After a guilt-ridden 14-year-old white boy from Atlanta, Georgia, Royce Mann, got up in front of his classmates and bemoaned his “white privilege,” during a class “poetry slam” session in a video that has gone viral, Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro issued a harsh take-down on his podcast, now the #1 conservative podcast in the country, according to ITunes.
Mann started by moaning, “Dear women, I’m sorry. Dear black people, I’m sorry. Dear Asian-Americans, dear Native Americans, dear immigrants who come here seeking a better life, I’m sorry. Dear everyone who isn’t a middle or upper class white boy, I’m sorry. I have started life on the top of the ladder while you were born on the first rung.”
Then, after acknowledging his own guilt, he continued, “I say now that I would change places with you in an instant, but if given the opportunity, would I? Probably not. Because to be privileged is awesome. I’m not saying that you and me on different rungs of the ladder is how I want it to stay. I’m not saying that any part of me has for a moment even liked it that way. I’m just saying that I’m fuckin’ privileged and I’m not willing to give that away. I love it because I can say ‘fuckin’ and not one of you is attributing that to the fact that everyone with my skin color has a dirty mouth. I love it because I don’t have to spend an hour every morning putting on makeup to meet other people’s standards.”
Of course, Mann had to do the requisite charge that the police are racist: “I love it because when I see a police officer I see someone who is on my side. To be honest I’m scared of what it would be like if I wasn’t on the top rung if the tables were turned and I didn’t have my white boy privilege safety blankie to protect me.”
An all-embracing attack including charges of class warfare, racism and hatred of the LGBT community followed: “It is embarrassing that we still live in a world in which we judge another person’s character because of the size of their paycheck, the color of their skin, or the type of chromosomes they have … most of all, it is embarrassing that we deny this. That we claim to live in an equal country, an equal world.”
Then a disingenuous and patronizing attack to show how superior he is to other white boys: “Dear white boys: I’m not sorry. I don’t care if you think that the feminists are taking over the world, that the Black Lives Matter movement has gotten a little too strong, because that’s bullshit. I get that change can be scary, but equality shouldn’t be. Hey white boys: it’s time to act like a woman. To be strong and make a difference. It’s time to let go of that fear.It’s time to take that ladder and turn it into a bridge.”
Shapiro slammed Mann harshly:
Let me explain something to you, stupid 14-year old child. Everyone in life–everyone–is born in a different circumstance. All the people are born in different circumstances. Yes, some of those are better, yes, some of those are worse, but if you don’t have equal rules that apply to everyone … it matters where you end up in life and what direction you’re going, not where you started. If you think that where you started is where you end up, then you’re living in a tyranny. If you think that where you started should not determine where you end up, then you’re in favor of freedom and you should get out of the way, instead of just wandering around talking about how lack of privilege is an unalterable burden that you can’t overcome, that you’re just stuck. If you’re born without privilege, then you’re just stuck.
Of course people are born with different privileges: they’re born with two parents instead of just one parent; they’re born rich instead of poor; they’re born smart instead of stupid. This happens. This doesn’t mean that the solution to that is to simply apologize for your privilege and then suggest that privilege is unalterable and you’re stuck where you are.
The video of Mann’s mea culpa is below:
And here is Shapiro’s complete response, starting at 47:14: