I am an old white male. Consequently, I ought to be racked with an overwhelming sense of guilt during all my waking hours and troubled by nightmares in my sleep. At least that is what I am being told ad infinitum by the so-pure-of-heart, progressive, frequently teary-eyed social justice warriors. People like, for instance, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young. They never stop reminding me of all the advantages of my “white privilege”, exercised apparently to the detriment of all non-white folk.
True, the terminology is less often heard here than in the US, its Australian counterpart is “institutionalised racism”, which means the same thing. Rather strange, though, is the fact that they are at a complete loss to elaborate on my white privilege or on institutionalised racism, while I, myself, am also totally clueless about what it could mean. Still, there must be something to it, how else could the SJWs be so absolutely certain of its validity. In my case it could well be my unbridled wickedness — a trademark of my race, gender, longevity and culture, as claimed by the politically correct activists — that blinds me to the despicable errors of my ways. As for my accusers, it might be that they simply cannot find words and phrases severe enough to do justice to my turpitude.
And that’s not all. I grossly compound my culpability by having the hide my pride in the magnificent achievements of people of white European origin, the branch of humanity to which I belong, even though I personally contributed nothing to its successes.
It is beyond dispute by any standard, even that of the bleeding-heart progressive champions of the oppressed, that practically all that is good, desirable and advantageous to mankind was brought about by peoples of white European descent. Being of an ambitious, curious and adventurous mindset, my fellow pale people unlocked more and more of nature’s secrets and utilised that knowledge to make life easier, more pleasant and enjoyable.
It must also be acknowledged, to be sure, that prominent European nations conquered most of the world and lorded over it for many generations, benefiting greatly from the exploitation of the natural resources of the subdued lands and even the labour of its peoples. While appreciating the mercenary aspect of colonialism, it must also be understood that “might is right” was the openly accepted and practiced ethos of the times, not only by the colonisers but also by the subjugated peoples. It is historical fact that tribal wars in many relatively undeveloped societies were a constant phenomenon prior to colonisation. The more powerful tribes and nations dominated and exploited the weaker ones as a matter of inherent right of the strong over the weak. (That has remained unchanged to this day, only its practice is usually more subtle now.) As a matter of fact, one effect of colonisation was often the suppression of tribal warring within the colonies.
The overwhelming strength of the colonisers was the direct result of their advanced technologies, equipping them with superior weapons, bolstered by sophisticated military strategies and the discipline of their troops, all of which were of their own making. In other words, they simply claimed the right to make use of their own achievements, as did every group, tribe and nation and which they continue to do.
Besides, colonisation was far from wholly detrimental to those on the receiving end of it. Most colonies, particularly those of the British Empire, benefited enormously from it. Roads, railways, water and power supply utilities as well as educational, health and other public institutions were built by the colonisers, which were all left behind when they departed and most of which continue to serve the now independent countries very well to this day. Good governance and public administration were also established in the colonies, as was the rule of law with a sophisticated justice system. As a time-tested rule of thumb, the success of ex-colonies since independence is directly proportional to the degree of their retention and maintenance of those institutions.
And even now, when we are way past the colonial era, who is first in line — often the only one in the line — to provide assistance when some disaster or calamity occurs anywhere in the world, such as the AIDS epidemic, an Ebola outbreak, a volcanic eruptions, devastating tsunamis or other natural calamity? Why it is the nations of predominantly white European descent that answer the call? It’s because they are the wealthiest, best able to afford to help, cry the accusers of white privilege, which is perfectly true. What they omit to mention is that those wealthy nations became wealthy, and endeavour to stay that way, by their own efforts. That is hardly a valid reason to be condemned.
Yes, I am an old white male and modestly proud of it.