Home Opinion “Privilege”: Another Futile Ad Hominem

“Privilege”: Another Futile Ad Hominem

Debates with Leftists often end with them pointing out one’s supposed ‘privilege’ as a straight, white man, particularly on issues such as BLM or gender inequality; but what relevance does this actually have to a discussion?

To dismiss one’s views on the basis of ‘privilege’ is but a feeble ad hominem attempting to silence debate, as if using the word ‘privilege’ as an insult holds power. As a straight, white man myself, I am frequently told my opinion on BLM is irrelevant as a result of my ‘white privilege’ – this doesn’t sound like the strive for ‘equality’ that the BLM movement supposedly promotes…

Whether I do or don’t hold such an advantage due to my race, sexuality or gender is a topic of another opinion piece, but for the purposes of debate, this attack on one’s identity only demonstrates a lack of substance in the accuser’s argument.

Here is a perfect example of the attempt to segregate all demographics. Why not ‘all’ refugees? “Let Queer Refugees in – Refugee Action protest 27 July 2013 Melbourne” by John Englart (Takver) is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

In spite of this, the constant application of identity politics presents absolutely nothing for the progressive way of thinking that the Left claim to uphold. It is not as if my opinion is less valuable on the basis of these factors – or is it because I’m a straight, white man that that view is now seen as acceptable? Should one accuse a homosexual or BAME individual’s views of being irrelevant on the basis of these factors, one would be instantly outcast as a homophobic racist, and rightly so.

Arguably, it could be that because of my sexuality, race and gender, I have not had the same experiences of discrimination and therefore lack a full understanding of what it is like to be the victim of racial profiling, or a homophobic attack. On the other hand, not having experienced these unforgivable incidences does not invalidate my opinion or make me any less worthy of being given a platform from which to express my views.

In the aftermath of George Floyd’s unjust death, I promoted and stuck up for the BLM movement (until they turned more radical and violent, that is). I was subject to abuse from all kinds of people. I was ‘virtue-signalling’ and ‘whitesplaining’, apparently; but then on social media, white people are told that if we don’t speak out for BLM we ‘take the side of the oppressor’, so what is it you want us oh-so-privileged straight, white males to do?

Credit: TPUK

To be frank, no one is oppressed in the West – this is another false narrative pushed and perpetuated by the Left. I am not denying that someone may be subject to social discrimination, such as a violent racist or homophobic attack, for example – but in the eyes of the law, all genders, races and sexualities are equal. Yes, minority groups may be more prone to falling victim to such condemnable violence, but that is not oppression.

Simply, my race has absolutely nothing to do with my views on BLM – had there been a person of colour promoting my ideas, sticking up for BLM, they would have been praised and virtually knighted by the repugnant and self-righteous liberal Left.

“Black Lives Matter Protest, Seattle WA” by Kelly Kline is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Time and time again I am told I cannot hold a valuable opinion on the basis of me being a straight, white man. However, do not think for a second that I am victimising myself; I am not, and I do not see myself as a victim. The point I am illustrating is that, as I have passionately spoken about before, identity politics is damaging for progression.

For male, female, white, black, gay, straight people: if we are to progress, then we need to leave identity politics behind and not attribute it to every political argument. It holds such little significance, yet has caused more social divide in the last 6 months than the segregation of races 60 years ago.

Admittedly, as an antagonist, I seek to make satirical and cynical jokes on social media about how straight, white men are the most oppressed demographic in the west. Of course, this is untrue, but I receive a swarm of ‘liberals’ coming to deliver abuse. Personally, I think that seems rather illiberal from these arrogantly self-proclaimed, morally superior people, who in fact are single-minded autocrats. Is it for this reason that BAME and LGBT individuals are subject to despicable racism and homophobia from the Left, on the basis of supporting the loathsome President Trump?

President of the United States Donald Trump speaking with supporters at an “An Address to Young Americans” event hosted by Students for Trump and Turning Point Action at Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona.
Picture by: Gage Skidmore. Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Soon, we’ll all have a league table of each attribute that determines our level of ‘privilege’ and thus how much abuse we should accordingly be receiving. The liberal Left assigning different demographics all a different level of value is exactly what is killing politics. It fuels segregation and the universally dreaded ‘woke’ culture. It is exactly what makes me so embarrassed about my generation.