White Privilege by Peggy Macintos
Published 12 May 2017
The essay written by Peggy Macintosh compared and interrelate the concept of racism to the issue of equality betwheen man and woman. In her essay, Macintosh mentioned that men seem to be in denial about the privileges that they enjoyed that women’s don’t. They tend to disagree with the notion that they are over privileged (in many aspects) than women, although they are aware of the disadvantage that women faced. Macintosh mentioned that this kind of mentality is also applicable with the issue of racism between the whites and people with color. More privilege is being granted to whites and they seem not to be aware of these privileges. Although the state had already provided some legislations abandoning the inequalities among races, still the fact remains that racism could not be completely eliminated. These privileges, which the whites seem not to acknowledge, are being reflected on the norms present in the society. Some of these so called unacknowledged privileges were stated on Macintosh essay. Whether on the work place, learning area or recreation places, the whites experienced these privileges while their counterparts are always in an uncomfortable situation because of the fear of being interrogated, embarrassed or harassed.
The issue on racism and equality among races is still an in demand problem that needs to be addressed. The mere presence of legislations against racism is not an answer to solve this problem. The points of Macintosh in her work are true regarding the myth of meritocracy between the whites and non whites. It is also true that some of the actions done by the whites reflect some sort of racist attitude that typically affects their counterparts. White Americans dominates most of the top position in a job and are overrepresented in magazines and in television programs. Truly, this scenario for the white individuals is of no significance at all because they are, in no doubt, one of them. This overrepresentation and oblivious act of whites in many fields is the main issue that Macintosh is dealing with. Unknowingly, the white individuals fail to recognize that they have been over empowering their own race.
Being unconscious of this race over empowerment, white individuals seems to continually do certain actions of a racist. The reason for this unawareness is brought about by the society. Schools have something to do with the sense of dominance and unawareness of white individuals and in return, they also play a big part in enlightening white Americans to shun such dominance and unawareness.
Peggy Macintosh’ White Privilege indeed presented a clear and acceptable idea regarding equalities between races. It is good to know that some of the white Americans like the author presented the problem without a touch of biased to their own race America has the dream of meritocracy, but this dream seems to be not reflective on the society’s actions. Just like issue of dominance between man and woman, the issues of racism or prejudice because of color continuously hunt America. Even until today, the whites opt to oppress the minority. I do hope that more white individuals would read and critically analyzed the ideas presented by Macintosh because her essay would let them realize that indeed, the society is still being biased regarding races. Citizens must keep their eyes and mind open to see these simple actions of racism. It is not enough that they know the definition of racism and they know the past history of such concept. What is more needed is their move to end this problem. Changing the system or policy is not the mere answer to overcome racism, individuals in the society must also take actions regarding this matter. Implementation of legislation without the collaborative support from the people would not lead to success.
- Macintosh, Peggy. “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.”