Checking My Privilege

feb9e01dbe785d17fe46e8cfd73f881eOriginally published by the The Princeton Tory.

There is a phrase that floats around college campuses, Princeton being no exception, that threatens to strike down opinions without regard for their merits, but rather solely on the basis of the person that voiced them. “Check your privilege,” the saying goes, and I have been reprimanded by it several times this year. The phrase, handed down by my moral superiors, descends recklessly, like an Obama-sanctioned drone, and aims laser-like at my pinkish-peach complexion, my maleness, and the nerve I displayed in offering an opinion rooted in a personal Weltanschauung. “Check your privilege,” they tell me in a command that teeters between an imposition to actually explore how I got where I am, and a reminder that I ought to feel personally apologetic because white males seem to pull most of the strings in the world.

I do not accuse those who “check” me and my perspective of overt racism, although the phrase, which assumes that simply because I belong to a certain ethnic group I should be judged collectively with it, toes that line. But I do condemn them for diminishing everything I have personally accomplished, all the hard work I have done in my life, and for ascribing all the fruit I reap not to the seeds I sow but to some invisible patron saint of white maleness who places it out for me before I even arrive. Furthermore, I condemn them for casting the equal protection clause, indeed the very idea of a meritocracy, as a myth, and for declaring that we are all governed by invisible forces (some would call them “stigmas” or “societal norms”), that our nation runs on racist and sexist conspiracies. Forget “you didn’t build that;” check your privilege and realize that nothing you have accomplished is real.

But they can’t be telling me that everything I’ve done with my life can be credited to the racist patriarchy holding my hand throughout my years of education and eventually guiding me into Princeton. Even that is too extreme. So to find out what they are saying, I decided to take their advice. I actually went and checked the origins of my privileged existence, to empathize with those whose underdog stories I can’t possibly comprehend. I have unearthed some examples of the privilege with which my family was blessed, and now I think I better understand those who assure me that skin color allowed my family and I to flourish today.

Perhaps it’s the privilege my grandfather and his brother had to flee their home as teenagers when the Nazis invaded Poland, leaving their mother and five younger siblings behind, running and running until they reached a Displaced Persons camp in Siberia, where they would do years of hard labor in the bitter cold until World War II ended. Maybe it was the privilege my grandfather had of taking on the local Rabbi’s work in that DP camp, telling him that the spiritual leader shouldn’t do hard work, but should save his energy to pass Jewish tradition along to those who might survive. Perhaps it was the privilege my great-grandmother and those five great-aunts and uncles I never knew had of being shot into an open grave outside their hometown. Maybe that’s my privilege.

Or maybe it’s the privilege my grandmother had of spending weeks upon weeks on a death march through Polish forests in subzero temperatures, one of just a handful to survive, only to be put in Bergen-Belsen concentration camp where she would have died but for the Allied forces who liberated her and helped her regain her health when her weight dwindled to barely 80 pounds.

Perhaps my privilege is that those two resilient individuals came to America with no money and no English, obtained citizenship, learned the language and met each other; that my grandfather started a humble wicker basket business with nothing but long hours, an idea, and an iron will—to paraphrase the man I never met: “I escaped Hitler. Some business troubles are going to ruin me?” Maybe my privilege is that they worked hard enough to raise four children, and to send them to Jewish day school and eventually City College.

Perhaps it was my privilege that my own father worked hard enough in City College to earn a spot at a top graduate school, got a good job, and for 25 years got up well before the crack of dawn, sacrificing precious time he wanted to spend with those he valued most—his wife and kids—to earn that living. I can say with certainty there was no legacy involved in any of his accomplishments. The wicker business just isn’t that influential.Now would you say that we’ve been really privileged? That our success has been gift-wrapped?

That’s the problem with calling someone out for the “privilege” which you assume has defined their narrative. You don’t know what their struggles have been, what they may have gone through to be where they are. Assuming they’ve benefitted from “power systems” or other conspiratorial imaginary institutions denies them credit for all they’ve done, things of which you may not even conceive. You don’t know whose father died defending your freedom. You don’t know whose mother escaped oppression. You don’t know who conquered their demons, or may still conquering them now.

The truth is, though, that I have been exceptionally privileged in my life, albeit not in the way any detractors would have it.
It has been my distinct privilege that my grandparents came to America. First, that there was a place at all that would take them from the ruins of Europe. And second, that such a place was one where they could legally enter, learn the language, and acclimate to a society that ultimately allowed them to flourish.

It was their privilege to come to a country that grants equal protection under the law to its citizens, that cares not about religion or race, but the content of your character.

It was my privilege that my grandfather was blessed with resolve and an entrepreneurial spirit, and that he was lucky enough to come to the place where he could realize the dream of giving his children a better life than he had.

But far more important for me than his attributes was the legacy he sought to pass along, which forms the basis of what detractors call my “privilege,” but which actually should be praised as one of altruism and self-sacrifice. Those who came before us suffered for the sake of giving us a better life. When we similarly sacrifice for our descendents by caring for the planet, it’s called “environmentalism,” and is applauded. But when we do it by passing along property and a set of values, it’s called “privilege.” (And when we do it by raising questions about our crippling national debt, we’re called Tea Party radicals.) Such sacrifice of any form shouldn’t be scorned, but admired.

My exploration did yield some results. I recognize that it was my parents’ privilege and now my own that there is such a thing as an American dream which is attainable even for a penniless Jewish immigrant.

I am privileged that values like faith and education were passed along to me. My grandparents played an active role in my parents’ education, and some of my earliest memories included learning the Hebrew alphabet with my Dad. It’s been made clear to me that education begins in the home, and the importance of parents’ involvement with their kids’ education—from mathematics to morality—cannot be overstated. It’s not a matter of white or black, male or female or any other division which we seek, but a matter of the values we pass along, the legacy we leave, that perpetuates “privilege.” And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Behind every success, large or small, there is a story, and it isn’t always told by sex or skin color. My appearance certainly doesn’t tell the whole story, and to assume that it does and that I should apologize for it is insulting. While I haven’t done everything for myself up to this point in my life, someone sacrificed themselves so that I can lead a better life. But that is a legacy I am proud of.

I have checked my privilege. And I apologize for nothing.

Tal Fortgang is a freshman from New Rochelle, NY. He plans to major in either History or Politics. He can be reached at talf@princeton.edu.

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  • C.Gee

    Bravo – and good luck standing against the uni-mind.

  • Judahlevi

    All of this will be completely ignored by the left with the comment that the author is just a “white male.” This comment is racist and sexist, but double standards never bother leftists. They can be racists and sexists if their cause is just.

    Character is an individual trait, not a group trait. When Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said he wanted his children judged “not by the color of their skin, but by their character” he was correct.

    Now the left wants us judged by the color of our skin or our gender, but not our character. These are the upside down values of the left which cannot possibly be valid. They never get anything right.

    It is the character (mind) of each individual that defines them, not their skin color or gender.

    • kikorikid

      It is Diversity Ideology that has posited that,”If White, Then Racist”.
      The Diversity minions combine this with Affirmative Action and, voila!,
      you have a scheme of oppression. White-Males have been targeted
      and discriminated against heavily for the past twenty years.
      It is a Racial Tyranny. Up to now they could simply keep you
      from getting the job. Now they will confront a White-Male standing
      in line and run him off screaming,”check your privilege”.
      This will take away scrutiny of Black, Brown, and Feminist privilege
      under Affirmative Action. For White-Males there is NO EQUAL
      PROTECTION under the Law.

    • Joseph D

      Why are there vastly more male mathematicians and engineers than female? If you found yourself unconscious and in a burning building, who would you prefer the fire fighter that will throw you over their shoulder and carry you down a ladder be — a 200 lb male or a 120 lb female?

      Are the police or airport screeners ever justified in profiling?

