Feminism | Posted by Regina on 11/4/2010

The Entitlement List

the gay best friend accessory: just one type of entitlement

the gay best friend accessory: just one type of entitlement

Entitlement: belief that one is deserving of certain privileges

When men are invading your space (at the supermarket, jogging, the bank, lunch line) and think it’s okay.

“Nice guys” who feel they’re entitled to sex because they treat you well.

When you dress “slutty” ( it doesn’t matter you can be wearing a garbage bag) men feel entitled to comment on how provocative you look and how you deserve anything that THEY do to you because of it.

White people trying to touch POC’s hair.

White people trying to cultural appropriate other people’s cultures.

The N word. ” Why can’t we say it?!?”

Men think it’s ok to say “bitch,” “slut,” “skank” etc etc

The whole Ground Zero mosque fiasco.

White Americans are upset because they feel their privileges are being taken away. It’s an invasion of brown people. They feel entitled, it’s their god given right, to live on stolen land happily.Historically speaking, white people felt it was their god given right to expand their territory in America (manifest destiny). This of course , disregarded the Native American tribes that already occupied these places.

Mansplaining/whitesplaining.

White people feel entitled to a higher standard of living because they worked harder for it, while POC are too lazy to get out of poverty. Obviously they enjoy it so much.
More along the lines of imperialism/capitalism: Americans feels entitled to a higher standard of living too, no matter who it pains. Look at the produce you buy, it’s made by brown people making less than minimum wage. Prison system is a also a system of modern day slavery. In addition, Americans feel entitled to cheaper clothes, chocolate, and oil even though people across the world die because of factories, the political unrest, and the destruction of their environments. Look at the Scramble for Africa.

Then Americans have the audacity to tell POC how to get of poverty. They feel entitled to voice their racist opinions.

Straight people feel entitled to tell gays how to deal with homophobia.

Straight men feel entitled to lesbians (lesbians are just sexual devices for straight men) / believe lesbianism is a show for their entertainment.

Straight women feel entitled to have gay males as accessories best friends.

Straight people think they are the only ones entitled to heaven.

Straight people feel entitled to judge other people’s sexuality. Thinking bisexual women aren’t really bisexual for example and that bisexual men are just really gay.

Entitled to only see hetero relationships in public. For example, seeing two gay men hold hands at a park means they’re rubbing their sexuality in your face.

Have something else to add to the list? Leave it in the comments!

Regina also writes for her own blog

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  • Natalia @ at 11:15 am, November 4th, 2010

    Wow really great article. I think that American culture is definitel paying the prize for their status of “entitlement”

  • Zoe @ at 1:23 pm, November 4th, 2010

    Good list! I try to be aware of when/if I do any of the above listed things. I think I’ve done a good job at not doing these things but I’m not perfect and I’m sure I’ve slipped.

    I’ve always hated how white people say “Why can’t WE say the N word? Blacks say it all the time!” Just…no. It makes you sound like an ignorant asshole, not “cool”, anyhow.

  • Seth @ at 1:43 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I would love to see a list of all the privleges and entitlements of women.

  • kanadra @ at 1:56 pm, November 4th, 2010

    Great list. No one deserves any privilege simply because of their race, gender, age, income, or skin color… Most (All) privileges need to be worked for, and in many of the cases on your list, they’re simply not feasible. Getting what someone deserves, and being entitled are two entirely different things, as well.

    Those are just my thoughts.

  • Marisol @ at 2:36 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I completely agree. I’m American, and I’m not even about to argue that our culture revolves around things we feel entitled to.
    Oh! And my favorite is “whitesplaining”. It’s like when whites ask if my parents are in the service industry or if I like tacos. “Oh, I’m not racist, I love Latinos! I just…” :P

  • Miriam @ at 2:46 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I agree to an extent. However–and maybe this is just semantics–this whole post really sounds like you’re just assuming that all white people or straight people or men feel “entitled” to these things. I’m sure that’s not what you were intending to communicate, but that’s how it looks. I read blogs like yours because I care about social justice and keeping up with the latest news and opinions about fighting for equality. But what, exactly, does this post accomplish, aside from reinforcing stereotypes of whites, men, or straight people as feeling “entitled?”

