I recently updated my “10 Pillars of Life” to include: “Everyone should have the opportunity to live up to their full potential”. That is what this post is all about. When I say everyone, I mean everyone, regardless of their financial, social, or health situation or even their country of residence.
Of course, affluent people have the right to give their kids almost everything to try to make them successful, but they also should bear some responsibility of helping to make sure that those who don’t have rich parents also get an opportunity to be successful. No, that doesn’t mean everyone should go to Harvard, but it does mean that everyone should have the opportunities to go as far as their natural abilities can take them. At the very least community college should be available to anyone who has the desire and ability to attend.
I believe the most fundamental thing that causes lazy minds and prevents equal opportunity is the lack of education. The second most fundamental thing is ingrained prejudice. Our country was founded with one of those prejudice firmly in its foundation. It took us almost a hundred years to strike that from our constitution, and since that time it has taken us 160 years to really begin to drive that prejudice out of our institutions and psyche. That is still a “work in progress” but it is finally beginning to happen at a pace that can maybe foresee its eventual demise.
America was once the shining light on the hill when it came to education. We were among the first to provide at least a minimal level of education to all our children. Unfortunately, we have yet to carry that legacy forward beyond that now basic level. Higher education is expensive, but it is nothing compared to the cost of ignorance, and we seem to be seeing evidence of that in spades lately.
I have called this ignorance lazy minds, but I kinda think I have been painting with too broad a brush with that categorization. I think a lot of it has to do with missing opportunities to grow our intelligence. I realize that these goals can’t be accomplished quickly, but the sooner we start the sooner it will happen.
How do we accomplish universal education? I think we should institute a significant tax on the wealthy to be used exclusively for providing educational opportunities for everyone.