      Oh but your 1960′s lingo sounds good. It was all the rage of college professors back then.

      • Judahlevi

        The problem with your thinking is that you continue to group people and assign values. It doesn’t matter how many individuals are mathematicians or engineers unless you are counting by group.

        The truth is that each individual is unique and each individual creates diversity. This is certainly not what universities teach today.

        • MrUniteUs1

          Hear Hear Judalevi

    • MrUniteUs1

      Just a “white male” or a Jewish male. White privilege or Jewish privilege. Tal and other right wing Jews have the ugly habit of playing the blacky whitey race card, then hiding behind the oppression of their ancestors.
      Shame on them.

      • Joe The Gentile

        I am pleased to observe that this troll is receiving little feed this time so far. Many intelligent writers on frontpage feed the trolls.

  • SCREW SOCIALISM

    Tell socialists to check their Red Privilege.

    • 1stworlder

      They actually have watermelon privilege, green on the outside red on the inside.

      • Dyer’s Eve

        In Australia, they’re a political party called the Greens.

        • 1stworlder

          I meant green as enviroterror red as commie

  • TheOrdinaryMan

    I’m going to print this article out and put it up on my bulletin board. Very inspirational, and if anyone is “offended” by it, too bad–they should have their heads examined. Princeton University? Political Science? Good luck against The Borg, Mr. Tal.

  • Joe The Gentile

    Yes, we need a quick answer to ‘Check your privilege’. How about ‘No, why don’t YOU check my privilege and determine how much is earned through hard work and sacrifice by me, my parents and my forebears?’

    • 1stworlder

      I say DNA & evolution are my privilege.

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        Guarantee Equal Opportunity.

        No Guarantees for Equal Outcome.

  • cacslewisfan

    Great job. Good luck in school. It sounds like you could teach the faculty a thing or two.

  • cxt

    Good read!
    “Check your privilege”
    Another bumper sticker argument presented as “deep thinking” by the Left.

  • Robert Harkins

    I was surprised to learn that our writer was a college freshman. As I read his column, powerful and eloquent, I was impressed with the writer’s maturity. I thought he must have been of an age sufficient to have witnessed, indeed experienced something of the horrors he described. Here indeed is an old and well seasoned soul, a pure mind, a good heart and all this in a freshman.

    • Race_Dissident

      My thoughts precisely. Would that I could have thought and written so well at the age of 18. Young Fortgang is a man who truly deserves his place among the nation’s elite students, and that in itself is a bit of a rarity.

      • 1stworlder

        Obviously it is all because he is white, after all no amount of education could make a non Asian minority as eloquent

    • trapper

      Yes, the author is mature far beyond his years–indeed he has wisdom.

  • Hard Little Machine

    I am sorry you’re getting such a thorough and daily raking over the coals at salon.com. They are positively obsessed with you and have been running one or more columns every day for a week screaming at you and about you. Keep up the good work, sir.

    • nomoretraitors

      I’d consider it a badge of honor to have the left angry at me

      • Race_Dissident

        They are angry because they are threatened by the truths that Fortgang elucidates.

        • nomoretraitors

          Then let’s keep threatening

      • 1stworlder

        To be fair they are attacking a Gay guy in NYC who eats at chik fil a because he likes the food.

    • Drakken

      You know your over the target by the heavy amount of flak your getting. May many more of kids like this young man speak out.

  • Joe Esposito

    Thank you for a great story. Your family and millions of other families from all walks of life have made America the greatest country ever to exist on this earth.
    We must all stand together to defeat the Marxist that run America today.

  • Donna Sherwood

    talk about profiles in courage ! what a wonderful young man. The left creates a climate of terror on all campuses and it can be overwhelming. I laugh when people my age reminisce about the “love and peace” pervading the glory days of the 60′s and 70′s. All i remember is dirty unpleasant drugged out zombies and a sense of pervasive violence lurking underneath. It was completely disgusting

    • trapper

      I remember the brave men who fought the Soviet Empire in Vietnam, Dominican Republic, and elsewhere–and especially those who died in the fight.

