Privilege-Checking Is Now Considered Problematic

Can't win.

For quite some time, I’ve been hearing that social-justice warriors want me to “check my privilege,” but now they’ve decided that privilege-checking is actually problematic, too.

In a “special” to the Daily Californian, University of California at Berkeley’s official student newspaper, senior Efe Atali explains that not only is privilege definitely a huge problem, but also so is the way that people “feel comfortable in encouraging privilege talk.”

Atali explains that although it’s currently “considered progressive” for people to “publicly ‘check’ their privilege” to “become aware of conditions of inequality that benefit or harm them” as a means of “correcting injustices,” privilege-checking actually makes things worse . . . because  it makes privileged people feel super lucky about having things better than other people instead of making them want to help anyone else.

Ughhhhh! Those doggone pathological whiteys!

According to Atali, “privilege talk is about helping the powerful get more powerful,” because it “enable[s] them . . . to take more risks, enjoy dangerous activities and feel less guilt and more comfort.”

“Speaking openly about one’s privilege even helps sleep, because there are less troublesome unknowns remaining,” he writes.

#share#Although Atali did not cite any specific studies showing a connection between privilege-checking and sleep quality, he did claim that “three decades of checking privilege directly correlate with an astronomical rise in income inequality.”

“The more inequality we have, the privilege gets checked by more privileged people, and the more the privileged feel pleasure (and power) in being aware of their privilege and so, grow in power,” Atali writes.

#related#Just one question: If privilege is disastrous and bad and talking about privilege is also disastrous and bad, just what the hell are we supposed to do?

“I — like many on campus — care passionately about a kind of talk that is less about asserting one’s status and more about working forward without carrying indefensible and silly injustices along,” Atali writes.

Now, forgive me — but, to me, that sounds a little more like a meaningless buzzword salad than an actual proposed solution.

But what do I know? After all, I’m just an evil, straight white person who wants nothing more than to feel superior and know that I can have things better while other people are suffering.

Most Popular

White House

More Evidence the Guardrails Are Gone

At the end of last month, just as the news of the Ukraine scandal started dominating the news cycle, I argued that we're seeing evidence that the guardrails that staff had placed around Donald Trump's worst instincts were in the process of breaking down. When Trump's staff was at its best, it was possible to draw ... Read More

Is America Becoming Sinicized?

A little over 40 years ago, Chinese Communist strongman and reformer Deng Xiaoping began 15 years of sweeping economic reforms. They were designed to end the disastrous, even murderous planned economy of Mao Zedong, who died in 1976. The results of Deng’s revolution astonished the world. In four decades, ... Read More
Politics & Policy

O’Rourke’s America

With apologies to Margaret Atwood and a thousand other dystopian novelists, we do not have to theorize about what an American police state would look like, because we know what it looks like: the airport, that familiar totalitarian environment where Americans are disarmed, stripped of their privacy, divested of ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Elizabeth Warren Is Not Honest

If you want to run for office, political consultants will hammer away at one point: Tell stories. People respond to stories. We’ve been a story-telling species since our fur-clad ancestors gathered around campfires. Don’t cite statistics. No one can remember statistics. Make it human. Make it relatable. ... Read More
Economy & Business

Andrew Yang, Snake Oil Salesman

Andrew Yang, the tech entrepreneur and gadfly, has definitely cleared the bar for a successful cause candidate. Not only has he exceeded expectations for his polling and fundraising, not only has he developed a cult following, not only has he got people talking about his signature idea, the universal basic ... Read More