White Privilege Is Boldly Out but Publicly Denied

white privilege

white privilege

Racial tensions in America have grown. African-Americans are jailed more frequently and given longer sentences than a white man would receive facing the same charge. Some Caucasians admit to having this “white privilege” while others deny the fact it exists.

According a survey conducted by The Pew Research Center, between Aug. 8-21, 2016, among 4,971 adults, 56 percent believe Caucasians benefit a great deal from white privilege over African-Americans and other minorities. Twenty-six percent believe white people enjoy a decent number of advantages black people lack.

Only 43 percent say white people do not have much of an advantage over African-Americans. While 29 percent said Caucasians do not have any societal advantage.

In this survey, 92 percent of African-Americans agree that Caucasians do have this white privilege over them, including the 65 percent that say they benefit a great deal. Sixty-five percent of Hispanics agree.

The Huffington Post reported that in 2016, not much had changed since 1954, when there were 100,000 black men incarcerated. In 2016, Compared to Caucasian men, Hispanic men are 2.3 times more likely to be incarcerated, whereas, African-Americans are six times more likely. There were about 800,00 African-American in prison and jails in the U.S., according to the Sentencing Project.

Over 65 percent of prisoners are serving life without parole for a nonviolent offense are African-Americans. Blacks are also more times likely to be jailed while awaiting trial.

A group of Kansas professors conducted a study and found, in Kansas City, a black man under the age of 25 has a 28 percent risk of being stopped by the police while driving or walking. A similar white man has only a 12 percent chance. These are the statistics white privilege produces.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune found that judges in Florida sentence black defendants to longer jail terms in 60 percent of felony cases, 68 percent in serious first-degree crimes, and 45 percent in burglaries.

Kalief Browder, a black teenager, spent over three years in Rikers Island because he was suspected of stealing a book bag. He was released. The chargers were dropped, and he committed suicide a few months later.

Even in criminal cases that hit the media there are instances where white privilege is evident. Two young men, both college students, both athletes, and both committed the same crime. However, they both were sentenced to two completely different prison terms. The white student was allowed to carry out his sentence in the local jail, and white privilege may be a factor.

Former Vanderbilt football player Corey Batey, the young African-American man, must serve a mandatory minimum of 15 to 25 years in prison for raping an unconscious woman. Brock Turner, the white swimmer at Stanford, will only serve six months in jail. Turner was even told he can be released early for good behavior.

Batey’s prison sentence is ridiculous, to some Americans, considering that in both cases there was an ample amount of evidence against them. Two cases, two men, same charges, different outcome. Overall, society wants to believe that there is no white privilege.

Written by Nicole Thompson
Edited by Jeanette Smith

Sources :

New York Daily News: Brock Turner and Corey Batey, Two College Athletes who raped unconscious women,show how the race and privilege affect sentences
The New York Times: Unequal Sentences for Blacks and Whites
Huffington Post: 18 Examples of Racism In the Criminal Legal System
Pew Research Center: Views about whether whites benefit from Societal Advantages split sharply along racial and partisan lines

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of TayebMEZAHDIA’s Pixabay Page – Creative Commons License



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