Note: This piece does not delve into details of the 2019 college admissions bribery scandal. Here is a good article for that.
To the Daily Wire reader who might stumble upon this,
Nope, this uncovering of higher ed’s unspoken truth isn’t equivalent to Jussie Smollett’s hoax. (Sometimes you gotta make the reach before it’s actually made, lol.) While Smollett’s case of fraud is a proven anomaly, this high-profile bust of fraudulent college admissions shone light on the darkest corners of an old, sketchy back alley that has allowed well-connected and well-paid (and almost always White) families to shit all over our proud “meritocracy” for generations.
Power moves such as funding new campus buildings and haughty scholarships, or more bluntly, throwing large amounts of money at the right people, have secured spaces at colleges and universities for countless (overwhelmingly White) students of socially elite backgrounds over the years.
“Why are you picking on wealthy White families?”
- They’re the main offenders.
- I can’t “pick on” people who have 7-15 times my college debt to spend on buying their children college acceptance. Never mind the high-end high schools and test prep resources already at their disposal. The audacity to simply bust out a checkbook to win—not even as a last option-type move—is systemic bullying, a level of picking-on I simply can’t compete with.
- The hyper-competitiveness. The manipulation of systems. The mediocrity required to make such a scam a viable option. The nerve to pose as a D1 athlete! All are symptoms of Whiteness, the real problem, an ethos that drives people to be social gluttons in an attempt to have everything and everyone (e.g. schools, coaches, job markets) revolve around their bloated social presences. It’s a maddening illness White people are the primary sufferers of, though non-White people can also suffer from it.
If you’re a regular ATC reader or find yourself agreeing with everything I have said on principle, you may wonder why I’m spelling it all out like this. It’s not just for the hypothetical (hopefully real) right-leaning reader or two that stumble upon this piece. It’s also for my vocally not-racist White brothers and sisters (but mainly brothers). For instance, take this tweet from Corey J. Miles, a sociology PhD student at Virginia Tech, shortly after the cheating scandal story broke:
Things white people think Black people get because of race:
Things white people think have nothing to do with race:
Health care disparities
— Corey J. Miles (@CoreyMiles__) March 13, 2019
And the various responses from White men triggered by the (inaccurately) perceived blanket statement:
Let’s not place all people born white in the same box. Personally, I am tired of persons stating all white people are the same. How is such a statement any different than saying gay, lesbian, African American, Latino, or another other group is all the same? Stop all ignorance.
— Dan Blondeau (@blondeau_dan) March 18, 2019
Stop generalizing. Say ‘some white people’ or even ‘lots of white people’, but believe me when I tell you I don’t think like that. I know it’s difficult to believe but some of us white folk don’t hold any prejudice or opinions. I know what you’re saying, but it’s some, not all
— bryan upfield (@BryanUpfield) March 15, 2019
The proceeding discussion between Dan Blondeau, Corey and others is particularly frustrating. Ideally, someone like Dan is a social justice force to be reckoned with: a White individual aware enough to not consciously do things that maintain the harmful dominance of White identity. In practice though, someone like Dan can be tricky since their understanding of where they fit in the grand scheme of things relies on distance from Whiteness. So when Whiteness is broadly criticized, Dan is not in a place to accept that the greatest vehicle of Whiteness is obviously White people because, well…Dan is a White person. But not like that. You know?
The discussion then becomes about how social groups are not monolithic—a point non-White and LGBTQ individuals are all too familiar with—rather than a more productive discussion about how White people, collectively, are the main roadblock in a national acceptance of racism affecting pretty much everything.
When a conversation on Whiteness gets to that point, it’s hard to feel like we can make more progress on race relations. Gladly, a number of White women calmly yet intelligently pushed back on their offended racial peers in the Twitter conversation featured above (not to say White women can’t exhibit the same defensiveness).
I’m under the impression that if any White person can understand why “White people” statements aren’t nearly as harmful as “(Black/Asian/Latinx) people” statements, then White people, collectively, can someday get it. Until then, people like Corey J. Miles have to keep tweeting and I have to keep writing.