    • laura r

      THATS why i didnt go to a academic liberal arts college.

  • nomoretraitors

    Stand tall, Tal, stand tall. And tell those liberal fascists to GO TO H*LL

  • Steve Fair

    Yawn. Another pimply faced brownshirt whining because he doesn’t get 100% of all the goodies.

    • Joe The Gentile

      Troll–don’t feed it.

      • 95Theses

        Scroll past the troll.

    • UCSPanther

      Are you looking for 40 acres and a mule?

      You ain’t gonna get either. No handouts!

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        Steppin’ don’t need a mule.

        He is his own jackazz.

    • 1stworlder

      Well being white does give you almost as much IQ potential as east Asians.

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      Pot. Kettle. Clearasil. Iron.

    • cxt

      Steve “Fair”
      Wasn’t that you BMW’ing about “gutteral hatred.” ;)
      Here you have a guy whom lost most of his family in the Holacaust and you call him a “brownshirt.”
      Not exactly a rational plea for moe dignified self-expression is it. ;)

    • laura r

      he doesnt want or need an obama phone. he also has self esteem which is somthing you dont have. you love being the downtrodden victim. its an egeo trip for you. bor-ing so tired.

    • Andy_Lewis

      Did you just play the race card AGAIN? Oh NO you din’t!!! (Insert Queen Shenequa neck snap here.)

  • trapper

    Great story. Of course, this changes nothing. Many black people have no impulse control and adhere to ghetto values so they will never achieve anything. Hence, for them to accuse others of “privilege” is to excuse their own failure.

    • Tamsin Terpsichore

      I suspect that’s what all of this stuff is trying to hide.

  • JVR

    Way to go man! Way to go! Tell’em off — you do not owe them a thing.

  • MrUniteUs1

    .Jewish privilege. Right wing Jews have an ugly habit, of playing the blackie whitey card, then hiding behind oppressed ancestors. I wonder how Tal feels about “Hitler’s Jewish Soliders” 400,000 according to the book. Tal has privilege of living today because millions of Black and White American served during WWII. We lost over 400,000 Americans during that war.
    http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Buchenwald/BuchenwaldPhotos/AASoldiers.jpg

    • objectivefactsmatter

      Collectivism sucks.

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      Ever wonder why people from East Asia, India, who are dark skinned, are more successful, test higher than low class “urban ghetto” trash?

      It ain’t skin color that holds people back.

      • MrUniteUs1

        They also test higher than “trailer trash” and I suspect higher than yourself. How do you feel about the African immigrants and African Americans that test higher than you?

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      This one is for you, socialist.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hv8oqdJyqhw

    • cxt

      Mr Unite
      I’m curious, if your argument is that ALL jews lose their victimhood because SOME jews helped Hilter.
      Than do ALL blacks lose their rights to claim victim because SOME blacks owned slaves?
      Or perhaps since almost all black slaves were captured and sold into slavery by other blacks does that mean that what happended to them is somehow not a problem?
      I ask because you seem to arguing some sort of “collective guilt”…a notion which I just can’t get head around.

      • MrUniteUs1

        I didn’t mention, victimhood, or guilt, you did. Now here is something I did write.”Jewish privilege. Right wing Jews have an ugly habit, of playing the blackie whitey card, then hiding behind oppressed ancestors” Do you agree or disagree and why?

        • CapitalistPig

          You didn’t have to–the implication is clear. You’re making a case for “Jewish Privilege” which by its very nature implies “(fill in the group) Oppression”–blacks, slaves, gays, whoever. You don’t get both sides of the argument.

    • TheOrdinaryMan

      So why didn’t the Allies bomb the railroad lines leading to the death camps? Because President Franklin Roosevelt didn’t want to be seen as fighting the war “to save the Jews.”(As he put it) And there’s no way there were 400,000 Jewish(!!) soldiers fighting for Hitler(!!). You must believe in green cheese and the tooth fairy. Try reading a real history book once in a while, instead of Stormfront.

