white, you experience and benefit from white privilege. This is a fact. No matter your social situation, there are societal advantages you have simply because of the color of your skin. Acknowledging your white privilege does not negate the other struggles you may face as a woman, a person struggling with poverty, a member of the LGBTQ+ community, a disabled person, or others who face myriad societal disadvantages. But recognizing your white privilege indicates that you understand that on a fundamental, institutional level, people of color are treated worse than white people and that our society is structured in such a way that white people — all white people — benefit.
If you for some reason need more proof of this in 2019, you need to read this Twitter thread. Writer and Twitter user @Freeyourmindkid recently asked white people to describe the craziest thing they have gotten away with because they are white. These are actions that would have been life-ruining for a person of color, but because the perpetrator was white, they were able to walk away scot-free. While this thread is eye-opening, remember that not every example of white privilege is this extreme. If you are white, you benefit from your whiteness is subtle ways every single day. It's time to examine this.
@Freeyourmindkid asked white people to share the "most outrageous" time they've benefitted from white privilege.
White people - What is the most outrageous thing that you've gotten away with as a white person that you know damn… https://t.co/NyCzF5Ywvu— 🇯🇲Black🇭🇹 Aziz 🇳🇬aNANsi🇹🇹 (@🇯🇲Black🇭🇹 Aziz 🇳🇬aNANsi🇹🇹)1553961472.0
All sorts of driving violations
@Freeyourmindkid #MyWhitePrivilege my husband and I moved from Utah to Texas with expired Utah plates for two years… https://t.co/DlCret6y4C— garbitch (@garbitch)1554241614.0
@Freeyourmindkid Called the police in Allston MA when I lost the key to my bike lock. (White) firefighters showed u… https://t.co/o202Ig4u0J— Adrienne Carmack (@Adrienne Carmack)1553973749.0
Spat in cop's face
@Freeyourmindkid As a teen I spat in a cop’s face when he broke up a party I was at and all he did was drive me hom… https://t.co/neWIkKPZRX— sav (@sav)1553964604.0
Kicking a cop
@Freeyourmindkid Kicking a cop after he threw me on the ground, and then getting in his face after I escaped my handcuffs. #MyWhitePrivilege— sarah (@sarah)1553963472.0
@Freeyourmindkid A LOT of shoplifting when I was younger: even when I was caught all I got was a slap on the wrist.… https://t.co/SlTJTzKYzV— Why Why (@Why Why)1553963779.0
@Freeyourmindkid Police raided my house looking for my black bf, just found me and my weed, tried to get me to put… https://t.co/v1OSs21m8O— Audrey Shapiro (@Audrey Shapiro)1553963222.0
@Freeyourmindkid #MyWhitePrivilege I gave birth in a hospital twice and everyone believed my pain and offered relief.— I'm Suzi Poppins, y'all! 💛 (@I'm Suzi Poppins, y'all! 💛)1553964955.0
@Freeyourmindkid As a white woman I can walk into any salon and a stylist of any race will be able to cut, color, a… https://t.co/eN2euEq5T9— Cindy Gross (she/her) #BLM #BefriendingDragons (@Cindy Gross (she/her) #BLM #BefriendingDragons)1553970589.0
@Freeyourmindkid When I door-knocked for political campaigns people usually opened their doors with curiosity, rare… https://t.co/S5OPIxZrjq— Cindy Gross (she/her) #BLM #BefriendingDragons (@Cindy Gross (she/her) #BLM #BefriendingDragons)1553971072.0
White boysSimply being a person of color in this country, existing as not-white, means you deal with a base level of emotional and mental distress that white people never have to contend with. This affects all areas of a person's life. Think about this.
@Freeyourmindkid Not really outrageous, but I had chronic headaches (later diagnosed w/ a brain tumor) and not once… https://t.co/q9wiZ1MGxu— Geraldine (@Geraldine)1553973712.0
@Freeyourmindkid I got caught stealing multiple times as a teenager and they never called the cops. They just let m… https://t.co/e1SJYzqge0— VoteForJustice ✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿 (@VoteForJustice ✊🏻✊🏼✊🏽✊🏾✊🏿)1553971725.0
@Freeyourmindkid Was pulled over for DUI, 85 in a 55, reckless driving. 16 total tickets, refused breathalyzer, we… https://t.co/kqoFNFsVe2— Rogue Pacer (@Rogue Pacer)1553965682.0
"Better choices" in youth
@Freeyourmindkid Re: mass incarceration, my white, conservative father said folks need to make better choices in th… https://t.co/DC1nKRkZ8y— Malfunctioning Factotum is AFK (@Malfunctioning Factotum is AFK)1553963325.0
@Freeyourmindkid I have a chronic illness/pain. Was at the ER because I couldn’t turn my head w/out pain. There was… https://t.co/32njB5ZLw8— Laura Jean (@Laura Jean)1554046811.0
Renewing a green card
@Freeyourmindkid Renewing my Greencard I was seriously taken from the back of a hours-long line & put directly in t… https://t.co/UoxrksiCpa— Tracy Facey (@Tracy Facey)1553964936.0
@Freeyourmindkid I was driving downtown and ran a stop sign in the middle of the night with no traffic around. A co… https://t.co/mpYgw1Jq6x— The Sassy Housewife (@The Sassy Housewife)1553961736.0
Reverse down off-ramp
@Freeyourmindkid My white friend reversed down a hiway off ramp because he took the wrong exit. I was freaking out… https://t.co/6ucHFAqp9n— GRASSI (@GRASSI)1553971746.0
Using hotel bathroomsAnother one you probably don't think about. There are whole spaces where you can't exist as a POC without being questioned. Need any more evidence that white privilege is real? Because oh, there are more stories.
No license or registration
@Freeyourmindkid pulled over for texting and driving. had no license or registration. i’m not saying i didn’t have… https://t.co/RyCceh1izH— gh (@gh)1554073549.0
@Freeyourmindkid Purchased pants w/ security tag hidden in pocket, hardly noticeable, they forgot to remove. Took m… https://t.co/wVbdlyUX1e— Tom Roberts 〽️ (@Tom Roberts 〽️)1553965300.0
Rented a condo
@Freeyourmindkid Where to begin? I recently rented a condo with no job, do there is that.— itripped (@itripped)1553961823.0
No ID at the airportHer library card. She was allowed on a plane with her library card as her ID. What a crazy time that must have been.
@Freeyourmindkid I got caught smoking weed in my parked car with a teacher from my high school who was also my secr… https://t.co/0hwEbJCgI2— The Volatile Mermaid (@The Volatile Mermaid)1554204830.0
White in the militaryI can't imagine what it would be like to be black and a woman in the military. This is disgusting on so many levels.
Openly smoking weed
@Freeyourmindkid Openly smoking grass for decades. Never ticketed or arrested. Once was asked to leave a bar in NYC. Once.— Jimmy Donato (@Jimmy Donato)1553961863.0
Apologies from a cop
@Freeyourmindkid Last week I got a speeding ticket. I argued with the cop(speed limit recently changed), told him t… https://t.co/ne4l07Dz8N— Ashley (@Ashley)1553971387.0
Clear as day
@Freeyourmindkid Got pulled over and kept my hands visible, on the wheel. Asked the cop for permission to reach int… https://t.co/81T9FbNVK6— Barbara Gregory ❄❄ (@Barbara Gregory ❄❄)1553969110.0
Treatment and empathy
@Freeyourmindkid As a violently angry child in public school I was provided with treatment and empathy instead of g… https://t.co/KVy9QkXtCG— Liz ACAB Estey (@Liz ACAB Estey)1553974343.0