Social Question

ETpro's avatar

Hey white guys, you want some cheese with that whine?

Asked by ETpro (34247 points ) August 9th, 2012

If you are a white guy, married with children—as I am—please forgive the provocative tone of the question. But really, I’m getting tired of hearing the “What about us?” refrain from a group that is, in the USA, still far and away the ruling class. So after a series of shootings and bombings carried out by white supremacists (yes, the Sikh Temple shooting was just the last in a long string) I thought I’d better ask this in a way that gets the attention of my fellow American white, heterosexual males. And as multiculturalism spreads in Europe and elsewhere, feel free to chime in if you’re not in America, but this theme is meaningful to you.

In this video, Bill the white guy captures the thought perfectly. Let’s be honest. Whites made up 69.1% of the US population in the 2010 Census. In 2009, the median net worth of white households in the US was $113,149 while Hispanics were at $6,325 and blacks just $5,677. And how many times do you hear about gangs of gay bigots beating up straight guys?

I’m with Bill. If we white guys ever do become an oppressed minority, I’ll be with you on the picket lines. I’ll yell, “Hey hey, ho ho, white suppression’s got to go.” just as loudly as all my fellow white guys.

But seriously, are we there yet? Are we so afraid to share that our political advertising has to use dog-whistle appeals to racism, sexism and gender bigotry to secure even more political power for straight whites males?

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31 Answers

mazingerz88's avatar

Depends. What kind of cheese-? : )

tom_g's avatar

Yep. White guys consider themselves to be victims. Even the ones are are hurting due to horrible economic policies have been convinced that the least powerful – and least responsible – groups are their enemies are responsible for their situation. This is no accident.

bookish1's avatar

Appeals to racism and sexism to attract beleaguered white men who feel they are losing power is not a new phenomenon in American politics…

Linda_Owl's avatar

While many white families have suffered set-backs in their standard of living (& many have had their homes foreclosed on & have suffered job losses) .... the financial situation for the non-whites has been much more severe. The unemployment figures for non-white individuals is much higher than it is for white individuals. I do not see how anyone with at least two brain cells to rub together can not see this fact for themselves – but somehow the Republicans seem to manage to live in the land of denial. (maybe I should have said Politicians instead of Republicans – but the Republicans seem to want to drown-out any one who does not agree with them)

YARNLADY's avatar

@bookish1 Great Answer

phaedryx's avatar

The reality is that the percentage of ‘whites’ in the USA is declining. White males are losing influence/power.

Not necessarily a bad thing

JLeslie's avatar

I always wonder when Christian white men truly are a small minority in America if they will pause for a second and be grateful for all the minorities who faught for civil rights. If when they are treated well, they will realize the people now with the majority power didn’t take advantage of their position.

wundayatta's avatar

I’m sorry, but I don’t understand this. It’s like there’s nothing here to see folks. Go about your business.

People like to whine, sure. And politicians are going to pander to any group that has a complaint if they think the support of that group will help them get elected.

But you tell me what white guys are complaining? I’m sorry. I just don’t see it. Yeah, there may be a few here and there with a stick up their asses. As far as I can tell, most of them are pigs who aren’t smart enough to graduate from elementary school.

But this isn’t really a question. It’s a rant. And it’s a rant about a problem that doesn’t exist. You say so, yourself.

Do you think we should have a new category of questions called rants? That could be fun. I like ranting. Doubt if anyone noticed that, though. ;-)

JLeslie's avatar

@wundayatta You don’t live in the right part of the country to hear it.

wundayatta's avatar

Still, @JLeslie, even if I did hear it, that doesn’t make it a significant issue. I seriously doubt that there are enough loser white guys to be concerned about. And if there are, well, why should anyone be concerned about losers? I mean, they are losers, right?

JLeslie's avatar

@wundayatta I would agree it is a minority of men moaning and complaining about these things. Maybe where the OP lives there are a lot of those white men though? I don’t know, hopefully he will chime in.

hiphiphopflipflapflop's avatar

The Right has historically and globally meet with much success by appealing to men of the lower middle class by blaming all their ills on the Other, the powerless, and intellectuals in academia, very conveniently distracting them from the actions of those who do have power. Why should they discard this from their playbook now?

‘With measured steps they walked in line.’

Mariah's avatar

@wundayatta Check out Reddit’s men’s rights page – granted, plenty of the posts there make perfectly valid points.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@wundayatta Do they vote? Do they hire? Do they decide who gets into college and who doesn’t? Are they ever cops, or DAs, or judges? Are they ever in charge of who gets to receive government help and who doesn’t? Or who gets a bank loan? Are they able to make conferences a hostile enough environment that women and PoC opt out of going and miss out on networking opportunities? What about informal networking opportunities, like golfing or playing World of Warcraft – are they able to make those spaces hostile to those who aren’t white dudes? Sorry, but even “losers” can have lots of power.

Aethelflaed's avatar

Oh, god, Reddit. I tense up just at the thought.

TexasDude's avatar

@Aethelflaed, fuck Reddit. It’s filled with some of the most degenerate losers I have ever been exposed to.