    • AbsolutelyRight

      Rev Wright? Is that you?

    • Joe The Gentile

      You have it backwards. The ‘Blackie Whitey’ card means de-legitimizing Whitey/success. The Right Wing Jews I’ve seen tend to de-legitimize the race card itself, not whitey. And that is what the writer of the article here is doing.

      The left always aims to de-legitimize success, and earned privilege. The right does not.

  • DennisMets

    This might be an unpopular comment but something people
    should observe. I have been to many countries and one thing I can tell you
    is the United States is one of the most murderous of them all. We have
    been sold on diversity but if you look around the world you see it
    does not work. Israel will forever be a blood bath with Muslims (Arabs) killing Jews.
    And despite what our president says he has made it clear he will stand
    with his Muslims and racist reverends to the end. The president’s reverends and
    heroes have made it clear they hate the devil whites and they will continue to
    program future generations of black youths to carry on the hate for the devil
    whites. If you take what black leaders, reverends and the panthers are saying
    about whites and put the words in a whites mouth about blacks there would be a nationwide
    freak show on about it. Now think about this hate and what they are doing to
    carry out the war on whites? Not only are they pushing to get as many Hispanics
    into the country to get them under the
    minority umbrella and to program them to hate whites they are bringing in
    thousands of Somalian Muslims and others and they are placing them in mostly
    small white communities. This is akin to promoting war because you have
    diverse cultures like black Muslims moving in on peaceful white communities and
    they are also programed to hate whites and think they are entitled. Make no
    mistake the overall plan is to push out whites and by bringing in Muslims
    that over breed everywhere they are you can see in a few generations
    how they will overwhelm the whites that are regulating their families to a
    smaller size in order to send them to good schools and live in safe
    neighborhoods. In other words whites are paying for getting these people
    here to murder and push them out. Anyone can
    see what crimes these Muslims have brought to us as
    refugees and what our congress has become, ESP. since the
    president has only appointed people that share his views of hate and
    entitlement like Sotomayor to make sure
    minorities have every advantage in the world handed to them. How could anyone
    think that refugees or illegals from another country should get
    preferential treatment over whites that have lived and
    worked for a living)? Black people have a tremendously
    powerful voice and when it speaks people shake and do crazy things, like
    the sponsors that pulled adds with the clippers. If whites had that much
    of a voice we could get a lot of racism stopped against us to. If you do not
    think there is a war on Christian Whites your naive and stupid, why else would
    you bring in thousands of Muslim refugees that make no secret their hate
    for Christians and put them in mostly small white Christian communities?
    Normally predators are outnumbered and breed by what they prey on
    otherwise they would run out of food. But in this case the Hispanics and the
    Muslim refugees are overwhelming the White Christians they prey on and that is
    by design. I guess whites will stand by and get exterminated
    while the white leaders in politics sell them out for a dollar.

    • Drakken

      The problem inherent in the lefts theory, is that you can push the European/American only so far before the dormant DNA in all of us, comes out with a extremely brutal, bloody minded, backlash of biblical proportions. One way or another, this does not end well for those on the left. They just don’t know it yet.

    • MrUniteUs1

      Psst you’re projecting.

  • Judgmentday

    I first read this piece a couple of days ago, along with some pernicious comments made by what one can only describe as anti-Semitic Jews who actually claimed this brilliant young man had no moral right to pen this excellent column because he had not experienced the Holocaust first-hand. Sometimes I wish I wasn’t Jewish simply because some of us are even more ignorant than Islamic jihadists.

  • Robert Johnson

    Get David Horowitz’s booklet, “Black Skin Privilege”.

    • MrUniteUs1

      Never heard of the book, but the title confirms the point I’ve made about right wing Jews pitting Black and White against each other.

      • CapitalistPig

        You judge books by their cover?

