White Privilege Is Like Driving Your Car Past a Cyclist
Blogger and pastor Jeffrey Wright has found a new metaphor which elucidates the blindness that white Americans have about their own privilege.
Why is talking to a white person about white privilege so difficult? Because white Americans live in a social system that has historically given them easier access to opportunity. When imagining how others have experienced college, getting a job, or encountering a police officer, extending their own experience makes it hard to recognize the flaws in a system that generally plays in your favor.
But blogger and pastor Jeffrey Wright has found a new metaphor which elucidates the blindness that white Americans have about their own privilege. When Wright began riding a bike in Lansing, MI, the capital of America's most automobile-friendly state, he saw a city of drivers completely unaware of how vulnerable he was as a cyclist.
"Now most people in cars are not intentionally aggressive toward me. But even if all the jerks had their licenses revoked tomorrow, the road would still be a dangerous place for me. Because the whole transportation infrastructure privileges the automobile. It is born out of a history rooted in the auto industry that took for granted that everyone should use a car as their mode of transportation. It was not built to be convenient or economical or safe for me."
In her Big Think interview, Majora Carter explains how race does not exist in a vacuum and that class, environment, and health all affect social justice in America:
Read more at A Little More Sauce
Photo credit: Shutterstock
Giving our solar system a "slap in the face"
- A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
- It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
- Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
The climate change we're witnessing is more dramatic than we might think.
A lazy buzz phrase – 'Is this the new normal?' – has been doing the rounds as extreme climate events have been piling up over the past year. To which the riposte should be: it's worse than that – we're on the road to even more frequent, more extreme events than we saw this year.
Once again, our circadian rhythm points the way.
- Seven individuals were locked inside a windowless, internetless room for 37 days.
- While at rest, they burned 130 more calories at 5 p.m. than at 5 a.m.
- Morning time again shown not to be the best time to eat.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.