Rebecca Robrahn, Holland, MI. No matter how much I try to learn and read and participate in conversations, I’m told I can’t understand, will never understand, that my privilege blinds me. I know I can never truly feel the experience of living in America as a black, Asian or Latina woman, but I *AM* trying. […]
Michael Doran, Selinsgrove, PA. I am a student of music, and I love with the genre of soul/blues music like The Temptations or John Legend. Once, at an audition for the Voice, I was approached by a group of black guys who told me the six words above. It amazes how these barriers of white […]
Anonymous, Knoxville, TN. I’m from the Mountain South, where white privilege and racism take on a range of meanings outside the mainstream. I’ve heard our regional identity described as a kind of “otherized whiteness,” and I think that’s about right. Whatever else we were, we always knew our whiteness was the wrong kind. That’s what […]
Allison Foster, Louisville, KY.
Michael Swogger, Middletown, PA.
Taylor Johnson, Glen Mills, PA. I see privilege as an opportunity to make change and I would like to see it break out of the notion that it is for a restricted group. I’d like to see privilege as the zero line for everyone regardless or race, gender ethnicity… Now, I have no idea how […]
Kyle Alexander, Rochester, NY. Coming from a position a white privilege and having a large peer network of other white individuals. I hear a lot of quite muttering of “post-racial” society, and “I don’t even think about race, we’re all the same”. No. We’re not all the same and the only reason you are supporting […]
Courtnay S., Arlington, VA. Why are we so uncomfortable talking about racial privilege? Does anyone shy away from saying they are privileged because of their income, sex, language, or education? Western privilege exists. English-speaking privilege exists. On that same token, white privilege exists. It is okay to have money, to be male, to be American, […]
Anonymous, CA. Why isn’t there scholarships for white people? Why is there scholarships based on race anyways? Why isn’t there white history month? Why aren’t white people referred to as “white” but black people are generally referred to as “African American?” Why do they get often times get offended by being called “black” but white […]
Greg S. Furman, Vancouver, WA. They will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. Except white males. Your privilege predetermined your only value.
JMM, Nashville, TN. I’m white. 100% pale as can be white. I grew up as one of a small handful of white children in my elementary and middle school, and was relentlessly teased. White girl. Cracker. White b****. All names I was called. I had gum put in my hair. I was beaten up. I […]
Ellie Myers, Saint Louis, MO. I was born and raised in Saint Louis, Missouri where the tension around race politics is palpable. Race never played a big role in my life, because it never had to. That is, until I started dating black men. I remember friends in high school joking about me going to, […]
Annie Berman, Northhampton, MA. Smith College This is what it means to be a good ally. It is not POC’s job to be the only ones constantly asserting that their lives matter. Silence can be a powerful tool of resistance and empowerment, but not when white people who think race does not concern them choose […]
Morgan Lavandowska Minneapolis, MN As a 21 year old white woman, I have the privilege of being white that gives me power to do what others can’t. Instead of abusing that power, I prefer to try to help bring positive change to the world and, hopefully, help bring equality for all.
Michelle Finley, Lambertville, MI.
Queenie, Virginia Beach, VA. I am an African American mother of a 23 year old son. We have seen lots of race issues on the news, on television shows, and on social media in the last year. The response that I see many white people say is that they are tired of hearing about these […]
Barry Irving, Syracuse, NY. …History tells us that Whiteness has always been a social construct that is used to exclude certain groups… ( people of Color ) …The notion of White culture is a Myth… …White People are not a single ethnic Group or a distinct number of ethnicities. They are an amalgamation of everyone […]
Lola Rain, Roseville, CA. Growing up a white kid in a Hispanic neighbor changes ones perspective on what it means to be priviledged and entitled, neither of which I was as an only child but somehow grew into as an adult — most likely because I’m always trying to prove myself. But as I age, […]
Anonymous, Portland, OR. I use the Race Card project framework to update my racial autobiography occasionally, so it changes over time. Right now, I am struck by the urgency to unpack my White privilege and not waste time or energy on guilt. I didn’t make systemic racism but I know it exists to engineer some […]
Nathan Henderson-James, Oakland, CA. 6 words is obviously limiting. However, my 6 reflect my own experience growing up as one of the few white kids in my local public schools. It was an education being constantly in the minority (in school, outside of those walls, I was comfortably back in a white affluent world) and […]
Ursula, Oklahoma City, OK. I did not get white privilege until we adopted. I am so sorry. This story terrifies me.
Stephanie, Baltimore, MD.
Mark Whitesel, Statesboro, GA. I’m becoming more and more aware of my privilege as I grow older and how much I have taken for granted.
Emery Boyle-Scott, Milwaukee, WI. I want to belong in a group, and it’s nice to belong until someone looks closely. My whiteness is always sidelined when people learn about my lesbian moms. Don’t look closely and I have all the privilege. But, then it disappears and I’m not allowed, I’m questioned on everything. There’s no […]
Danielle Kray, Buffalo Grove, IL.
