I’m going to try and keep this to the point because I don’t want this turning into some huge thing where I just get attacked for voicing my opinion. In truth this isn’t even opinion, this is fact.
When engaged in a discussion about racism, sexism, homophobia or any other type of prejudice it’s really important to have an understanding of privilege and who has it. I’ve noticed that anybody who shares something with a majority group seems to get offended whenever someone of the oppressed group calls said majority group on privilege (and I say group NOT individual). For example if I were to make a comment on social media about the oppression of women, I can guarantee that at least one man will somehow feel insulted and offended and feel the need to comment and jump to men’s defence. This happens in basically every discussion I’ve ever had on the topic. The same goes for racism, we just cannot speak about it without white people getting offended and feeling a need to jump to white defence – I say this as a white passing mixed person.
Dear white/straight/male/able bodied/cis people, you do not need defending – you already have the power. By trying to tell someone who belongs to an oppressed group or speaking from an oppressed group’s point of view that “no, not all ___ are like that – I’m this and I’m that” you’re basically telling them that their point is invalid and in turn that their feelings and experiences to the counter argument are invalid because you’re a “good guy”. Sometimes being a good guy means shutting up and letting someone else express their feelings without you feeling the need to take the spotlight off them and shine it back onto yourself as a gleaming example of why ___s are brilliant and shouldn’t be shamed. As a white/straight/male/able bodied/cis person you already have more privilege and power than your counter, so stop asking for more power by attempting to shut your counterparts up.
It just begs the question: why are people so deeply offended by the pain of others with regard to a powerful majority? As if it isn’t enough that certain groups have power over others and oppress them, now you just want them to shut up, stop drawing attention to it and brush it back under the carpet where it belongs. It’s almost as though – as “good guy” equal opportunities supporting millennials – you’re uncomfortable with the notion of someone else being on the precipice of having a tiny amount of your power for a change…
If you’re offended by this post then I think before commenting and having a go at me, you should ask yourself why it offends you when someone that feels oppressed by people that share your privilege express themselves. (Just to reiterate: NOT YOU PERSONALLY, but the group of which you are automatically a part of due to factors beyond your control)
PS: I am a white passing, able bodied, cis person.