Essay Sample on Prevalence and Effects of White Privilege in Modern Day

Published: 2023-03-06
Essay Sample on Prevalence and Effects of White Privilege in Modern Day
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Race Racism Public relations Social issue
Pages: 8
Wordcount: 1938 words
17 min read

Ever heard the phrase that all people were created equal? Do you believe in this statement? Well, if you do, then you are mistaken. You are yet to hear of the term white privilege. While this term applied though unconsciously, modern scholarship has identified white privilege as an indispensable factor in the current society. It is a term that has the ability to influence modern-day systemic decisions. White privilege is treating the whites as more important people than the people of color. European Americans have access to several privileges that are not enjoyed by the people of color in society. This has been the reason that whites tend to dominate others. This essay will seek to answer the research question, what are the effects of white privilege in modern society? The essay will argue that white privilege has led to poverty, imprisonment, racism, and unemployment of the people of color in the face of the whites.

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White privilege has led to the poverty of the people of color. In the US for instance, poverty is great issue, and it mostly affects people of color. Comparatively, the people of color are poorer than whites (Todd et al. 660). The reason for this is that white people are given the highest chance to access and acquire resources when compared to whites. Police brutality is highest in regions inhabited by people of color, and this instills fear in them making them unable to conduct businesses.

Besides, schools which are situated in areas inhabited by people of color receive lower proportions of education dollars when compared to those in white communities. This leads to lower educational attainment in non-white communities, and this affects their ability to get jobs.

Besides, the allocation of fewer dollars in schools in non-white communities leads to larger class sizes, which makes it difficult for the teachers to address the concerns of individual learners. As a result, the performance of such learners goes down, and many of them lack the requisite grade to join institutions of higher learning, such as colleges and universities (Hayden 125). Besides, schools in these regions have inferior facilities when compared to those in white-dominated areas. A combination of these factors heightens the poverty levels.

There is a great correlation between racism and white privilege. Racism or racial bias means treating one race as superior to the other based on either historical or some cultural notions. Racial bias is usually a belief propagated to demean the non-whites. When racial bias is converted to an action, it becomes racism. Some authors have tried to show the thin line that exists between racism and racial bias (Sullivan 67). In their explanation, they have showed that racism is a product of racial bias. As such, racial bias is the thought-process while racism is the action succeeding the thought process.

For example, one may perceive that people of color are more likely to commit crimes when compared to white people. While this may be conscious or unconscious, it constitutes racial bias. However, racism is more pronounced and action-oriented. For example, when walking in the streets, a person might change the route to avoid walking with another person that he or she considers of a different race. Another example would be a police officer shooting an unarmed person of color for perceiving him or her as dangerous. These examples constitute racism.

One may wonder what the connection between racism and white privilege is. The major connection is that white people tend to use this to subdue people of color. The police and the authorities are likely to discriminate non-white from whites and accord the whites better treatment than the non-whites.

Imprisonment is one of the factors that limit people to express their opinions about various systems of the government. Imprisonment is also used as a way of silencing people about demanding their rights. It is a method that has been successfully used in America to fulfill a political agenda. People of color are the fewest in America, but they account for the largest percentage of those who are imprisoned. Of all the people imprisoned in the US, the people of color constitute 60% (Calzada, Fowler, & Gonzalez 262).

The incarceration rate mostly affects the people of color, with the men being the hardest hit. Research conducted about incarceration in America showed that 1 in every 15 African men is incarcerated compared to 1 in every 106 white men (Foley 225). This shows that men of color have a higher likelihood of getting imprisoned compared to white men.

The high rate of incarceration among the people of color is a confirmation that racial profiling continues to hit America hard. The police and the justice system tend to prejudge people based on the color of their skin. In general, people of color are considered to have a higher tendency of committing a crime when compared to their white counterparts (Lund & Colin 16). Such notions are prejudicial as they are not based on any evidence or facts. This discrimination is seen in aspects like traffic stops where Hispanics and Blacks are more likely to be searched during traffic stops. This is not the same for white motorists who are rarely searched during such stops.

Generally, whites have a better relationship with the police when compared to their non-white counterparts. This relationship is not based on their behavior but by the mere fact that they are white. While the police are supposed to be the source of safety for the citizens, non-whites view them as sources of insecurity and harassment. There are cases where police officers spill bullets to unarmed black people for no apparent reason. In other cases, non-whites have been shot and tormented by police even when they have raised their hands as an act of surrender. There are also cases where non-whites held in custody do not receive assistance from police but their white counterparts do.

