The term White Privilege is immediately lambasted by individuals who take offense to what it suggests.
One of the advantages of white privilege is the ability to be so immersed in misconceptions and outright lies as to ones place atop the world stage that questioning anything that holds this fabricated matrix together is inconceivable.
An example of this phenomenon are recent comments made by Congressman Steve King (R) of Iowa during a roundtable discussion on MSNBC moderated by Chris Hayes regarding the racial makeup of the Republican Party.
‘‘I’d ask you to go back through history and figure out, where are these contributions that have been made by these other categories of people that you’re talking about," said King. "Where did any other subgroup of people contribute more to civilization?"
’‘‘Than white people?’’ Hayes asked.
‘‘Than, than Western civilization itself,’’ King replied. ‘‘It’s rooted in Western Europe, Eastern Europe and the United States of America and every place where the footprint of Christianity settled the world. That’s all of Western civilization.’’
Such a comment not only appears lifted verbatim from a neo-Nazi prison gang manual, but is indicative of white privilege because, though his viewpoint is clearly flawed and divisive, King is completely oblivious to it because for the great majority of American history, individuals of his ilk have benefited by fostering such a flimsy worldview.
So, for the sake of dropping a few gems, here are a few contributions from non-white Americans that King couldn't live without.
(Photo Credit: iowastartingline.com)
We'll start with George Washington Carver. He invented adhesives, axle grease, bleach, buttermilk, chili sauce, instant coffee, linoleum, mayonnaise, synthetic rubber, talcum powder, shaving cream, bio diesel fuel, and, of course, peanut butter, and many other inventions. Frederick Jones invented refrigeration for trucks and railroad cars that prevented massive food spoilage, and Dr. Daniel Hale Williams pioneered open heart surgery.
U.S. Marine Corp Sargent Adolphus Samms was instrumental in advancing space flight by inventing a parachute release mechanism, rocket engine pump feed system, air frame center support, the multiple stage rocket that has been copied by every country with money enough to join the space race, the air breathing booster, and the rocket motor fuel feed system.
Lewis Latimer invented an improved production method for carbon filaments and was hired by Thomas Edison three years later. His work is what made the lightbulb, which kept exploding and wearing out quickly when using Edison's method, possible.
These are only five men born in the United States and they have touched lives of billions of people across the globe. And these five people only lived in the last 150 years!
That's not even to mention the impact of the Moors, the Egyptians, the Phoenicians, Ethiopians (Nubians), the Persians and the Chinese on early European development. Alphabets, numbers, algebra, geometry, soap, deodorant and much more came from non-white civilizations. Without the Moors, Europe's dark ages would likely have lasted much longer.
That's just the tip of the iceberg.
I could go on forever mentioning names of inventors, non-white educators and military leaders whose contributions made western civilization possible, but I will not.
The consensus among researchers, archaeologists and scholars is that the concept of civilization is around 10,000 years old with some outliers believing it may be at least twice as old as that.
Additionally, new studies suggest the entire white "race" as we know it is only around 6,000 years old according to National Geographic. The Minoans are believed to be Europe's oldest civilization, dating back to around 5,000 years ago. So, we're to believe the world languished in the thousands of years it took western civilization to get up and running? Riiiiight.
These documented and academically accepted facts so utterly rip King's belief system to shreds. I'll sip my coffee contently in the knowledge of that.
We can't continue letting people who espouse white supremacy from "respected" positions of society walk out the house with a incomplete worldview.