Sylvia Orza Pardo was Mexican, a woman of color. Maybe she was even an “illegal,” the malevolent thinking goes. She was probably a gold digger who married Bruce Pardo for his money and was taking him for all she could get. Why, she should have been grateful that someone like Pardo — such a paragon of white, male, heterosupremacist, middle class virtue — married her in the first place. That’s sure what Bruce Pardo was counting on, as abusers always will, that his, in his own mind, magnanimity and generosity in marrying Sylvia Orza would make her easy prey, easy to hurt, easy to use and abuse without anyone suspecting or criticizing him for it. And he was right. In his death, he is still enjoying white middle class male immunity, that particular immunity from criticism and harsh judgment that is the province of men like him, that shields them from accountability for rape, murder, battering, domestic violence and every form of abuse.
The impunity with which white, middle class or rich heterosexual men may batter, abuse and kill their female partners and others is central to the perpetuation of white male heterosupremacy. It isn’t a fluke that people are excusing Pardo or justifying what he did or blaming his ex-wife for it. It isn’t some anomaly. This is, in fact, what white male privilege IS. This is white male heterosupremacist privilege on parade. This is what it MEANS. No group of men on earth is so immune from the consequences of femicide and abuse as this group of men is, and the privilege they enjoy expresses itself and works itself out every single day, not just in horrific events like these murders, but in a million ways, small and large, in the interactions between white men and white women, white men and men and women of color, white men and children, white men and animals, interactions which, in the end, are, again, the heart and soul of white male heterosupremacy.
Remember those “It’s so strange and Christmas themed that someone murdered people in a Santa suit” articles? Yeah.