    I guess what I’m trying to say is that this sort of discourse is counterproductive. We don’t get anywhere by making lists about all the ways in which whites/men/straight people suck. Yes, there’s a lot of prejudice out there. We all know that. That’s why we read blogs like this one. Let’s discuss how we can make things better and how to support marginalized groups rather than demonizing others.

  • Worth Blogging About? « Falling Letters @ at 3:54 pm, November 4th, 2010

    [...] particular post is called “The Entitlement List” and basically lists a series of ways in which certain people feel entitled. For instance: White [...]

  • Marisa @ at 6:01 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I was going to say something, but I think Miriam covered it all pretty well. Other than that, this is a pretty good list.

  • allie @ at 6:02 pm, November 4th, 2010

    i have to agree with miriam, i don’t really understand what you ment by this
    White people trying to touch POC’s hair.
    I’m white, never done that, dont really know anybody who has

    White people trying to cultural appropriate other people’s cultures.
    what exactly do you mean by this, do you mean that i cant hang out with my friends from different races because im white, or try to understand them and appriciate them if you mean white people take and steal other peoples culture well not all white people do this, im white and im dating somebody from a different race, he’s Indian and im sick of the dirty looks i get from people, white and other races its very annoying. instead of seperating people by race,gender why don’t you say we are all equally related and we are all one, or is that to “guilty white person” for you

  • allie @ at 6:27 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I guess what im trying to say is dont generalize, its just not cool. i dont do any of these things that are listed and yes i know some that do, but its not good to stereotype people, im sorry if i got upset in the above post i understand what your trying to say, but it came across as if you were saying all white people are this way, all men are this way, all straight people are this way, and we’re not

  • Roach @ at 6:27 pm, November 4th, 2010

    The West feel entitled to tell the East that their culture is wrong.

  • Nano (Nyxie) @ at 7:29 pm, November 4th, 2010

    a.) Might want to add a disclaimer that you don’t mean the generalizations, just the facets of the stereotypes and specific groups of people, i.e. bigots.

    b.) I think you might be interested in this:

    http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2010/11/04/racial-identity-cannot-be-determined-by-casual-bystanders/

    :D

  • Jill @ at 9:49 pm, November 4th, 2010

    I honestly never understand posts like this. We’re told to help others and such, yet if someone does it always ends up being a “Westerner undermining an Easterner.” Why do we have all these labels? Also, everyone seems to ignore the fact that racism/sexism/prejudice goes both ways. We’re quick to point out how obnoxious all straight white Westerners are, isn’t that prejudice in itself? If someone made an entitlement list for “POC’s” (which I find ridiculous as well, why are white people separate from every other race on the planet?) wouldn’t there be a huge uproar? Why is it okay to be prejudice against people because their ancestors were prejudice?

  • Natalia @ at 11:07 pm, November 4th, 2010

    @ Zoe

    I agree that it makes white people look dumb when they ask about why they can’t say the N word. But I also find it very ignorant when black people say it as well. It was a word that was used as a racist insult. It’s like when girls say “only girls can call each other bitch!”. If you don’t want a guy calling you a bitch, then how is it any better if a girl calls you that? So same thing with the N word. You’d flip if a white man said it, so why is it different just becuase of who says it? That’s fucked.

  • Roach @ at 12:14 am, November 5th, 2010

    But why are black people allowed to use the N word?

  • Julia @ at 10:29 am, November 5th, 2010

    Oh I’ve got one too.
    Why are only girls allowed to walk around holdng hands? Boys doing this are teased and called gay. I think there should be something done against this unfairness.

  • Julia @ at 10:31 am, November 5th, 2010

    Oh god of grammar, help me :D

  • Garen @ at 3:22 pm, November 5th, 2010

    @ Roach

    It’s an attempt at reclaiming the word, the way LGBT people have taken back the words queer, dyke, fag et cetera, except that it’s so steeped in awful, awful history that that’s never going to happen. And I’m a black girl and i fucking hate it when other black pople use the n word, because then it makes it impossible to complain when people who aren’t black use it. It also really trivialises the word and desensitizes people to its use.