        • MrUniteUs1

          Depends on the book and the title.

          • CapitalistPig

            Then there’s no “depends” about it….. You do.
            That’s like saying “I only drink when I’m alone or with someone–but I won’t admit to drinking all the time.”

  • chuck_2012

    I think its just more garbage propaganda from a group of people who are mad that others have money and means and they don’t. The world is full of the jealous and envious…just another ploy to annoy white males.

  • Dyer’s Eve

    Come and check my privilege, all lefties out there. I hope you know a good dentist.

    • chuck_2012

      well said!

  • wallyj180

    I checked my privilege. I found it.

    Maybe it was;
    growing up on the wrong side of the tracks,
    being one of 7 children,
    wearing hand-me-downs to school,
    knowing skim milk powder.

    But no, my privilege comes from being raised by parents that knew the difference between right and wrong.
    Parents that knew that there was no such thing as a free lunch.
    They passed those values on to all 7 of us.

    That is my privilege, and I’ll be thanking mom for it tomorrow.

    • CapitalistPig

      And having parentS…………….as in “plural”.

  • guest

    “Check your privilege” is the Cult of Progressivism’s version of “Original Sin.”

    • Tamsin Terpsichore

      And with no redemption, ever, ever, ever!

  • Enzo

    All I know is that my family didn’t arrive in the U.S. until 1906 WELL AFTER the civil war and Indian land looting but I have been BLAMED my entire life for it because of the color of my skin and TRUTH IS my own family was running from the persecution of the Irish in Great Britain when they arrived here. Get’s REAL OLD after awhile hearing all the WHINING and BLAMING.

  • Enzo

    Also, the whites are the MINORITY of the world’s population we have BILLIONS more Indians, Hispanics, Asians and Blacks hanging around then their will EVER be whites so why is everything on earth OUR problem??

  • Dudekabob

    Where in the phrase “check your privilege” is anyone being asked to apologize for anything? Put another way, the phrase is a much more hep (or hip, if you prefer) way of saying, “There but for the grace of God go I.” It’s more about recognizing your fortunate “roll of the dice” while acknowledging another who’s perhaps been dealt a bum hand. There’s nothing to apologize for and no apology is asked. There are, however, plenty of reasons to be thankful, obviously. And a whole lot of ways to show the world gratitude for your “privilege.”

    • MrUniteUs1

      Agreed.

    • Joe The Gentile

      No. It’s about de-legitimizing any advantages you have, as if they are unearned by you and your parents. And that is intended to provoke a response akin to guilt.

      Put it this way, in the times when ‘Check your privelege’ is asked, you respond with ‘I’ve checked it and determined that it is well-earned by me and my parents’, what would he response be then? Glad acceptance, encouragement and a clap?

  • MrUniteUs1

    So what do you think about the white guy’s privilege of being football star Michael Sam’s boyfriend.

    • Andy_Lewis

      Check yer envy.

      • MrUniteUs1

        lol

  • rktman

    So if this “privilege” thing is real, wouldn’t that mean that there are no homeless white folks? Now I’m confused.

    • MrUniteUs1

      Don’t be confused. It’s and old game. Called dividing the Gentiles.

      • Joe The Gentile

        You’re trying to divide the Jews and the Gentiles at Frontpagemag. But it isn’t going to work.

  • MrUniteUs1

    Jewish employee plays the race card.

    Did some digging and found this.http://www.newsweek.com/why-did-timecom-republish-princeton-freshmans-screed-about-white-privilege-250100

    “Do homepage editors at national news outlet routinely surf conservative campus publications for freshman-level op-eds to syndicate? Or did Fortgang submit it himself?

    He didn’t, he says.

    “They reached out to me personally and asked if they could republish the piece,” Fortgang explained via email. TIME.com then replaced Fortgang’s title, Checking My Privilege: Character as the Basis of Privilege, with the decidedly clickier Why I’ll Never Apologize for my White Male Privilege. “They didn’t tell me they’d change the title of the piece, which I think drastically changed the mentality people had about how they were going to approach reading it before they even started,” Fortgang added.

