Democratic presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand said she owes her career, at least in part, to her white skin color and her “whiteness.”
The 2020 hopeful told a group of progressive Netroots Nation conference attendees she assailed to the United States Senate and found success throughout her political career thanks to the “enormous amounts of white privilege” she received, Breitbart reports.
Here’s more from the report:
“A community has been left behind for generations because of the color of their skin,” Gillibrand stated to the small crowd of supporters. “Institutional racism is real.”
Gillibrand went on to discuss what she believed to be institutional racism against black mothers during child birth, claiming that they are less likely to live through a complicated childbirth than white women.
Speaking to Daily Mail afterwards, Gillibrand expounded on the remarks she made at the forum.
“There is a deference that is given to whiteness in society today. And, you see it all the time,” Gillibrand told Daily Mail.
Gillibrand said she notices differences in how she and how one of her Black staffers are treated in various places.
“I travel with a woman who’s black, I watch how she’s treated when we walk into a hotel room, into a hotel to check in. I watch how she’s treated in a restaurant. I watch how whether the person who’s taking her order listens to her order and gets it right,” Gillibrand explained. “I’ve sat with black Americans, and they’re literally not listened to.”
According to the Daily Mail, Gillibrand “absolutely” benefits being a white woman.
“I don’t think you can overstate the reality of institutional racism in society today,” the New York senator said. “I really don’t think you can overstate it. It is so prevalent. It is in healthcare, it is in education, it’s in the economy, it’s in the criminal justice system.”
“I am certain I have been. I’m certain of it,” Gillibrand continued. “I think you know disproportionately that black and brown people have less economic opportunity. Just look at the pay gap.”
Adding, “The fact that white women earn more than black women, earn more than Latinas. It’s in the pay that I receive, so the truth is yes, I have benefited because of my whiteness, and that’s just a fact.”