May I be honest? I don’t really understand the #crimingwhilewhite hashtag as it seems to often imply not that non-white (and let’s be honest, non-most-Asian too) shouldn’t get mistreated, but often just as easily could imply that everyone should be treated equally shitty, it would be okay. This is one of the implications of the privilege discourse that I don’t like people don’t seem to get: you can remove EVERYONE’S privilege equally just by oppressing the shit out of everyone, but not by liberating anyone. Again, I am not saying what “privilege” theory is trying to describe is not real, but what is actually going on structurally coded oppression and privilege is way too soft a word and with implications people don’t think about. I sometimes think its acceptance now by all but the most reactionary elements of our society indicates that people in the know actually realize the implication.
While basic human rights was a myth, the moving from “formal rights” to “formal privilege” is an objective degeneration of liberal discourse. It is more honest about how things function, but the idea that everything is being framed negatively in this matter doesn’t even get acknowledged. One points that out, one is told one is denying privilege and thus rejecting oppression, but honestly the former does not follow from the latter. Furthermore, while racial, sexual, and gender issues cannot be subsumed under a rubric of class, trying to understand them outside of class or as something that is not structural necessary to an economic system is not helpful. (In use of the term, “classism,” for example, makes acknowledging class something of a moral failing instead of a structural result of our current economic relations).
I do not think it is derailing to point this out as an obvious implication of the way liberalized framing of stand-point epistemology have moved the “discourse.” This is what I have meant by that–not a denial of the realities of both exploitative and repressive structures built around ethnicity, race, gender, etc. We must be specific about them, we can’t conflate everything under the rubric of a passive word like “privilege.”