Of course it does, silly!
I found this piece and thought it was an interesting checklist of indicators that Black Male Privilege exists. Some of the points and examples aren’t sex-positive (Ex: 15. I can purchase pornography that typically shows men defile women by the common practice of the “money shot.” and 26. When I consume pornography, I can gain pleasure from images and sounds of men causing women pain.), but I don’t expect as much from Blackademics. One of the most disappointing aspects of engaging in intellectual discourse about the lives of Black people is how many academics still find ways to condemn elements of sex and sexuality that don’t fit into an accepted, often cisgendered-heterosexual puritanical framing designed to maintain “respectability”. Black folks still cling to these notions of acceptable sexuality and continue to exclude women from embracing and enjoying sexual acts that are deemed “demeaning” to women.
A panel on how the “Black Church” influences the current state of the “Black Family”.
What’s missing here?
Overall, though, this is worth a read, if only for the fact that it does provide solid examples of ways in which Black men can navigate society that differ from how Black women can. It even begins by explaining how hard it may be for Black men believe they have any privilege, given how harshly they’ve been treated by Whites. Yet, it finds a way to exemplify how being men still gives them the edge in the privilege realm. When poor White people ask “Privilege? What privilege? I’ve never been given anything in my life! I’m struggling too!”, we respond with “You’re White. You still have that advantage.” I kinda need brothers to acknowledge and accept that being men gives them a similar advantage.
Many recent online discussions about feminism in the Black community center around Black women not needing the help of a movement that would liberate women (45. I have the privilege of believing that feminism is anti-black.). I find that troubling, to say the least. It suggests that either Black women are afforded the same rights and social equity within our communities and don’t have to worry about gender-based discrimination (there’s not a single statistic that would validate that claim, by the way) or that Black women are not granted these things… and don’t need to be. The tendency to accuse Black women who believe in women’s rights as being agents planted to work for the government to destroy the Black community is 1. contender for the stupidest idea to ever come from a Black person’s mind and 2. paranoid, conspiracy theory-based mumbo jumbo likely inspired by a life of eating lead paint chips and snorting asbestos.
Either way of thinking is completely wrong and completely detrimental to Black girls and women and to the community as a whole. Black women continue to be blamed for the majority of the social problems in the Black community, and that is very much related to the male privilege Black men benefit from (78. My “strength” as a man is never connected with the failure of the black family, whereas the strength of black women is routinely associated with the failure of the black family). I cringe whenever I hear brothers go on and on about how Black women are destroying our community by spreading HIV, having too many kids out-of-wedlock, and being “hoes”. Then, the same people whine and lament that Black women are more successful than Black men, again skewing data to fit an agenda that makes them out to be victims or some White supremacy plot created by the “Willie Lynch Letter“.
Black Male Privilege means believing that Black women are responsible for the sexual harassment and assault they receive because they are somehow helping men treat them poorly.
Oh yes, brothers, you have male privilege and included in it is the privilege of believing that because YOU don’t behave a certain way, that women’s claims of mistreatment must be wrong, exaggerated, or intentional lies to bring men down. You can believe that because it is the gift that society has given all men– having your word be respected as your bond and bearing more weight than that of a woman’s.
Black Male Privilege is still earning more money than Black women, despite Black women obtaining more college degrees than Black men.
Black Male Privilege is being made the face of victims of fatal police brutality against unarmed Black people when Black girls andwomen are killed to the same degree.
I’ll wait while you count the numbers… carry the one… and oh! lightbulb!!
I mean… Someone is going to read this as me bashing Black men because that’s the boring, predictable way to go about absorbing the truth, right? It’s hard to accept that such a beleaguered man would ever be in a position to be oppressive, however passively (is “passive oppression” a thing? I say yes!). It’s true though, and when people have privilege, they tend to not want to confront it and accept that it gives them certain advantages because that might suggest that their accomplishments are not completely achieved by “merit”, right? Right.
Black people have faced the harshest treatment, globally, of any group because every other group has conspired and worked together to subjugate Black people and keep us at the bottom. While non-Black people of color have experienced colonialism and exploitation, racism and discrimination, they still rely on anti-Blackness to get ahead; the common denominator is anti-Blackness. But for Black men to suggest that there is no difference in how Black women are treated, by others and by Black men themselves, is a Black ass lie that needs to die. Today. Let’s end this nonsense and move forward with finding healing so we can rebuild our communities together, honestly and with a strong conviction that we need each other and cannot do this without each other.
Note: If you’ve ever used any of the responses below when a sista has spoken about some experience she has had at the hands of a Black man, you might wanna check your privilege, famalam.
Street Harassment Bingo created by Trudy at Gradient Lair in response to the vitriol received
during our campaign to help victims of street harassment.