@ETpro, you’re asking this question to Fluther? Lololol

wundayatta's avatar

@Aethelflaed FOr me, sexism, which is what you are talking about, is different from loserdom. There’s a difference between people acting from prejudice and people whining about “their rights” or something.

Whiners aren’t really a problem because there aren’t so many of them, and if they are whiners, then they aren’t doers. These people are losers. It’s the people who act with discrimination that are the problem. They are doers, not whiners. They are assholes. You are talking about assholes, not whiners, which is what this question is about.

bookish1's avatar

@wundayatta: I see the difference you’re talking about, but it seems to me that the assholes have the power that they have in part because they have a lot of the whiners convinced that they have the same interests!

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Nullo's avatar

Rather than be brought low, I’d like to see everyone else be brought up. There is some unacceptable anti-maleness in society, certainly in television and advertising and so also in some peoples’ minds. I want to see it stop, and if that means eating whiny cheese, then so be it.

rooeytoo's avatar

White males are losing their control and it is terrifying them so they have to whine, what else could they do???? Females are excelling in school, winning gold medals, becoming doctors, MBA’s and even playing football (albeit in their underwear but at least they are playing the boys game). Black males can run faster and dunk basketballs and dance too! What is left for the white male to do?

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ETpro's avatar

@mazingerz88 Would head cheese do?

@tom_g That is a profound and powerful observation.

@bookish1 That’s certainly true. You’d think we;d mature sooner or later though. I guess many of us have.

@Linda_Owl All true.

@phaedryx This is true. And in that case, rather than alienate those who will eventually wield electoral power, it would make better sense to reach out to them now and seek political alliance.

@JLeslie That was my point to @phaedryx. Why should they expect far better than they gave?

@wundayatta Here are some links that perhaps will make my point.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

ETpro's avatar

@wundayatta What really led me to ask this question was Mitt Romney and his surrogates regularly resorting to the race dog-whistle in their campaign speeches and advertising. Romney’s constant refrain is “This president doesn’t understand America…” when the reality seems more to be that Obama understands average Americans while Romney is hopelessly out of touch. “This president is going around the world apologizing for America—a favorite right-wing refrain—but one that bears no relation to fact. They are out with a totally false ad claiming that Obama is going to make it easier for “welfare Queens” to live on welfare with no requirement to work. The truth is the DHS is making it easier for state governors to set their own rules on return to work. This toughens work requirements instead of weakening them. Republican governors, including Romney when he was Governor of Massachusetts, sought this very change.

You have Romney surrogates constantly calling Obama the Food Stamp President when the fact is the Bush Administrations policies crashed the economy and put millions of Americans on food stamps—the majority of them white, by the way. You have Romney’s surrogates saying Obama is a Saul Alinsky socialist. Who even knows who Saul Alinsky was? He was a writer, thinker and community organizer in California who died in 1972 when Obama was just 12 years old and had never set foot in California. But what do angry white men who know they are getting screwed hear in Alinsky? “Jew.” He’s the other. Obama’s the other. The Other is out to get what little you poor white’s have got. He might be a Muslim. We need to see his Birth Certificate to prove he was even born here. Why won’t he release his college transcripts. He got into Harvard because he was black. And thus, the big money boys like the Kochs use Republican politics to blame the powerless while they continue to push for public policy changes that let a tiny elite exploit the masses for their own benefit.

ETpro's avatar

@wundayatta I don’t want to keep flogging a dead horse, but I ran across this tonight and it certainly shows how prevalent extreme bigotry is in America. Look at the picture, which certainly seems quite innocent, and then scroll down to see what social Q&A users came up with when asked to “Caption this.”

JLeslie's avatar

@ETpro Yes, why should they? I guess the typical answer is two wrongs don’t make a right.

In America we have plenty of white men who had nothing to do with, and have nothing to do with today, descriminating against minorities. So, in my opinion we can’t continue to have affirmative action and quotas forever. Before I moved to Memphis I would have voted to get rid of affirmative action if it was on a ballot in front of me. I agreed with California doing away with quotas for entrance into their universities. But, living here makes me unsure what I would do now, especially if it were a vote on a local level. I bring it up because there is a perception black and Hispanics actually get more of a break or preference over white people, because of these policies.

To add to your rant about Obama, the last was a facebook friend of mine told me information is coming out Obama went to school in Indonesia and one has to be an Indonesian citizen to go to school there. That I really should start getting my news from other sources. That Obama’s step dad adopted him and got him citizenship. Man, these people just won’t give it a rest. I informed him it is no secret Obama went to school in Indonesia, it is not news. Even if he was a citizen there as a child, which I have no idea if he was, that does not take away that he was born in America and is a citizen here. He was a child, he didn’t swear an oath to the other country, he was given citizenship because of a parent. That is even if it is true, which I seriously question, I really have no idea.

tranquilsea's avatar

Louis CK nailed it in a pokingly humorous way. Who would want to give that up? The best defence is a vigorous offence.

ETpro's avatar

@tranquilsea Thanks for that link. That is outrageously funny!

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