White privilege is the right of whites, and only whites, to be judged as individuals, to be treated as a unique self, possessed of all the rights and protections of citizenship. I am not a race, I am the unmarked subject. I am simply man, whereas you might be a black man, an asian woman, a disabled native man, a homosexual latina woman, and on and on the qualifiers of identification go. With each keyword added, so too does the burden of representation grow.
Sometimes the burden of representation is proudly shouldered, even celebrated. But more often this burden of representation becomes a dangerous, racist weight, crushing and unbearable. Michael Brown was killed in part because of this burden (the stereotype of black male criminality), and his body continues to carry this weight as the protests mount (the martyred symbol that black lives matter).
But white men are just people. Basic Humanity. We carry the absent mark which grants us the invisible power of white privilege. Everyone else gets discrimination.
Then he drills in on the very specific definition of the term:
If we think of the douchebag as a social identity as much as an accusation, as a subject with a distinctive persona locatable within the categories of race, class, gender and sexuality, then we find that the term carries a remarkably precise definition.
The douchebag is someone — overwhelmingly white, rich, heterosexual males — who insist upon, nay, demand their white male privilege in every possible set and setting.
The douchebag is equally douchy (that’s the adjectival version of the term) in public as in private. He is a douchebag waiting in line for coffee as well as in the bedroom. This definition marks him, like the atavistic, dusty rubber douchebags of our grandmothers’ generation, as a useless, sexist tool. Armed with this refined definition, I believe the term “douchebag” is the white racial slur we have all been waiting for. We have only to realize this. White privilege itself has blinded us to the true nature of the douchebag’s identity. But it’s been there all along.
It's most certainly a term I hear used more and more these days, though I'm not sure what precipitated its ascent. As Cohen notes, it was once a medical term, but at some point it was appropriated to mean, according to the first definition in its Urban Dictionary entry, “Someone who has surpassed the levels of jerk and asshole, however not yet reached fucker or motherfucker. Not to be confuzed [sic] with douche.”
I ran a Google Ngram on the term from 1880 to 2008, and you can see its popularity take flight in the aughts.