Team Light skinned by Kai Davis, Hiwot Adilow and Telia Allmond
What is Light Skin Privilege? (USA)
While many of my light skin brethren want to fight side by side with out darker counterparts, we often over look our own privilege. Many, even denying that there is any privilege at all. Just as white people don’t often see their privilege, light skin people don’t always see ours. Conversations about light skin privilege often end with light skinned people talking about how they don’t have “white” privilege.
Well, you’re right. We don’t. We are in the same boat as our darker family members when it comes to that particular point. Yet, conveniently, we forget that while we will get a longer sentence than a white person for committing the same crime. We will get less of a sentence than someone who is darker.
While, we are less likely to get a job based on the color of our skin than white people, we are more likely than our darker counter parts to not only get the job but to get paid more money. Especially, if that job puts us in front of customers or has us be the “face” of the company.
Lighter skin is also seen as more desirable. The white washing of historical characters means that if the historical figure is dark skinned, they will very likely be played by a light skinned actor/actress in a movie or on TV.
Our denial of light skin privilege is no different than a white person denying that they have white privilege. It’s ugly, it’s factually incorrect and it hurts the very people who are already hurting the most. It’s not okay to deny our privilege. Not ever.