    The TIME employee who reached out was Ryan Sager, Fortgang said.”

    Sager formerly worked for a Rupert Murdoch publication.

    So what do you think about Sager playing the race card by changing the title,

    and then not even telling Fortang?

    Why do so many right wing Jewish writers play the race card?

    The problem is once someone is programmed to hate one group it’s easy to get them to hate another group.

  • MrUniteUs1

    Why the racist remarks after Black Hockey player scores the winning goal?

    http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2014/05/02/boston-strong-racist-reaction-after-subban-scores-game-winner/

    • Drakken

      Playing hockey against the blacks was extremely fun, no impulse control and you could bait them into a penalty very easily.

      • MrUniteUs1

        Why the racist remarks after Black Hockey player scores the winning goal?

        • Drakken

          Sorry but throwing out the race card isn’t going to work anymore, us European/Americans have nothing to apologize for, and we will no longer grovel at the alter of PC/MC and diversity at any price. You don’t hear me celebrating a white guy that makes a basket in basketball now do you? As for the black hockey player? It is the exception, not the rule.

  • antioli

    It is true Whites even have a White Privilege credit card that they can swipe at the White Privilege Bank.
    Just swipe an there you are wealthy and happy. That is why no White people are poor. The all have great jobs. All they have to do swipe and immediately they are CEO s . Some even become great powers in the Democratic party. They own and work for net works. They get great positions as professors where their only job is to rant against the White Privilege Credit Card.
    Ah to be White.

  • fingerroll

    White. Proud. Me.

  • ted

    Grab your sack, then say my privilege is o.k. Ask if they want you to check anything else.

  • Danny

    When I went to teachers college, we had to write an essay about how our Whiteness has benefited us, and how anything we’ve accomplished in our own lives were not really accomplishments at all, but rather the natural result of our benefitting from our skin colour in a racist society. Even worse, we were forced to consider ways, once we got in front of a classroom, to impart that message to our students. We are supposed to let our White students know that any of their accomplishments was the result of society being stacked in their favour. Conversely, we are supposed to let the visible minorities in our classes know that any of their failures of lack of accomplishments were the result of an inherently racist society, that is meant to keep them down. Of these two messages, I believe the later was the worse one, though both are awful. To train our young people into believing that they are nothing more than victims and so there is no point in making an effort to succeed, is about as evil an act as any teacher can do. Worst of all, I saw those young people in my teachers college class buying into this atrocious way of thinking. They and a large portion of every graduating teachers college student body for the last 15 years, are now out there in front of students spreading that disgusting message. How’s THAT for a nightmare?

    • MrUniteUs1

      Sounds make believe. Maybe you had a nightmare

    • Tamsin Terpsichore

      How sickening. I’m a recently retired teacher and luckily never confronted that, probably because I’m in Canada. When Social Justice Math started being pushed, along with Discovery Math and I could see it was hurting the disadvantaged students I had (in that particular case, black students) the MOST, I knew I couldn’t take much more.

  • MrUniteUs1

    How do you know if you’re white or not? Your skin is not white. Pink, beige,or tan, or gray, but not white. I you’re skin were actually white, you would be locked in a lab somewhere. Some people think,only true white are have blonde hair and blue eyes. They don’t have white skin either.

    Is this man white?

    http://s1.ibtimes.com/sites/www.ibtimes.com/files/styles/v2_article_large/public/2013/09/11/sir-maejor.jpg

    • Drakken

      Albino of the black variety, in Africa they would butcher him and eat him.

  • Tamsin Terpsichore

    I can barely read the whole article because for someone whose family fled and survived the Nazis doesn’t have to answer for anything. It makes me so angry I want to say to anyone who’d say that to you “Check your own d*** privilege”. But thanks for the thoughtful essay, which I’m sure is very good if I could get past my anger! I’ll try and read the rest!