    But I’ve never had anyone ask to touch my hair, thank God :/ but to be honest, I like it when people ask questions. Shows that they’re thinking people ;)

  • Samuel W. @ at 6:58 pm, November 5th, 2010

    A black man is a man with dark skin. A Jewish man is a man with Jewish heritage or practicing Judaism. An Asian man is a man with heritage lying in the Asian continent. Racial labels are dirt. But as far as ‘bitch’ goes, I have to disagree. Some women (and men!) act like bitches. It’s easily preventable and is their own fault. For example (but by no means the ONLY example), when high school girls get called bitches for being rude, catty and hateful (if not hurtful and/or mean), not just sarcastic, snotty or hard-edged, bitch is a deserved term, because there ain’t no excuse nor a disease to explain most of that away. It’s also not to dehumanize any set of people, because some of us men act like bitches too. Anyone can be a bitch.

  • Natalia @ at 12:58 pm, November 6th, 2010

    @Samuel W

    When I used the “bitch” example, I was talking about those girls who call their friends bitch out of “love” or just as a nickname….

  • Sasa @ at 7:49 pm, November 6th, 2010

    Great list.

    This list is not generalising. It’s not saying this is something all men/white people/straight people/cis gendered people do. It’s talking about the system e.g. Whiteness as a system.

    Example, as a black female, I can tell you that white people (including my friends) try to touch my hair all the time, and don’t see why I react the way I do. Most of the time they don’t even ask. Because my hair is different, I must accept the fact that people want to touch it, because they’ve never seen anything like it before. They feel ENTITLED to do it.

    However, there are white people I have spoken to who never do this. They’ll ask questions about my hair and will just look at the style. They would find it strange to touch my hair, as it’s an invasion of my personal space.

    It’s just an example, but my point is be happy that you do not do the things on this list if that is the case. :)

  • Miriam @ at 12:20 pm, November 7th, 2010

    @Sasa–There is no “Whiteness” system. White people are incredibly diverse despite the fact that they have the same skin color.

  • regina @ at 12:13 pm, November 8th, 2010

    Whiteness is a social construct–but that doesn’t mean white people don’t benefit from white supremacy. There is whiteness in the system. Denying that means you deny racism.

  • Jill @ at 5:51 pm, November 8th, 2010

    @Regina- Just because white people get benefits in certain situations doesn’t mean it’s okay to lump all white people into one giant group. Maybe we should combine other cultures into a giant mess too?

  • GMcG @ at 7:19 pm, November 9th, 2010

    The biggest American problem is right here in this article. You have generalised massively with this piece. Every American benefits from cheap clothes, chocolate and oil – blacks, Hispanic, white, Chinese, the lot. there’s lots of poor white people too. And of course it’s okay to appropriate other cultures – that’s what diversity is.

    You seem to feel entitled to lump everyone into those who are not like you and therefore a massive, selfish problem.

  • Emily S. @ at 11:29 pm, November 9th, 2010

    Straight men who feel entitled to get more than a civil response from you because they told you they have a “thing” for your hair/eyes/whatever.

    Alternatively, straight men who feel entitled to carry on a conversation with you despite your protestations otherwise because… well, I don’t know why they think they have that right.

    And, of course, the guys who feel entitled to see you “Smile, baby!”

  • Emily S. @ at 11:33 pm, November 9th, 2010

    Christians (or anyone, but mostly Christians) who feel entitled to have their religion respected as the one true belief system although they will still mock other belief systems.

    Upper- and middle-class people who feel entitled to dictate where their tax money goes (sorry, you’re only entitled to VOTE on where it goes).

    Women who feel entitled to touch other women’s pregnant bellies.

    People who feel entitled to dictate how others dress – ie, banning burqas and niqabs.

  • Tanya @ at 6:59 pm, December 5th, 2010

    @ Miriam

    You are so clearly privileged you cannot even read this list, reflect on it, and realize that if you honestly don’t do any of these things, then this list is not about YOU. Not everything is about YOU. If it doesn’t apply to you after really thinking about it, then it’s not about you.

    Also hahahahahaha @ “here is no “Whiteness” system.” Someone hasn’t read the basics of White Privilege 101. sascwr.org/resources/pdfs/anti…/WHITE%20PRIVILEGE.pdf
    Start there, and if it makes you uncomfortable, that’s a good thing. It means you’re thinking and not just rejecting anything that offends you.

