#InequalityIs: Gara LaMarche on inequality and privilege

#InequalityIs: Gara LaMarche on inequality and privilege


You know, I’ve thought
about this question lately a lot about you know,
the “Angry White Man”. And I woke up
one morning and I realized: I’m an angry old white man. What am I angry about? I’m angry about
different things. Inequality creates structures of power in which a relatively small
number of people determine the future
of great social questions. And we can’t afford that. I’ve enjoyed, by virtue of my
gender and skin color, a degree of privilege
in this society that has gotten me advantages
that are ill-gained. I was born in 1954, which was the year of
Brown vs. Board of Education which was the
Supreme Court decision that finally began to undo the legacy of racism that
this country was built on. Most women were not
in the workplace, they didn’t have control over
their reproductive destiny. I was in high school
when Stonewall happened, the great Civil Rights Acts
of ’64, ’65, the Voting Rights Act, the Immigration Act of 1965 that ended racist
immigration quotas, Medicare and the
Great Society programs. That’s what makes me
angry right now; people of my
kind of age and gender and skin color who want to go back to a world before the changes
that I’m talking about. The liberation of
talent and energy that comes from
the reduction of inequality and the reduction of bigotry that enables women
and people of color and immigrants to compete on the same footing as white men who have
traditionally held power, has liberated in every zone
of life you want to look at whether it’s finance, or the non-profit world, or politics, or higher education, or arts and culture, has liberated enormous
amounts of energies that were bottled up before. If we’re to solve all
the problems of the world, we need to have everybody able and willing to
step up to those challenges no matter what their background and no matter where they live.

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