Royce Mann decided to enter his school slam poetry competition when he felt he had something to say.


The 14-year-old took to the floor with a piece called “White Boy Privilege”, and what happened in the minutes following was something truly inspiring.


Royce began his piece by apologising to women, black people, immigrants and everyone who isn’t middle or upper-class and white.


The hard-hitting, emotional and brave speech tackled issues like race, inequality, sexism, and class structure in America.


“I have started life at the top of a ladder while you were born on the first rung," he eloquently said. 


“I say now that I would change places with you in an instant but if given the opportunity, would I?”



Royce went on to speak about how privilege allowed him to live a life without “trying to meet other people’s standards”.


He acknowledges the fact that because he is a “privileged white boy” he has not had to face some of the injustice and inequality that others have.


The eight-grader refers to his “safety blanket” that shields him and many others.


“Being 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 even liked it that way.


“I’m just saying that I f**king love being privileged and I’m not ready to give that away.”


His mum, Sheri Mann Stewart, uploaded the video to YouTube on June 27th, a week before the recent shootings in America.


Finishing his powerful speech, Royce ends with this inspiring demand:


“It’s time to take that ladder and turn it into a bridge.”             


Royce won the poetry slam.



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