S. Aleana, Ocala, FL. I did not come from a privileged white family. My family line on all sides traces back to the early 1900’s. They were poor Irish immigrants. I have been told I do not understand how minorities feel because I am white and privileged. I have never been handed anything in life, […]
Barry Irving, Syracuse, NY. …white people are bred from the notion color superiority and first privilege. They don’t see others as equal and that is a distortion that is age old. So when addressing race, the new descendants of old Racism think that they have no blame whatsoever. Even though Their social attitudes are in […]
Eric Moore, Anchorage, AK. “I get it” cuts three ways. First, I understand this is true. Second, I am in most ways the example of a person who is privileged and this has brought me opportunities, second chances and more. But Third can be an exasperated “I get it” because no matter the advantages I’ve […]
Kit Carlson, East Lansing, MI.
Ashley Cooper Hair, Washington,DC. Georgetown Day School In the town where I went to high school, the privilege I felt was one of class. There were almost no people of color. Living in Washington, DC, I feel my white privilege constantly. Not only am I not followed around Best Buy, my shopping bags are never […]
Annie Greenberger, New York, NY. Georgetown Day School I realize that I have the choice whether to engage in this project, I have the choice not make a statement, I can decide if it is important to me and the is my white privilege.
Rosa Friedman, Philadelphia, PA. My grandparents came to this country as children of Jewish families from eastern Europe. In order to become accepted as part of the racial elite and gain access to white privilege, they had to leave behind the things that distinguished them, their culture, language, and values. Now there is a hole […]
Ilana Gorelik, Brooklyn, NY. I’m looking to the cookie, myself.
Francis Skony, Chicago, IL. Being an almost 40 year old man from Chicago, I’ve always grown up with a melting pot of friends, acquaintances, co-workers. I do not judge anyone by their race – I will have an opinion based on how some present themselves to the world. If you have no respect and no […]
Micaela Laurelville, OH My privilege is always at the forefront of my mind. I cry in history class and while reading certain historical books. How does one make up for the past crimes of people that I can’t help but perceive as my ancestors?
Miles SC Out privilege is a curse when it comes to wanting to help voice the problems with race.
Joshua San Antonio, TX We are all one race and have only minor different biological features. Do you really believe that is the driving force behind our discrimination and stereotypical caricaturizations of each other? If we were all perfectly homogenized and mixed race, would will still discrimination against each other based on class, money, or […]
Anonymous Mobile, AL I was born and raised Caucasian, though of course, like most Caucasians, I was referred to and referred to myself as “white.” But like so many, I found myself attracted to African American culture, and, generally, more accepted by African Americans. As I’ve grown, becoming an instructor of English and therefore, an […]
Amanda Feinman Poughkeepsie, NY Race is a social category, which is given meaning by institutional and cultural systems of advantage of disadvantage. Race is significant in light of these conferred and withheld advantages: it continues to dictate the distribution of resources; it impacts access to education, healthcare, employment, and other areas of the public sphere; […]
Em New York, NY Born in Mexico, to mexican parents, crossed the border to find a better life, learning english on tv, grew up in Queens, the most ethnically diverse county in the US, with Colombians, Dominicans, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, Ecuadorians, two brothers many shades darker than I, my mother “the help,” always having too […]
Jennifer DiBrienza Palo Alto, CA Growing up as a white woman, I never had to think very much about race. As an adult I have tried to better understand the experiences of others and I was shocked by how drastically different experiences of other Americans were. I have the luxury of not having to think […]
Anonymous Frederick, MD Another woman just stopped on the street and screamed at me because I’m white and that must make me privileged. She has no idea that my both my parents are currently unemployed, I’m putting myself through school, and I get threatened for being white on a daily basis.
Tempe Ray Memphis, TN I have the privilege of attending a private school. Many people assume that just because I go to a private school it must mean that I have a lot of money. Yes, my family has enough to pay for private school tuition, but that means we don’t have extra money to […]
Giselle Sanchez Huerta Poughkeepsie, NY Race is a concept that continues privilege, structural power, and inequitable distribution of resources based on phenotypes/ sets of observable characteristics. Race is a social construct, meaning that it was created through social interactions. Society and its people built the concept and continue to give it meaning. That is not […]
Anonymous, Baltimore, MD I am a middle class American female, who, through feminism, was able to come to terms with my real place in this society. Through my ongoing search to define what being a woman means to me, and being an active participant in the debate community, I have come across many pieces of […]
Kayla McCormack Hanson, MA
Jacey Bowers, Houston, TX.
Christine Magee Brooklyn, NC
Greg Camp Fayetteville, AR I did not live in the era of legal slavery or Jim Crow. I did not support those laws. And don’t waste my time with talk about privilege. Claiming that white males have privilege simply by virtue of being white males denies the diversity in outcomes that we experience.
Anonymous Chicago, IL I am female and white. Often I am told by my POC friends that my life is easier than theirs and I am privileged because I am white. We discuss race and culture because we are comfortable and open with one another. I hear their points of view on a predominately white […]
Heather Barr, Burien, WA.
SLTR Seattle, WA I was raised in a white protestant homogenous family. From the time I was young, my curiosity led me to friends of other colors, races, personalities…anything new. In my 40’s I find myself with a Mexican husband, in a profession where I constantly learn and teach in a petri dish of races, […]
Abby Weiner Providence , RI Is it possible to keep my white privilege from harm to others? Is there any way to atone for my privilege?
