So, do you have “right-handed privilege?” Is it unfair? Should you be ashamed? Should we give special advantages to lefties to help make up for it? Your response to that is probably something like, “Wait, is this a real thing? It can’t be a real thing can it?”
Unfortunately, it is a real thing.
A photo of an activist giving a presentation about "right-handed privilege"—a theory that those who are right-handed have life advantages over those who are left-handed—at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), has gone viral.
...Students at the university confirmed to Newsweek that the presentation was not satire and was in fact part of a mandatory program by the university's Office of Fraternity & Sorority Life, which oversees the 51 fraternity and sorority organizations at the institution.
...The hour-long presentation at UNC Chapel Hill also spoke about intersectionality, Indigenous land acknowledgment, identity politics, as well as privilege, social constructs, and systems of oppression.
The Carolina Review reported that attendees were instructed to take notes and electronic devices were prohibited, and Greek organizations were threatened with fines if they didn't send chapter representatives to the lecture.
On the one hand, this event was mandatory. Attend or be fined. On the other hand, electronic devices were prohibited because they knew how crazy they looked. Yet, because American society in general and universities in particular, endlessly cater to whiners, crybabies, and people that claim to be victims, they went through with it anyway. Maybe the Dean was worried that refusing to give the go-ahead to this nonsense would be considered de facto evidence he was a white supremacist because there are left-handed black Americans? Who knows? With colleges today, it could be anything.
In any case, it’s worth noting that the wacko giving this presentation is just one wacko out of many “right-hand privilege” wackos.
Most people are going to laugh at the idea of “right-handed privilege” because it seems so incredibly silly. Here’s the thing though, once you understand what the woke are trying to do with the various “privilege” arguments they’ve embraced, it all becomes incredibly silly. The Left doesn’t make any good or reasonable “privilege” arguments and there are far more of them than most people realize.
Certainly, you have heard liberals talk about “white privilege.” However, there’s also “white-passing privilege” (passing for white), “male privilege” (or “gender privilege”), “male passing privilege” (being trans and passing for man), “heterosexual privilege,” “cisgender privilege,” “socioeconomic privilege,” “able-bodied privilege,” “religious privilege,” “passport privilege,” “birthplace privilege,” “location-based privilege,” “geographical privilege,” “non-immigrant privilege,” “transportation privilege,” “beauty privilege,” “age privilege” and “couple privilege,” among many others.
If you boil down “privilege,” what does it really mean in this context? It means that because of some type of classification that a person falls into, that person has advantages others don’t have and those other people are VICTIMS because of this.
There are a number of serious problems with this type of thinking.
The first is that many of the “privileges” people supposedly have are extremely insignificant or arguably, not privileges at all. Here are some examples from a Harper’s Bazaar article on “white privilege” that will show you what I mean. Here are just some of the “privileges” white people supposedly have (comments in parenthesis are mine):
1) I can, if I wish, arrange to be in the company of people of my race most of the time. (Is this actually unusual somehow? Because it seems to be pretty standard.)
5) I can turn on the television or open to the front page of the paper and see people of my race widely represented. (Is this an advantage? “Oh wow, there’s Joe Biden. There’s Rachel Maddow. There’s a white cop they’re accusing of being racist. What a privilege!)
9) I can go into a music shop and count on finding the music of my race represented, into a supermarket and find the staple foods that fit with my cultural traditions, into a hairdresser’s shop and find someone who can cut my hair. (Are there really black Americans who can't find somewhere to get their hair cut or find a place to listen to rap music or R&B?)
15) I am never asked to speak for all the people of my racial group. (I'd be thrilled to be the spokesman for all white people. If this were an official job and I could have it, I would apply.)
16) I can remain oblivious of the language and customs of persons of color who constitute the world’s majority without feeling in my culture any penalty for such oblivion. (Is the argument here that black Americans all know the language and customs in say Bhutan, Ghana, and Senegal while white people don't? Because, I'm guessing, Americans in general aren't on top of that sort of thing since it has zero impact on their day-to-day lives.)
