Who will do better later in life?

Case 1

Thelonius, a child of two mixed-race parents, but who identifies as black, comes home from Amherst College for break.

Thelonius: Dad, I think I might be failing history: the teacher (who is a white male, and probably heterosexual as well!) keeps trying to push us to read all of these dead white guys. It's white privilege!

Dexter: (Thelonius's dad, a public school diversity administrator): Son, yup, that is indeed white privilege in action! You get out there and lead some campus protests, and I'm sure you can get the situation changed.

Case 2

Emmanuel, the child of two Nigerian immigrant parents, comes home from Texas Tech University for break.

Emmanuel: Dad, I think I might be failing Calculus III: the teacher, a white male, keeps talking about all of the theorems of these dead white guys. It's white privilege!

Olawale (Emmanuel's dad, who works a day shift at a chip fabrication plant in Houston, and then drives a cab at night): Son, you come home talking to me about this "white privilege" again, and I will show you my "father's privilege": I will stop paying your damned tuition, and you will go and get your own damned apartment and find a way to pay your own damned rent. Now, get busy studying and finish your engineering degree! Here, let me open your damned calculus book for you and watch you study for a couple of hours!


Median household income
Nigerian-American $61,000
Native-born African-American    $38,000


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