Xacu Seattle, WA The country we came from views us as bad and wrong. We were conquered, killed, and hated. Laws were made against us, we were disallowed to speak our own language, forced to speak theirs. When I say hunted, I mean there were death squads sent out by the government that took 21,000+ […]
Branden Bean Drake Seattle, WA None of us decided to be born white, just as none of us created the social and political systems that discriminate against people based on race. You didn’t choose for things to be this way, but they are. Acknowledging that these pre-existing systems benefit you doesn’t make you a bad […]
Ashley S. Elkton, MD People say I’m privileged, that I’m treated better because I’m white, and a woman, and a Christian, that I had educational and professional opportunities that would’ve been closed to others. Does it make me a bad person because I grab at every chance and don’t let go, because I know that […]
Lillie Schrock Des Moines, IA
Alec Hamilton Des Moines, IA
Mary Clark Baltimore, MD People who feel that the current state of race relations are not that damaging/not that big of a deal/brought on by deserving behavior of minorities need to make conscious efforts to become aware of what perpetuates racism and race division in our society and the very large part that privilege plays […]
Matthew Gies Portland, OR (I’m white)
Laurie Sylla Spokane, WA Spokane Falls Community College
Anonymous Chadbourne Residential College
Chris Mason, OH If you are one of these as I am….recognize that you rule the world. We are afforded unmatched access and privilege. And with that comes a responsibility to work to open doors for EVERYONE else.
Jim Beaverton, OR As a white man, I am constantly swimming in a sea of racial ignorance. I have the privilege of never having to think of myself as a racial being in this society. I can spend hours, days, weeks, and even months never having to think of myself as a white man. I […]
Andrew V. Chavanak Falls City, NE When companies choose to make diversity a priority in hiring, or universities seek to create a more diverse student body and white people miss out, it’s not racism. Racism is about power, and no one can claim that power is shared equally in this country. Hearing other white people […]
Bjorn Leslie Harlson Seattle, WA For the longest time I was not fully aware of my own privilege. I would be one of those crying “reverse racism” at things like affirmative action, or any other sort of law that identifies people by their race in anyway. After taking some classes in the matter and talking […]
Cynthia Fine, Spokane, WA. Living in a part of the country that is predominately white I’ll confess to racial ignorance or naivety, but does that make me racist? As a divorced woman with children who qualified for free hot lunch my life hasn’t felt like one of privilege.
Charles Perkins Reidsville, NC White, Black, Yellow, Red, – Yes we are all people of color, however our society and institutions have deemed that some colors are more privileged than others.
Richard A. Stevens, Jr. Herndon, VA My privilege as a White male requires that I acknowledge this fact and work to reduce oppression within my sphere of influence.
Justine Knudson Boise, ID I don’t come from a family of great social status, but as a white, native English speaker in the United States, I was born with a certain degree of power. My privilege comes from my race and native language. People in power must take action in order for social change to […]
Eric D. Riner, VA Both of my parents were born in Haiti and legally immigrated to the United States where I was born. I feel blessed and privilege to call myself Haitian American. I have a rich experience because I grew up as a part of two cultures. My niece and nephew are of Haitian, […]
Erika Malinoski Oakland, CA When I was in college, I ran psychology experiments on volunteer college students, and I was always perfectly comfortable running the experiment late at night alone in the building except for the participant. Until I went to do the exact same thing I’d done a hundred times with a Black participant. […]
Todd Maxwell Omaha, NE Look, I get the whole white privilege thing. I read “Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” and I understand it. What I don’t get is how any of that stuff supposedly helps me, gives me a boost, other than in some vague self-esteem sorta way. (That’s putting aside several items that have just […]
Deanna Y. Cho Ann Arbor, MI
Megan Satterfield Ann Arbor, MI
Blake Mackie Ann Arbor, MI Understanding Race Project- University of Michigan
Jane Alexander Indianapolis, IN I spent two years of my childhood (ages 8-10) in Nairobi, Kenya, where my father was teaching. It was the most formative time in my childhood, and what I saw/learned there informed my adult ideas and character tremendously.
Submitted via Twitter: @O_Mezota
Jasmine Miller Cambridge, MA Harvard University
Laura Rogers Seattle, WA I know I have privilege in our country, as an upper-middle-class white woman. I don’t need to be told this again and again. Please don’t hold it against me. I’m an ally, if you would just get to know me.
Keith Van Norman Eugene, OR
Dina Stonberg Philadelphia, PA I have had the privilege to not have to think about race most of my life. Fell in love with a wonderful, kind, caring African American man – formed our family through adoption and now have the privilege of raising a beautiful, smart African American daughter. She is a joy every […]
Helen Hansen Submitted via: NPR’s Talk of the Nation
Dana Reynolds Lees Summit, MO I think growing up white in mostly white towns and schools fosters misunderstanding and naïveté regarding what it’s like to walk around in darker skin.
Anonymous Marietta, GA Read more about the racial divide in Marietta, GA