White privilege is so explicit in America that there would be need denying it. In schools, the whites have received considerable favor and softer treatment than non-whites who are usually mistreated. Recently, there was a staring contest in one of the schools in America and a black 1 year-old girl was suspended from school for staring at a white girl. While this was a contest, the 12-year old was accused of staring too much at the white girl to the extent of instilling fear in her (Rothenberg 44). This is a single example of the kind of mistreatment that non-whites receive at the hands of whites. There are several such cases which go unreported which put the non-whites at the receiving end.

There are also reports that non-white students are more likely to be suspended than white students. Non-white students get suspended for the slightest mistake and if a similar mistake is committed by a white, he or she is tolerated. This could also be an explanation as to why the educational attainment rate of non-whites stands low.

The other effect of white privilege includes unemployment of the non-whites. The whites tend to acquire employment faster and easily than non-whites. In an interview pitting a white and a non-white with similar qualifications, the white is likely to be favored because most of the hiring officials are whites. Besides, white is considered more skillful and intelligent than non-whites. Even at the workplace, whites have a higher chance of getting promoted more than the non-whites even where their achievements are at par.

Race still pervades any other qualification in the employment industry in America. Before the assessment of other factors such as academic qualifications, skills and experience, many employers look at race as the most defining thing. If a white and non-white tied in features such as skill, experience and academic qualification, the employer will look at race as the defining factor and give the job to the white.

Research has also shown that the level of discrimination is determined by the location of the employer (Sullivan 56). For example, a black person who applies for a job in black neighborhoods such as Chicago has a higher likelihood of being absorbed than one who applies for a similar job in a white dominated region like New York. Therefore, the percentage rate of discrimination is dependent on the region.

In a scenario where applicants have sent application letters for a certain kind of job, the candidate with the white-sounding name is likely to get a callback for the interview while the one with a nonwhite sounding name is not likely to get a callback. This kind of discrimination has led to disparities in labor outcomes with policymakers seeking into means of prohibiting racial discrimination, especially in the hiring process.

Even though some of these policies exist, it is not easy to measure if employers are discriminating based on race since there might be no such evidence (Foley 225). The continued cases of favoritism in the job market have seen more whites get absorbed in jobs at the expense of non-whites. Research also shows that the increased rate of unemployment among non-whites leads to increased poverty levels and lowered education attainment for the non-whites.

White privilege is a tool that is used to determine the quality of health care offered. In the US, there exist disparities as regards access to health care. Non-white usually face challenges when accessing medical care in the US. Even when they are lucky to receive it, it is not as good as that received by their white counterparts. A research conducted by the Sullivan showed that Blacks, and Hispanics have "lower levels of health insurance coverage compared to whites" (54). The lack of insurance coverage means that they are not able to access quality health care even when they need it.

In the recent past, there has been the introduction of Affordable Care Act which sought to seal this gap and ensure that all people in America could access quality health care. While this helped to some extent, the minority groups which consist of non-whites continue to suffer from since most of them have not been enrolled in the ACA. Many of the non-whites live in areas that have poor road network and this makes it difficult for them to access proper medical facilities.

The Medicare was also established with the aim of reducing financial barriers for the lowly-placed citizens in America. Despite this, a majority of the Americans do not have access to proper health care. Many of these lowly-placed people are minorities such as the Hispanics and Blacks (Amico 34). It is also evident that there is unequal sharing of resources between the whites and other groups.

The areas that white people live in have well-equipped hospitals and have qualified medical personnel. Besides, they have good road network which is accessible to all kinds of vehicles. However, the situation is different in areas where non-whites live. Some of these areas do not have well-equipped hospitals. This makes it difficult for the residents to get access to proper health care.

White privilege is can be seen to be a well-choreographed plot to ensure that white people stayed at the helm of the society. The practice is guided by some hidden but conscious choices. For example, the whites prefer on hiring as many of their own to companies and corporations to ensure that they take control of such companies and corporations. This makes the whites have more economic opportunities at the expense of their non-white counterparts. Thus, having the ability to stay atop the corporate ladder is plot by the whites to control the economy.

Other facets of the society such as legislative bodies, educators and corporate leaders are whites and they use this to shape the society.

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