When I read about how Aunt Becky from Full House was implicated in a admissions cheating scam, I immediately wondered why on earth a person of means couldn’t just pay for their kid to attend college. Then I read this story about the scam and became hip to the game. This entire story and scam is indicative of white privilege.

If I had a dollar for every time an underachieving white man has complained about affirmative action resulting in a black person or POC “taking” their “spot” or one of their underachieving friends’ “spot” in college, I could fund the remainder of my Master’s degree and a PhD program.

I have sat in classes where white folks have called the presence of black people on campus into question and acted as if I didn’t deserve to be there, but rich white kids get a pass because they can pay.

Meanwhile, Kamilah Campbell had her SAT scores flagged because they jumped up too high and was suspected of cheating. Campbell says that she didn’t cheat and that she had been working with a tutor, taking online classes, and studying from the Princeton SAT prep book. It’s funny that one black teenager in Florida was instantly flagged for cheating and her future in jeopardy before it even starts, but it took a whole investigation by the FBI to bring down Aunt Becky and others.

White Affirmative Action

First of all, how terrible do your grades and test scores have to be for someone to have to run an entire scam to get you into a school that your family has the resources to pay for outright? USC is $50K per year…Aunt Becky paid 10 times that on this cheating scam.

Please hear me, I’m not shaming these children for their poor grades and test scores but I am coming after the entitlement that these folks have and the inconsistency in our culture that shames black athletes for going to college for free because they can play ball. Black athletes bring prestige, interest, and money to these schools. What are these white kids coming in on fake crew, lacrosse, and hockey scholarships doing besides being rich? People view black athletes as illegitimate members of the university community, but nobody questions how any of the white kids got on campus.

Secondly, this is another piece in the mountain of evidence that our racist culture pits poor white folks against minorities. This scam is affirmative action for rich white people. Certain sports and their accompanying scholarships are affirmative action for rich white people. Legacy admissions are affirmative action for rich white people. About a half dozen other things are affirmative action for rich white people.

But people will still get in their feelings about affirmative action because white folks don’t want to see that it’s white women benefiting from it the most…and the white women getting affirmative action admissions aren’t from families who could have paid or scammed their way into the school…

Proving Value

Finally, this scam shows us once again that whiteness and money not only talk, but they also create realities and worlds that those of us without these things can only dream of. Imagine being so wealthy that you don’t have to be good at nothing except being attractive and nobody thinks twice about you being at an elite institution because they assume that you belong there. You don’t have to prove your intelligence, because people assume that if you’re dumb, you still belong because you can afford to pay.

Meanwhile, black and brown students who are hardworking and intelligent have to constantly prove their value and convince people they belong at higher education institutions. They have to prove that their presence isn’t some grand miscarriage of justice in which a white man had to sacrifice his future for them to be there.

I don’t want to hear another word about affirmative action and people not getting into college because a minority took their “spot” ever again. It wasn’t some black kid that kept Brent or his buddy Chad out of college; it was some rich kid with ACT/SAT coaches, tutors, and/or a rich Aunt Becky.

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