21 August 2008

Dumb Looks Still Free: Diversity?

This post started off as a series of random thoughts after reading Jeff Goldstein's post on Diversity at Protein Wisdom

Humans are a diverse lot within our species - we come in a myriad of hues, outlooks and personal views on things.  Some of these things arise from 'culture' but that cannot explain such things as 'personality' and 'attitude'.  In fact humans are allergic to actually defining and quantifying those latter, and we get some dreadfully inhuman feeling that trying to actually define something like, say, extroversion so as to factor it in to our views of self and society, and then put a means to measure it that is verifiable and quantifiable is just... well... dehumanizing.  Sort of like taking your blood pressure and factoring it in to your lifestyle so you can adjust various factors and not keel over dead due to complications from it.  Or not, as the case may be.

What?  You get your blood pressure measured?  Pretty damned unnatural, that, wanting to know what it is your body is doing in a general way - why not ignore it and just keel over when various factors finally make your system go down?  You know, just die naturally as your body intends it to?

You want to LIVE LONGER?  Damned unnatural, that.

Unless you like living, of course, then actually putting a peg on your blood pressure and other bodily functions so as to understand how they interwork and why is of importance.  While your genetic heritage will play a large part in your demise, your own actions will be a determining factor that is, actually, under your control.  As a person in a body that has multiple and diverse functions, you want to understand those functions and how they interact so as to take precautions and preventative measures in case your genetic material has some innate failings.  At that point you are working to adjust the actual function of that sub-system (be it organ or interaction of biochemicals system-wide) so as to ensure that the system continues to function well and within boundaries that are 'normal' to you as an individual.

Now that genetic heritage imparts many things to you: tendencies towards certain disorders based on ethnic heritage, similar based on familial lineage, an admixture of genes from two parents that may have recessive genes for a disorder that become dominant when taken together, and a whole host of other things, such as body morph type of your parent's background modified by that new gene suite that is yours.  Even with all conceptions being equal, and being born equal, that genetic suite will play a large role in determining how you live and how long you live.  And it has a large part to play in personality, attitude and the internal traits that will show up to you, as an individual, as you develop in your life.  That combined suite and interaction makes you something unique within the species and within the history of life:  an individual.

Just like a snowflake.

Walk up to a glacier and see the snowflakes!


The properties of the water molecule and how it nucleates so as to freeze and form a crystal is based on many things, but when they are taken cumulatively they then start to form something different.  Get lots of snow and keep on adding more and reduce melt-off for a few centuries and you start to see that the oldest flakes are changing under pressure and beginning to turn into ice.  They still retain much of their background from their formation, but their individual structures have coalesced into a mass structure.  Once that is done and pressure mounts the ice begins to act as a slow moving, viscous fluid and heads downhill.  That earliest mass of individuals, now forgotten, have formed something different and created a new thing that depends on the contribution of all intervening layers from the topmost, individual flakes, to those layers of flakes getting compressed into ice to the bottom most melting under pressure and friction to allow movement of the whole mass.

When applied to human society, those historical contributions are called 'culture'.

Taken as a whole they become a new thing called 'society'.

Your individual contribution in the living stance is important: you are standing atop a vast, deep structure formed by hundreds of generations of human culture coming to coalesce into societies that are based on those cultures.  Geography then plays a role that is determinative, just like with glaciers, and allow for there to be variation of glaciers based on position, time, changes in snowfall, changes in insolation, how much of the underlying surface is entrained, and the actual composition of the snow based layers that can alter the chemistry of the glacier once they become compressed.  While all snowflakes are created equal, all glaciers are different.  Some are in places with very little snow and no melting worth counting, and thus move slowly, others get wet, rich snowfall in the tens of feet per year and turn into fast moving glaciers (as these things go), and still others get stuck in areas that are lower than surrounding mountains and actually circle around and around, finding no outlet.

