Leveraging White Privilege To Help People Of Color
Natasha Marin would like white people to know that because of the color of their skin, they have an inherent advantage, or privilege.
“Privilege is complicated," says Marin. "A lot of people hear the word 'privilege' and they think about luxury. Privilege is not about luxury. Especially in terms of white privilege, it’s about benefits and boosts that society affords to you because of your appearance.”
Marin is an African-American woman. She lives in Seattle. She’s a writer and a visual artist. She noticed that with all of the horrible news having to do with police brutality, that her friends — white, black and everyone in between — felt kind of stuck.
They wanted to do something to recognize these things are happening, that they’ve been happening forever. But, where do you even begin?
Natasha, saw a void and created sort of a solution. It’s a website called Reparations.
“Reparations in the classical sense is about making amends, fixing something broken, healing something wounded, a reconnection where a disconnection has occurred.” says Marin.
According to Marin, the website is about making connections across racial boundaries.
“If you decide to participate in this social experiment called Reparations, you can make an offering or make a request," she explains. "Offerings are made by both people of color and people who identify as white and requests are made by people of color. It’s anything from 'I will help you with child care or a ride to the airport,' to 'I would like help getting a refrigerator or fixing my car.'”
Marin says she is not out to make white people feel guilty. She wants them recognize they have power, and she wants them to use it. She says Reparations is a life hack. She believes that if you help somebody else, not only will their day be better, but so will yours.
This segment originally aired September 3, 2016