I agree with Bill O’Reilly’s position that there is no such thing as ‘White privilege,’ this is the absolute truth, his reasons for that position however, is borne from a state of denial. He reasons, and I paraphrase, that because the abolishment of African enslavement and the seemingly decline of the ensuing Jim Crow era, White privilege particularly in America has been neutralized or greatly subdued. He further cites a Black man (Barack Obama) sitting as President in the White House and a Black woman (Oprah Winfrey) ranking amongst the richest in the land evidences the non-existence of White privilege.
This is where, in my opinion, Bill O’Reilly goes off the tracks, for while he truthfully states ‘there is no White privilege;’ his reasoning implies that once upon a time there was. To this I say emphatically ‘bull-rubbish,’ please be sure that he gets this memo and carbon copies Whites the world over that ‘White privilege’ never existed. What both Whites and Blacks have been conditioned to view and label as ‘White privilege’ has been but ‘White pillage.”
Let’s first get the language right as we take a brief but loud walk thru ‘his-story’ for truly history is best suited to judge. According to the dictionary a ‘privilege’ is a granted right or advantage to an individual or group. The key word in that definition is granted, for while a person or group may have an advantage or assume rights over another this right or advantage only rises to the level of a privilege when it is granted. One must earn a privilege; one cannot merely take a privilege, or give themselves a privilege. We arrive at this conclusion by examining the definition of ‘grant’ which means to ‘bestow or confer especially by a formal or legal act.’ This implies that the person or group incurring the privilege cannot bestow it upon themselves; it would require another party apart from themselves with the power and authority over the privilege to legally and formally or explicitly grant them that privilege.
When an individual comes of age, they cannot simply grant themselves the privilege of driving, after earning the privilege of driving by passing the required exams and tests that privilege is granted to them by those who have the authority to do so. Other drivers and users of the roads and freeways rely on that authoritative body to grant the privilege of driving only to those who have earned it, other drivers as such feel a sense of relative safety presuming that the other drivers met the necessary requirements to have earned the privilege to drive. Those who take the benefit of driving without having been granted the privilege operate outside of the stated laws and are subject to legal reprisals.
In morally advanced societies, a man who grants himself the right to sleep with a woman without her having granted him that privilege is a rapist. He is not the authority over her body so he lacks the requisite position to grant himself the privilege. In less morally advanced societies a man was granted the privilege by the law of land over the body and will of the woman or women he married, but even in those instances he would still have to had earned (marry) and granted the privilege by an authority other than himself. It is within this context that I state there is not, nor have there ever been White privilege in regards to the racial relationship between Blacks and Whites, there has been only White pillage, white rape.
When the European nations assembled themselves as the Berlin Conference in 1884-1885 and bestowed upon themselves the right to carve up Africa amongst themselves as their personal colonies, this was not a privilege that was granted to them, they did not have the requisite authority to do so and as such, their actions amounted to no more than rape and pillage, far from the privileged status they claimed. Inherent within a privilege is the fact that it can be taken away, should certain required conditions not be maintained, should there be a breach on the part of the recipients of the privilege, the authority that granted the privilege can take it away. Clearly the activity of the Europeans at the Berlin Conference does not rise to the level of a privilege, but sinks to the depths of rape and pillage.
Whites benefited and are benefiting from White pillage, but benefits are not privileges. The bank robber benefits from his crime as long as he gets away with it, he is not privileged, he is a taker, a raper, a pillager. The mafias and cartels who pay off the authorities sworn to oppose them are not enjoying a privilege, they, like Whites, are benefiting from there illicit trade as long as they can get away with it, through the use of violence and payoffs they effectively keep the hounds of justice at bay for as long as they can. That benefit is then passed on to their offspring and subsequent generations who from a position of abject ignorance of their past operate under the sanitized illusion of ‘privilege’ when in fact they are benefactors of rape and pillage.
Whites have afforded themselves an advantage over the African by means of the gun and violent thuggery. They inserted their presence, culture, and language into the fabric of Africa to Africa’s detriment. The relationship is and always has been parasitic, for while Whites gained, Blacks lost. According to Paul Bairoch in Economics and World History: Myths and Paradoxes, when Europe descended upon Africa in the 1700s, they encountered a civilized and thriving continent. Africa was responsible for about 73 percent of manufactured goods sold globally, Europe only 27 percent. Not only was Africa the bread basket to the world, she refined and manufactured her own raw resources, Europe would import many of its products from Africa, but they came, they saw, and they conquered a people not accustomed to their level of violence and willful destruction of life. Due entirely to White pillage and rape, Europe by the 19th century. would refine and manufacture some 89 percent of the raw resources it pillaged from Africa, selling the refined goods back to Africa with a huge markup, this contributed decidedly to the benefits and advantages Whites enjoy today. Africa was reduced to manufacturing a measly 11 percent of its own natural resources. King Leopold the 2nd of Belgium would slaughter more than 10 million Congolese as he pillaged the raw resources such as rubber that made Belgium, all of Europe and the United States flush, the benefits and advantages still resonate with Whites today. This is not a privilege granted to Whites; history judges them to be but the recipients of the spoils of rape and pillage.