When society meets geography we begin to get these things called 'states'.  These 'states' have a composition based on ethnicity, personal outlook, history of those that came before, how culture developed and along what lines, and then what is being added to the top layers as time goes on.  That pressure at the bottom begins to lose all but the most important societal and cultural memories and uses the vast bulk to engender motion of that society.  All of that takes on characteristics that are particular to geographic circumstances, so that even people of identical ethnic background will wind up with two entirely different formulations of culture and society based on geography.

The structure of a glacier, like that of a state, in no way belittles the importance of the top most individuals who happen to be part of that structure: they are necessary to the structure's continuation.  As individuals living in states we come to prefer a regularized means of adapting our needs to the general society and culture, and form an organizational structure to help ensure that this is done to our needs as individuals who are members of that greater organization.  We call these things 'nations', and they are the regularized means of actually trying to make sure our human created affairs don't implode under social, cultural and individual pressures and that a way of life continues that is amenable not only to the present generation but to past practices and 'lessons learned' by our ancestors.

Just as there are structures within your body, as an individual, that allow for your continuation of life, so, too, are there structures in a glacier that allow it to continue on its way based on geography.  Nations also have organs within them and become the accumulation point of those things that, when utilized by individuals, is a negative or detriment to the overall structure we call society and states. 

As individuals living under the Law of Nature you have complete liberty.  And you have no one to stop you save, by the Law of Nature, others exercising THEIR complete liberty upon YOU.  Since we are all created equal or start out at the equal base-state with some genetic factors, it is then incumbent upon each of us to understand that this complete suite of liberty to the individual has a high cost overhead.  'Nature red of tooth and claw' means that you are dinner to someone or something else, none excepted from the lowliest virus to the greatest predator you can name, each has perfect and complete liberty based on their heritage and will succumb to complete liberty.

The foundation of culture is understanding that some of that liberty can be passed over to a group of our fellow beings in which we will act in unison: we create culture to reduce friction and bring ourselves together in common accord for our protection and restricted exercise of those liberties that are negative to our personal survival that would be the case without our grouping them together.  That group culture has member based limits, usually pegged at between 120 and 150 individuals, after which the intergroup problems cause sub-groups to splinter off.  To create something more than that requires a society of agreed-upon common understandings and the formation of some way to organize the policing of those standards.  That organizational structure concept may have started as early as 8,000 BC, but once invented it spread like wildfire and still remains with us to this day.

That internal working order and compliance system to reinforce the common agreements amongst ourselves in the larger than 150 member group comes by a name:  government.  We have handed government the negative means to enforce compliance of the individual with society, when individuals break that common agreement.  Government is no boon to mankind, but a necessary creation of humans so that we can live together in common agreement and accord.  That expanded structure over a geographic region that may encompass many similar societies that have a larger basis for agreement becomes a National Government to protect their common State.  No other structure yet devised can protect individuals from the full suite of liberty they are born with as well as governments.  By using the coercive bulwark of following the agreed-upon structures across the societies in a Nation, government then brings the members into compliance with that common agreement.

That is this thing called Diversity with common agreement for a mutual society.

Individuals may have problems with some of the sub-structures in that society, but so long as the outward manifestations of the common agreement are held upon in public and for the common good, trying to force each individual into any greater compliance becomes an authoritarian move to utilize some other vision of what the common agreement 'should be' rather than what it is.  What is forgotten is that the Nation, like a glacier, is guided not by the top but by the bottom and the geography it has: the intervening layers take a lot to change and there is usually a huge death toll in trying to change them.

Japan lost its centuries of Imperial Military culture during World War II: the glacier that was Japanese culture hit a chasm that the underlying structure fell into taking that leading edge along with it.  Some of the partially melted and solidified layers emerged on the other side while the old Imperial culture filled the chasm and was lost.  The death toll to do that was horrific by any measure.  Once bridged that new culture retained positive aspects that helped it along, and formed a new basis for movement at the bottom.