17) I can criticize our government and talk about how much I fear its policies and behavior without being seen as a cultural outsider. (If anything, this one seems completely backward if you’re a white conservative.)
So, when we talk about privilege, we often start with a lot of very iffy, disputable, and often trivial supposed advantages one group or another has.
However, what you will also find is that the woke often ignore the “privileges” of groups they favor, even when they’re pretty obvious. Like what? Well, black Americans are much less likely than white Americans to be fired without a paperwork trail, they can often aim racial slurs at white people without consequences, and they’re the biggest beneficiaries of Affirmative Action. Who’s societally expected to pay on dates or have an advantage in divorce court, men or women? There’s a reason people talk about the “Alphabet Mafia.” It’s because, in America, we insist on treating the LBGTQ crowd much more delicately than other groups of people. We just had transsexual men that were allowed to compete against women in the Olympics. That certainly seems like “privilege.” Then, there’s “liberal privilege.” Liberal groups like ANTIFA and Black Lives Matter (wait, is that “liberal privilege,” “black privilege,” or both?) that have been allowed to riot, often with impunity, while the liberal press described their horrible behavior as “mostly peaceful.” We could even talk about “illegal alien privilege” because they’ve been allowed and even encouraged to break our laws with minimal consequences and promises of future awards.
We can go on and on with this if we like. Does Lebron James have “tall privilege” and “athletic privilege” because he’s an NBA star and a slow, stocky, 5’10” guy like me never had the slightest chance to make it in the NBA? Did Albert Einstein have “intelligence privilege” because he was so smart? Do people like Mark Zuckerberg have “privilege” because they’re obviously descended from a group of lizard people that have traveled to earth to conquer all of us?
If we really wanted to spend enough time on it, we could probably come up with a large list of advantages and disadvantages that just about every race, gender, group, and classification in America has today. No one other than God could look at every advantage and disadvantage and truly tell us who really has the upper hand based on the innumerable different factors in play.
When we human beings try to do it, we are always, always, always going to horribly screw it up not just because of our biases, but because we are not intellectually capable of weighing all the factors that go into it. We think we’re smart because we can pick out a handful of factors and do a heavily biased statistical analysis of the impact they supposedly have when there are thousands and thousands of variables that play into the success of a person or group of human beings.
This inevitably leads to one group of people being falsely told they’re “victims” based on factors that are beyond their control and another group that did nothing wrong being targeted, punished, or vilified for their supposed “privilege.” Are you a dirt-poor white kid in Appalachia? You should feel terrible about how your “privilege” is holding down people like Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama. Sorry Asian kids who’ve studied and made good grades, we need to allow other minorities with lower scores to take your slot in an elite college because there are too many Asians that are succeeding. While we’re at it, we’ll go ahead and phase out the gifted and talented programs because the supposedly “privileged” kids are earning too many spots. This is destructive. It’s unfair. It will lead to an endless cycle of hatred, recriminations, and falsely created “victims and victimizers.”
Oh yeah, so what’s the alternative supposed to be?
The reality is that we already had a functional, working alternative. Equal rights under the law. Making decisions based on merit instead of race or supposed “victimhood” status. Trying to create conditions that make it easier for everyone to succeed. Encouraging the people that are failing to copy the people that are succeeding instead of claiming it’s all unfair. That isn’t a perfect system, but it is a functional system that the United States thrived under. Can you say the same thing about trying to break everything down into privileged and unprivileged groups? It’s also worth noting that system didn’t eradicate every inequality, but only fools would expect that to happen anyway.
Whether you’re talking about “right-handed privilege,” “white privilege,” or any other kind of privilege, it never has achieved better outcomes for people and it never will because it’s fruit from a rotten tree. You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, and you can’t make a nation better or even fairer by pitting every segment of the country against each other in a heavily politicized struggle over privilege and victimhood.