Resistance and privilege

You are angry and upset about the election
because your favorite candidate lost.
And now you want to exercise your right
to protest, even to resist the outcome.

But that act of resistance is not your right,
it’s your privilege, your white privilege
(insofar as whiteness is only a state
of mind, anyway), because normal people
accept election results. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that your privilege,
your socially constructed white privilege,
was always and forever a mythological invention,
a mirage that never truly materialized,
a false promise, and a rubber check.

And it was always madness to think
skin color alone made anyone better
(or different) than anybody else,
superior even to one’s own lineage.
The really sad news is that everybody
else around the world already knew you,
and you didn’t even know yourself.

You are not alone in your disappointment.
Misery loves company, & privilege is a
confusion that crosses many boundaries.
White privilege begets & cosigns
black privilege, its mirror image,
both species fast approaching extinction.
Hang down your head, Tom Dooley.
Poor boy you’re bound to die.


Author: Raymond Maxwell Librarian and archivist-in-training, retired foreign service officer and former naval officer.

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