US society had a wedge of rock that divided it for its first decades and no one knew if the structure would be considered whole or not.  Was this going to turn into two separate valleys or was this a structure that would be ground down and away by the society?  Blood joined the two parts into a whole and while still fractured in that area, the mass continues onwards in a single valley.  We still have the inclusions in American society that shows up that older stand of rock that proved to be a separation but not a division, that due to the outcome of the Civil War.  That could have proven otherwise, but did not do so and because of the outcome of that conflict the US must be addressed by society.  The original agreement that formed the Nation included that separation and reconciling it was expected to be done in a civil fashion over years.  Instead that separation had kept to a feeling that the original papering over of how the Nation was formed was to be for all time.

The actual effort to remove that separation, demonstrate that all men are created equal and that by coming into this world and being born into should not place an individual into a separate bin according to race, class, or ethnic backgrounds took that bloodshed to finally establish and remove the underpinnings of the separation.  Grinding away at the inclusions, those artifacts brought into the overall culture and finally diminishing them and removing the worse of them is not an overnight affair and takes generations.  Citing differences in culture due to that separation belies the underlying structure of seeing each individual born into the world as free and having liberty.  That liberty is not 'cost free' to exercise in restraint: we give up the negative aspects of it to government so that we may exercise the positive aspects to be better individuals and create a world where the positive aspects of liberty overwhelm its negative aspects.  That is our job at the top of the glacier of the Nation called the United States that is composed of many and diverse people.

Where Jeff Goldstein goes, and I do concur, is that modern 'Diversity' views are not set up to help bring the positives of other societies into ours while removing the negative hold-overs.  The strange concept that you can come to ANY Nation and not want to be a part of its culture and, indeed, work to establish a separate culture within the Nation is not only divisive: it is lethal.  Coming to a Nation means agreeing to the social compact of that Nation which represents the state, society and cultures of that Nation.  To do that one must partake of love of that Nation for the things it represents via that culture, society, state and government. 

If one puts forward that the ever present proviso of 'but you should criticize it for things it does wrong' then you cannot absolve yourself from that exact, same criticism if your actions are an attempt to divide, not just separate, cultures within a Nation away from the common accord.  To the profound dismay of many, it is that second aspect of 'asking questions' that rises above the common accord to cause division and dissension by trying to establish cultural enclaves and communities that do not represent the agreement to have a Nation in common.  This does not mean that there are not cultural references to other cultures, that is profound and true of the common agreement in the United States, but it does point out that it is that act of finding something that is American that will underlie all of those who wish to consider themselves to be American.  That common understanding must come first, separate of other cultures, because the United States is attempting to make a unique culture unlike any other on this planet.

'Why can't we be like everyone else?'

Because we set out to be profoundly different FROM everyone else and show a way in which liberty could be held accountable and yet its positive aspects fully emphasized to create the greatest freedom for mankind that has ever been witnessed in history.  By inserting a hyphen and creating the -American, you are creating a negative sign in the equation that puts other culture, ethnicity and 'diversity' FIRST and then subtracts American from it.  That is one of the most insidious of mental cues that can be done to a Nation as it demeans and belittles that National experience of culture, society and state and then purports that the part subtracted, after taking America away, still leaves good things that are not taken into the culture as a whole.

If they are so good, then why aren't they put forth in a way that is acceptable to EVERYONE so that we may share in that common good?  What happens is that the 'diversity' is then enhanced to try and make individuals feel SPECIAL because of that ethnic heritage, emphasize that ethnic heritage and cause divisiveness in a land where everyone is born EQUAL.  If one can subtract the American part of the hyphenated Americans and still be left with good things, then someone is not sharing their cultural wealth with the whole of the Nation and is no longer agreeing to that common cultural compact to create a NEW culture that emphasizes accountable liberty for the greatest possible positive freedom.  And the judge of the actual, positive value of those things brought in is NOT the individual, but the acceptance or lack of same of those cultural artifacts by the greater society as a whole.  That is how the good gets winnowed from the bad, and no matter how good this or that cultural trait may seem to those who practice it, they are not the final arbiters for the entirety of acceptance by society.