    This post was awesome.

  • Tanya @ at 7:27 pm, December 5th, 2010

    Also, wow, looking through your blog and the posts you tagged with “racism” are all things that either a)deny racism happens (which is cute as you are white, and therefore have not experienced racism) or b) that something sexist wasn’t given as much attention in your school paper. Are you 14 or something?

  • Samuel W. @ at 11:44 am, December 12th, 2010

    The way I see it, the stuck-up white straight male with a load mouth is entitled to keep your opinions to himself. You can’t say the ‘N’ word to me and expect me to respect you or your opinion, because racism is the stupidest mentality on earth. I leave at that for sanity’s sake.

  • Miriam @ at 12:34 pm, December 28th, 2010

    Actually, Tanya, you would be surprised to learn that as a Jewish Israeli, I’ve encountered quite a bit of prejudice. It’s “cute” of you to assume that just because my skin color is white, I’ve never been discriminated against based on my origins or ethnicity.

    Furthermore, I’ve never denied that racism exists. I only point out that it goes both ways, as several other commenters here have mentioned.

    Also, I’m 19. There’s no need to resort to personal insults to make your point.

  • Jenn @ at 7:36 pm, December 31st, 2010

    What a massive waste to read. + what Miriam said.

  • David @ at 8:36 pm, January 28th, 2011

    I assume I’m kicked off the site. It’s all so silly.

  • Amanda @ at 9:50 pm, March 26th, 2011

    Why don’t we get rid of this entitlement: AFFIRMATIVE ACTION

    People should not be put above one another because of their race or gender. For true equality everyone should have the same opportunity, not the same result. Those most qualified should get the job, the scholarship, or the spot in the college class; not the one that promotes diversity the most. I am a white, teenage, female, and I think that at this time in history those who are different by race, gender, or sexual orientation are not being treated equally, they are being treated as better, and that is not fair to those who work harder and prove themselves to be a greater contribution to society.

  • Matt SS @ at 1:29 pm, June 18th, 2011

    I know im late but, girls feel entitled to touch my hair all the time, and even more so my twin brothers because he has super long hair. I kid you not, some times a dozen black girls a day come up to him and squeal, yes, actually squeal and touch it without asking or beg to do it. And almost every day in my 90% black high school black girls smack me on the ass and black guys call me pretty white boy and all sorts of predatory racist and sexist behavior goes on. See, any majority does the same things the white majority. So yes, in predominantly white social situations white people often do things which are powerist, based on race, gender, religion, and other minority attributes.
    Btw, OP, unless you buy only clothes made in America by minimum wage or higher paid workers, and food that is the same, and computers, like the one you used to write this blog, and any other product ever, and you are aware of the provenance of every atom of any object you own, as you expect white people to be, you may want to consider that YOU, a brown person, are the perpetrator of dozens of acts of oppression, since you know, buying food is an act of oppression according to you. This is wealth privilege, not white privilege. And you, the super privilege obsessed female blogger, are wealthy. You live in America. You have power, computers, running water, relatively clean air, and dozens of other privileges associated with being American, or western democratic, if we are being inclusive. As an American, you have access to over 400000$ of intangible wealth, you filthy rich capitalist pig. Maybe you are the one who needs to check your privilege.

  • Queen @ at 9:13 am, February 23rd, 2012

    I feel that everyone is entitled to their opinion and that is just what it is. Yes, we live in a capitalist and racist country. However, not every Caucasian is racist. I am mixed with Indian and black and proud of it. My great great grandfather was Caucasian, so what would you say to that. The black race has been tampered with especially the black women in slavery by Caucasian slave masters and so has other cultures. America is supposed to be a place for freedom, justice and equality. There is no justice, equality or freedom. It is justice for some, equality for some and freedom for some. Lets not be found ignorant to what is going on in this society. Yes, there are better things to be talking about such as how to save hungry and homeless children or putting programs in place to help people who wants to attend college that can’t afford to pay tuition or saving energy just to name a few. Sometimes we wrap our minds around foolishness or things we don’t have control over, but you have control over yourself. Self improvement should be a priority in our lives. Thirty-five percent of most people problems is worrying about things that has nothing to do with them. The question is what can you do to better the world? Peace

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