Come for a hilarious 4 minute Daily Show segment! Stay, if ya want, for my serious thoughts as well!
From last night’s The Daily Show:
This deserves more views; she’s a phenomenal Daily Show Correspondent (and Jordan Klepper has been growing on me!), but I thought she was particularly exceptional with this segment last night.
This largely hit home for me because I’m becoming increasingly aware of how painfully spot-on this segment is. Hat tip to commenter 3/5s Compromise for hammering home this point consistently: white privilege means that our voices are not marginalized. It’s one of many crucial facts regarding white privilege, and it’s one that I’ve largely overlooked.
We should absolutely be doing our part to be “Helper Whiteys” when possible. This segment, which is hilarious, is despairingly true. With great privilege comes
great some responsibility; let’s shoot for some responsibility, at least as a start.
As a white dude who actively wants to be a well-informed, competent ally, I’m fully aware of my limitations - by which I mean the depth to which I can relate to and understand issues that I’ll never directly experience. As a result, I largely defer to the smarter voices in the room, and focus on being an active listener - which is a good way to go when I might be reading about feminism at GroupThink or racism at TheSaladBowl. I feel comfortable contributing, but there’s usually more to be gained - for myself, and for everyone - by taking the rare moment that I actually stfu!
But I’ve become too accustomed to my bubbles, which are almost infinitely more informed than 99% of the actual conversations happening in our country (and 100% of anything on CNN). So I need to start becoming more comfortable speaking up - even when it means facing up against my nagging, insecure neuroses - because no matter how clueless I always personally feel, it takes a metric butt-ton less social awareness than I’ve got in order to be miles ahead of the game in the context of our impossibly fucked contemporary American culture. Which, dismally fucked as it is, generally gives more weight to my voice by virtue of my whiteness alone.*
So I’m going to actively become a Helper Whitey**! I encourage all comments and discussion here, but if anyone’s looking to move this post back toward the levity of Jessica Williams’ hyterical clip, please feel free to fire away with any ways that I can start to help!
*Also, my penis. This entire subject matter applies to my male privilege as well.
**And a Helper Schlong. I’ve long been reticent of being a “male feminist” because, to me personally, that name in and of itself throws up a giant red flag with a picture of Hugo Schwyzer’s skeavy face. But I’m ready to take up the banner - and over time, prove that I’m completely sincere, and not just doing it to inveigle women into trusting me before I ask them to take off their clothes while I masturbate into their shoes. Ya know, I’m just going to call myself a feminist, I really don’t think I can shake the creep-vibe off male feminist...