THIS confronting footage shows the moment a stranger unleashed on a Muslim woman in the middle of a shopping mall. Rahila tries to explain why she is dressed the way she is. Rahila is shocked as the man confronts her in front of several people. When she asks what she should do and how Australians should dress, he becomes more agitated and lets loose with a series of expletives. The woman, year-old Rahila, who normally wears a hijab, agreed to be filmed by the documentary makers in a niqab.
The man walks away after abusing Rahila. The law student, who moved to Australia from Afghanistan six years ago, said while she wears the veil she had never worn a niqab before. Rahila was left shaken following the experiment and said she was shocked by some of the reactions she received. Later during the program, Rahila attends a Reclaim Australia rally with surprising results after two women in attendance stand up for her when police tell her to leave.
The one-hour documentary puts some revealing survey findings from Western Sydney University into action through a series of hidden camera social experiments. Rahila, 22, said she was nervous about wearing the niqab for the experiment. It also found almost a third of those surveyed had suffered racism within their workplace, while 35 per cent experienced it on public transport or on the street. Almost a third said they have experienced racism within an educational facility while nearly half of indigenous respondents said they experienced racism at sporting events.
However, most people surveyed agreed that it is a positive thing that Australia was culturally diverse and that they would face up to discrimination if they saw or encountered it.
Speaking to news. But white privilege exists because of historic, enduring racism and biases. Therefore, defining white privilege also requires finding working definitions of racism and bias. So, what is racism? One helpful definition comes from Matthew Clair and Jeffrey S. Racism differs from bias , which is a conscious or unconscious prejudice against an individual or group based on their identity. Basically, racial bias is a belief. Racism is what happens when that belief translates into action. For example, a person might unconsciously or consciously believe that people of color are more likely to commit crime or be dangerous.
A person might become anxious if they perceive a black person is angry. That stems from a bias. These biases can become racism through a number of actions ranging in severity, and ranging from individual- to group-level responses:. Both racism and bias rely on what sociologists call racialization. This is the grouping of people based on perceived physical differences, such as skin tone.
This arbitrary grouping of people, historically, fueled biases and became a tool for justifying the cruel treatment and discrimination of non-white people. And while not all white people participated directly in this mistreatment, their learned biases and their safety from such treatment led many to commit one of those most powerful actions: silence. And just like that, the trauma, displacement, cruel treatment and discrimination of people of color, inevitably, gave birth to white privilege. White privilege is—perhaps most notably in this era of uncivil discourse—a concept that has fallen victim to its own connotations.
The two-word term packs a double whammy that inspires pushback. Otherwise, only the choir listens; the people you actually want to reach check out. White privilege is not the suggestion that white people have never struggled. Many white people do not enjoy the privileges that come with relative affluence, such as food security.
Many do not experience the privileges that come with access, such as nearby hospitals. And white privilege is not the assumption that everything a white person has accomplished is unearned; most white people who have reached a high level of success worked extremely hard to get there. Francis E. In a thorough article , education researcher Jacob Bennett tracked the history of the term. But some people of color continued to insist that an element of white privilege included the aftereffects of conscious choices.
Having the ability to maintain that power dynamic, in itself, was a white privilege, and it endures. Legislative bodies, corporate leaders and educators are still disproportionately white and often make conscious choices laws, hiring practices, discipline procedures that keep this cycle on repeat. The more complicated truth: White privilege is both unconsciously enjoyed and consciously perpetuated. It is both on the surface and deeply embedded into American life.
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It is a weightless knapsack—and a weapon. Sometimes the examples used to make white privilege visible to those who have it are also the examples least damaging to people who lack it. But that does not mean these examples do not matter or that they do no damage at all. These subtle versions of white privilege are often used as a comfortable, easy entry point for people who might push back against the concept.
That is why they remain so popular. But the root of these problems is often ignored. This may be true. But the reason even these simple white privileges need to be recognized is that the damage goes beyond the inconvenience of shopping for goods and services. White people become more likely to move through the world with an expectation that their needs be readily met.
What Is White Privilege, Really? | Teaching Tolerance
People of color move through the world knowing their needs are on the margins. Recognizing this means recognizing where gaps exist. White people are also more likely to see positive portrayals of people who look like them on the news, on TV shows and in movies. They are more likely to be treated as individuals, rather than as representatives of or exceptions to a stereotyped racial identity. In other words, they are more often humanized and granted the benefit of the doubt.
They are more likely to receive compassion, to be granted individual potential, to survive mistakes. This has negative effects for people of color, who, without this privilege, face the consequences of racial profiling, stereotypes and lack of compassion for their struggles. This privilege is invisible to many white people because it seems reasonable that a person should be extended compassion as they move through the world. It seems logical that a person should have the chance to prove themselves individually before they are judged.
People of color are more likely to be arrested for drug offenses despite using at a similar rate to white people.
Some people do not survive these stereotypes. In , people of color who were unarmed and not attacking anyone were more likely to be killed by police.
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Those who survive instances of racial profiling—be they subtle or violent—do not escape unaffected. They often suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, and this trauma in turn affects their friends, families and immediate communities, who are exposed to their own vulnerability as a result. A study conducted in Australia which has its own hard history of subjugating black and Indigenous people perfectly illustrates how white privilege can manifest in day-to-day interactions—daily reminders that one is not worthy of the same benefit of the doubt given to another.
Researchers documented more than 1, attempts. The results: 72 percent of white people were allowed to stay on the bus. Only 36 percent of black people were extended the same kindness. They receive it as the byproduct of systemic racism and bias. And even if they are not aware of it in their daily lives as they walk along the streets, this privilege is the result of conscious choices made long ago and choices still being made today.
They are the purposeful results of racism—an ouroboros of sorts—that allow for the constant re-creation of inequality.
Jasper Jones By Craig Silvey
And systemic racism cannot endure unless those powers still hold sway. You can imagine it as something of a whiteness water cycle, wherein racism is the rain. That rain populates the earth, giving some areas more access to life and resources than others. The evaporation is white privilege—an invisible phenomenon that is both a result of the rain and the reason it keeps going.
Who keeps it going? The answers to those questions could fill several books. For example, the ability to accumulate wealth has long been a white privilege—a privilege created by overt, systemic racism in both the public and private sectors. Nor do they close the gap when they work full time, or when they spend less and save more. The gap, instead, relies largely on inheritance—wealth passed from one generation to the next. And that wealth often comes in the form of inherited homes with value.
When white families are able to accumulate wealth because of their earning power or home value, they are more likely to support their children into early adulthood, helping with expenses such as college education, first cars and first homes. The cycle continues. This is a privilege denied to many families of color, a denial that started with the work of public leaders and property managers.
Why does the world think Australia is racist?
Before the crash, people of color were disproportionately targeted for subprime mortgages. And neighborhood diversity continues to correlate with low property values across the United States. According to the Century Foundation , one-fourth of black Americans living in poverty live in high-poverty neighborhoods; only 1 in 13 impoverished white Americans lives in a high-poverty neighborhood. The inequities compound.
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To this day, more than 80 percent of poor black students attend a high-poverty school, where suspension rates are often higher and resources often more limited. Once out of school, obstacles remain. Economic forgiveness and trust still has racial divides. In a University of Wisconsin study, 17 percent of white job applicants with a criminal history got a call back from an employer; only five percent of black applicants with a criminal history got call backs. And according to the National Bureau of Economic Research , black Americans are percent more likely than white people to receive a high-cost mortgage, with Latino Americans 78 percent more likely.