The relationship between the kidnapper and his victim is not one of privilege to the kidnapper, the relationship formed between the enslaved African and the European is not a privilege bestowed on the European, it is a relationship borne of violence, rape, and pillage, it is a relationship in which only Whites have benefited and are still benefiting today.
During the 18th century, France kidnapped the African from his home and enslaved him on the island of Haiti. France grew rich as the Africans were worked to death, there was no privilege to France here, just rape and pillage. In 1804, the Haitian would successfully defeat France and throw off the shackles of chattel enslavement, however, France could not bear to lose the benefits and advantages it gained from the blood of the African on Haiti, so with the complicity of Europe and the United States France, would extort $150 million Francs from Haiti at the barrel of the gun, this was paid as reparations to the White enslavers for loss of their unlawful income, it would also further cripple Haiti and ensure that she would not rise out of abject poverty. This was not White privilege, this was rape and White pillage.
Whites continued to benefit from the inequitable relationship they foisted on the backs of the African. They gave themselves the advantage by deliberately retarding the growth and development of Africa, they structured the rules to not only favor themselves but disfavor the African, they fixed the game ensuring benefits and advantages for generations to come. It was not a privilege for Whites to sit at the front of the bus; it was not a privilege for them to have the choicest real estate in South Africa while forcefully relegating the indigenous Blacks to ghettos and shanty towns; it was not a privilege for them to have the best water-fountains, the best schools and restaurants. No authority apart from themselves granted them those privileges; they took those advantages by forcefully denying Blacks their basic human rights. It is they who imposed the racial divide, then sabotaged the race by cutting the Achilles heel of the African. This would ensure that Whites gained a favorable advantage over the African for generations to come, this is not White privilege, just White pillage.
All the benefits and advantages that Whites enjoy today were gained by taking, including America. Whites are responsible for more deaths and suffering on this planet with their World Wars, their crusades, enslavements, colonization, and genocides than all of the viruses, storms, earthquakes, floods and other natural occurrences combined.
It is true that England assisted in the abolishment of the African enslavement, but they did not do this out of some benevolence or stricken conscience. They did so to retard the wealth that France was amassing from this crime against humanity, they saw a brighter future in the colonization of Africa and the African Diaspora. England would ensure that Whites benefited for generations to come by compensating them with billions in reparations for the loss of income from the unlawful and criminal enslavement of the African. The African would receive not one dime at a time when they needed it the most. This is not White privilege, but White pillage.
White pillage would then be sanitized and re-scripted by Hollywood under the guise of entertainment, they would convert themselves from savages, murderers, rapists, and pillagers, to heroes, heroines, and superheroes, Gods and Kings. Through Hollywood, they would be kind and benevolent to the savages of Africa as Tarzan tamed the black apes, and the big black King Kong was brought to his knees. All facets of White society would be engaged in furthering and maintaining the benefits and advantages afforded them by White pillage. All systems of people activity including but not limited to education, banking, entertainment, employment, and the judicial system participated unchecked.
The runaway slave catchers of yesteryear, who are the police overseers of today are hired and trained to protect and serve the inequitable relationship between Blacks and Whites. Why this relationship exists to begin with is a topic of another conversation, unbeknownst to many Whites, they are as much pawns as Blacks, so who then are the ultimate benefactors of this racial disparity?
Many Whites remain blind to the truth of their blood-soaked inherited advantage. Most, like Bill O’Reilly, are in denial, yet some have not swallowed the pill of lies and stood then with Mama Harriet Tubman and the underground railroad, as some stand today and speak out against the injustices of Ferguson and other denials of justice to Blacks. Others yet are just beginning the painful journey of opening their eyes as they hashtag ‘crimingwhilewhite,’ they are slowly beginning to see and admit the institutionalized racial inequity. As one syndicated columnist, Nicholas Kristof, recently wrote that ‘young Black men are 21 times more likely to be shot and killed by police than young white men.’
This is not due to White privilege. Now that we know what constitutes a privilege, we now know it for what it truly is and has always been, White pillage. According to research conducted by the Malcolm X Grass Roots Movement, every 28-36 hours a Black person is killed by police or extrajudicial persons. So to Mike Brown, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Troy Davis, Renisha McBride, Amadou Diallo, Tamir Rice, and countless others we say ‘Rest in Uhuru’ Rest in Peace, and know that we know that you were not murdered and denied justice because Whites have privilege over you, you were murdered and denied justice to preserve and protect the Hollywood induced illusion of White privilege, which as history has suitably judged, is but White pillage.’
‘The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people, but the silence over that by the good people”– Martin Luther King, Jr.
‘The only thing that White people have that Black people need, or should want, is power…” James A, Baldwin
–Rudwaan is the author of Endangered Speeches and This 2 is Love and architect of ‘The Lions Tale’