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, archivist-in-training, retired foreign service officer and Navy veteran.

4 thoughts on “Resistance and privilege”

  1. Love how you make me think. Until 2017 I didn’t realize I was privileged. Blessed very blessed yes but never privileged. It’s all relative no matter who we are.
    I’m old enough to know others don’t define me.
    I’m so pleased the evil white woman is not our leader…only because I won’t allow myself to hate but I do despise her.
    I wish the first Black President wasn’t Obama. I never voted for him but I too cried in the glory of others for the healing of race relations. Too bad on that one. How come he was never half white? No one ever said it. No one ever embraced it. How sad the missed opportunity.
    But what do I know “they” say I’m just a racist privileged hillbilly bitch…


    1. Thanks for your comment, Cheryl. I tried to balance the poem out, pointing out the flaws in privilege on both sides. There have been times when I could have been accused of behaving in a privileged way. Privilege crosses all boundaries. Let me know if I fall short.


  2. I love your poem and you did well to balance the privilege for which I appreciate.

    Just expressing my humble view of the politics today in my world.

    One can’t help the cards their born with, privilege included. What’s important is how one plays the game.
    I continue to learn. Awakening.

    Liked by 1 person

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