A lot of the discussion I have seen on privilege, including some of this discussion, seems to proceed from a faulty understanding of the term itself: that “privilege” is a shorthand way of saying “who has it better”.
In that context, it makes perfect sense for people to argue that while certainly men have advantages in certain specifiable ways, women also have advantages in other specifiable (often complementary) ways, and so therefore this whole “privilege” thing is just a fancy term for a set of scales, where you can finely dice and measure all the various ways in which this group or that group has it better.
Like many things which are real, privilege cannot be directly measured, but its presence and nature can be imperfectly inferred from the ways it acts on other things. If you could take two essentially identical human beings, different only in the unearned characteristic you are comparing, and drop them into the same circumstance, the difference in outcome would be a perfect manifestation of privilege. Practically, this is difficult, but it has been done to a limited extent.
Lists of examples of privilege are very useful, but this is their Achilles’ heel. When you try to describe privilege abstractly, people quite reasonably say, “Can you give some examples?” So we come up with examples. But put enough examples together and to some people with privilege it starts to read like an indictment. (And for some people, “enough” is “one or two”.) They get defensive, and they start to say, “Well, but that’s not fair” and to think of ways to redress the balance… and miss the point entirely.
Yeah, that’s true. It’s not fair. That’s inherent in the nature of privilege. Like the closet, privilege hurts everyone involved; it just gives bigger helpings of hurt to the people with less of it.