‘Wokeness’ was created in the United States, then swiftly exported to the rest of the Western world. In Ireland, a country with close ancestral ties to the U.S., ‘wokeness’ now reigns supreme. In fact, it’s safe to say that Ireland is the official ‘woke’ capital of Europe.
If you doubt this, let me point you in the direction of the country’s new draft curriculum for 15- to 18-year-olds. As first reported by Gript, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA), the Irish education ministry’s advisory council, has recommended the introduction of classes that center around white privilege, male privilege, gender identity, and sexual diversity.
Not only will Irish students be expected to learn about the “socially and culturally constructed” aspects of gender, they will also learn about the importance of “sexual diversity” and the “additional gender identities and sexual orientations that are not specifically covered by the five initials” (i.e. LGBTQ). Moreover, teenagers will be expected to develop “allyship skills,” and acquaint themselves with the “actions, behaviors, and practices used to support, advocate, and collaborate with others, in support of justice and equity.” In plain English, they will be expected to develop the “skills” needed to push ‘LGBT friendly’ narratives.
If that’s not enough, students will also learn how to recognize one’s supposedly “privileged status.” The draft specifically identifies being white and being male as two prime examples of privileged status. If you happen to be a white male, and happen to live in Ireland, you have hit the jackpot; in reality, though, you haven’t.
The idea of ‘white privilege,’ intimately associated with the U.S., argues against a race-free worldview. According to proponents of ‘white privilege,’ whites in the U.S. and beyond are regularly afforded opportunities and benefits that are unavailable to other members of society. Sixty years ago, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was fighting to advance the rights of black Americans, such arguments were entirely valid. However, in 2023, any suggestion that white people are afforded special privileges that black people are not should be met with a great deal of resistance. This is especially true in Ireland, where many non-whites are offered free housing and substantial weekly allowances. The Irish government is extremely generous to refugees—not necessarily to Irish citizens though (the vast majority of whom happen to be white).
As is clear to see, the idea of ‘white privilege’ is built on a foundation of low-grade sand. It intentionally ignores other important—arguably far more important—variables besides skin color, such as employment, income, education level, and whether or not an individual happens to be a homeowner. What good is it being white if you happen to be homeless? In Ireland, thousands of people, many of whom have light skin pigmentation, are living on the streets, begging for food and shelter.
Similarly, the idea of ‘male privilege’ is a nefarious concept entirely detached from reality. To understand why, we must revisit the U.S., the birthplace of the slippery proposition. Today, across America, boys are far less likely to graduate from high-school than girls. This means they are far less likely to attend university: 66% of all college students in the U.S. are female. Not only do women now occupy two-thirds of all college administrator positions in the U.S., six of eight Ivy League schools will soon have female presidents.
America also has a sizable justice gap. American males are 75% more likely than females to receive a long prison sentence; furthermore, they’re over three times more likely to serve that sentence. Rather alarmingly, even when men and women commit the exact same crimes, males receive sentences that are 63% higher than females. How’s that for privilege?
The idea that men, be they white or otherwise, have access to special advantages and specific privileges unavailable to women is not designed to appeal to logic; it is designed to appeal to emotion. For many, it feels right, even if it happens to be objectively untrue.
This Made in America untruth has invaded Ireland, where an increasing number of young men are taking their own lives. In fact, as I have shown elsewhere, suicide is now the biggest killer of Irish men under the age of 25. The average Irish male, who just so happens to be white, is far from privileged. As a white man who grew up on a small farm in the west of Ireland, I write this not from a place of privilege, but from a place of hard work and plenty of sacrifice. My father is not privileged, nor is my younger brother. They never were, and they never will be, even if the Irish government would have us believe otherwise. To call the average Irish man privileged is disrespectful.
When America sneezes, the world catches a cold. Ireland, it seems, is now paralyzed by an involuntary expulsion of ‘woke’ air that managed to travel 4,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean.