Dear white people,
I need your help. Often, then the talk of white privilege comes up, one of you says something to the effect of, “It doesn’t count for poor whites. It’s really more economical!”, to which I usually respond that money has nothing to do with this type of privilege, to which the rebuttal is something to the effect of, “Actually, poor blacks have MORE privilege, because there are more programs for them!”, to which I ask exactly what programs, to which I hear something to the effect of, “They’re out there! You just have to sign up for them!” which does not answer my question at all. That would be like me saying that you have more cars than me, and then you ask me exactly what are these cars of which I speak, and I just rephrase, “You have all those cars! Just look! Just go out to the parking lot!”
I’m sure you know how many cars you own, and you know where you parked it. But what if there is some truth to my claim that you have more cars? I mean, you signed just that one title, but maybe you sleepwalked to a dealership and bought another one! It’s possible you have a whole other car, and you don’t even know, but I do, because I SAID you do, and it’s your own fault for not knowing about the other car you have! JUST LOOK AT THE GODDAMN CAR, GARY!
So like the car that I just said you have but didn’t specify what type of car it is or where in the lot it is, I need some help from you, Greg. Just telling me that there are a bunch of programs isn’t telling me WHAT those programs are. I know you don’t mean welfare or food stamps, because that is for everyone under a certain economic level, and besides, more whites have benefitted from them, as they always have since their inceptions. It’s too late for me. I grew up abject poor, and my mother had to be on welfare and disability and food stamps and a bunch of other programs in order to make ends meet, but they were offered to everyone in our dire straits regardless of race. We STILL wound up homeless when I was in high school, and we lost nearly everything of what little we had. So since you are MUCH more apt at social work and more resourceful than us poor black people, please enlighten me. What are these programs that white people know about that no black people know about, but are apparently exclusive to black people? I need names. Where is OUR goddamn car? It will help me cause more tension during Thanksgiving dinner.
I know you can’t be talking about welfare, because as far back as 1935, the social safety net was not specifically made for black people. In fact, in many ways, attempts were made to exclude black people from benefits. Due to the high unemployment and needing to take on “off the books” jobs, black people could never prove their income, and they were excluded from many services. Also, many of the criteria were state-determined, so this allowed states to openly discriminate or reduce the amount of help that black people received.
You can’t be talking about HUD, The Department of Housing and Urban Development was created specifically to help house the most vulnerable of society, but they were thinking poor and old people. HUD did nothing to stop state-sanctioned redlining, which ghettoized blacks and kept them from attaining collective economic growth. I can see why you may have thought that the Department of Housing and URBAN Development was strictly for black people, though. Just keep in mind that HUD was born long before “Urban” was code for “niggers”.
I’m sure you don’t think that law enforcement programs like Broken Glass Policy and Stop and Frisk are “benefits”. As nice as it seems that there are more police in a particular neighborhood keeping it safe, It has done very little to help reduce crime. They have done wonders to foment distrust amongst the police and the communities, though! Each group sees each other as the aggressor and criminals, and both parties are partially correct! Some police took advantage of their power to participate in criminal acts, and others justified their harsh/dismissive treatment of individuals in black neighborhoods by stating that they were inherently more violent and less intelligent. Black people saw that they could not trust the police upon seeing them do criminal acts, so they took matters into their own hands. Other black people, since they could not get decent jobs (see redlining), took advantage of lack of decent police protection to make money on their own, any way they could, and that usually meant resorting to crime. This is the social equivalent of the MC Escher hands drawing each other. It’s already been proven in New York that when Stop and Frisk stopped, crime went down. You cannot convince me that me being stopped and put on the ground for various reasons every week while I was trying to go to school or work was a “benefit”.
So…now that we’ve covered the obvious go-tos, pleeease…tell me what these programs are! The fate of the black community depends on you, oh disdainful white person. If black and brown people would use these programs that all of you white people claim exist, then we’d FINALLY rise up out of poverty and have something to leave their progeny. If you do this, I will be forever grateful. If you can’t name any, don’t worry. I’ll make sure you’re well rested. I got a deal on really comfortable stadium seats. You can take all of them.
You ol’ incompetent black friend