The Problem with Terminology

Political Discussion, Uncategorized
  • The problem with the term White Privilege is where the term begins to break down. The truth is, this term can only account for a Western-normative phenomenon, and not the phenomenon of power-holds in Eastern locals or countries in the West where light skin/white culture is not the norm.
  • Terms like White or “Male/Female” are symptomatic of the overreaching and flawed logic of humanity’s propensity for binary thinking. Constructive thinking is always trying to simplify, compact, and maintain compartmentalized categories. This happens largely as a way to simplify semantics (it is hard, for example, to refer to every race, ethnicity, and region directly and efficiently, so terms like White arise as a way to simplify discussion and identification). However, we need to fight this tendency, or at least fight the fallacy that these terms are inherent in humanity, that they simply exist and are not created.[1]

[1]The points I bring up here are not meant to be an advocacy for relativism; I insist in the truth that language is inherently flawed in describing… well, anything. I also insist in the truth that language inherently favors the flavor of its privileged benefactors. I insist in the truth that people gain, measure, and mediate power based on subscriptions for or against things like “proper” language usage, even though these terms are flawed, imperfect and inherently inaccurate.


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