Many have noted “Who says life is fair, where is that written?” When our children are taught hard knock life rule son the playground we often remind them that life is not fair. Indeed it is written everywhere that life is not fair. Ok. I can accept that when I do my best to catch an early train and because of a highway pile up I cannot make that train. I get that level of unfairness. In those instances you make the best of the moment and step up to whatever needs to be done. However, just because life is unfair, it does not mean that we can or should have structural systems that bathe in inequality. We can do better. Can’t we?
We can ask for equal wages between men and women. We can ask for healthcare access for all. We can ask for better produce and more playgrounds in our neighborhoods. We could ask for universal “Headstart”- of course, the name will then become obsolete in a way. Ask a matter a fact we should not only ask for but we should demand and scream for equality. A level playing field. Of course, different people have different aptitudes. We should let people rise to their potential And that folks…is just it –let people rise to their potential. We should remove barriers that allow for that ascension.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. noted:
“It’s all right to tell a man to lift himself by his own bootstraps, but it is cruel jest to say to a bootless man that he ought to lift himself by his own bootstraps.”
Having grown up dirt poor in the South Bronx, I got a chance to rise above the build in barriers to that ascension. So did many of my childhood friends. Yet many remain mired in deep systems of inequality while holding onto dreams of better days.
Through hope, resilience, partnerships and dreams are often how battles of inequality are won.
Today is the 289th day of the year with 76 days remaining. It is also World Food day. Pay a helping hand forward.