One area where America demonstrates tolerance is in the upkeeping of the Peace of Westphalia which established different realms for the spiritual realm of religion and the secular realm of the state.  That cultural artifact pre-dates the United States by over a century, and yet is seen as a primary inclusion into the Nation as it affords toleration of religion that does not seek to upend the common society as a whole.  That was included not only because of the obligations placed upon us by Westphalia via lineage, but also due to the wisdom of keeping religion out of the secular common good so that it would not divide peoples along those lines.  Those rallying to the fact that the founders were 'Christians' ignore that they were being 'Good Christians' and upholding the Peace of Westphalia so that the differences in Christianity would not divide the new Nation.  The most ardent supporters of that were priests and the clergy of many sects already in America as part of separate states that would form the Nation of the United States.

As that comes to pass we also tolerate a wide 'diversity' of religions, so long as they do not seek secular power to differentiate between men based upon religion.  We give high honor to those Good Christians who formed this Nation because, on the religious side, they had vehement and deep disagreements with each other and yet agreed not to let that bigotry stop them from creating a Nation that would respect all religions.  That did not stop their personal bigotry towards other religious outlooks, but it limited it to the private sphere of discourse because that is a POSITIVE liberty: discussion in society over issues of a profound moral character.  Government is restricted from that area as it cannot seek its guidance from any single source, but from the entirety of the experience of the people as represented in their majority and minority.  Neither minority or majority are allowed to dictate to society: majority rules, but minority circumscribes those things that would negatively impact the greater Nation as a whole.  In the realm of religion that actually has voice in the most personal religion possible, which is that practiced by a sole believer.

Arguments and ideas pulled from the realm of the spiritual then must face the test of the secular in being agreeable to the majority, not infringe on the minority and respect the rights of the individuals of society.  Religion can and does have a place in the public square as a source of moral guidance.  The question of the good of that guidance cannot be decided by religion for the common man, but must be represented as a good and secular force *beyond* religion.  This is one of the nastiest points of the separation of the spiritual and secular: they are not separated but have defined limits of activity upon them.  A religious doctrine may be good, upstanding and moral within that defined religion, and yet not have rigorous backing that is acceptable to the secular state and the common accord.  It can even be Christian and fail in this test, and any wishing to make religiously guided teachings a part of the common culture and law must do the exact, same thing and demonstrate the worthiness of that belief or set of beliefs to the secular whole.

Of course every secular idea has to do the same.

Some folks seem to forget that.

Because the test is equal.

'Diversity' by creating a glamour around cultural differences is not an attempt to ensure that common richness is held by the entire society, but to impute that the differences due to those things is more important than the shared, common values.  That, too, faces the secular test of culture and society before even getting to the level of the overall state.  One of the pernicious attitudes is that those cultural artifacts due to class, race or ethnicity creates something different and that those differences should be emphasized.  What that does is not create an object in the landscape to face the test of the overall state representing society, but to attempt to drive wedges into the state to break up society along those hyphenated lines.

Ghettos and poor areas in America had been the place where the new immigrants typically landed as they were poor and unfamiliar with the culture they were trying to adopt to.  Yet, those ghettos would see a great diversity over time as various ethnic groups moved through them and into larger American society.  Waves of Poles, Italians, Irish, Chinese, Dutch, Spanish, French, Russian, Lebanese, Turks, Arabs... all have or are going through an acculturization experience in which they shift from being who they were to becoming Americans.  It is only in the near modern era when a view towards uplifting that diversity and enshrining it by creating a separate culture of the ghetto would attempt to wash out that long background and create a separate experience based on race, not culture. 

Those groups, individuals and companies who seek to emphasize this are trying to create a permanent underclass and place for certain portions of the population in what is traditionally a transitory place to achievement at a personal and cultural level.  The poor in urban ghettos are only 'poor' in comparison to their fellow countrymen in the main, and not poor as compared to the majority of humanity and, indeed, the majority of all humans living and dead.  Yet that success, perhaps one of the greatest monuments to mankind where a beggar in the streets of a modern American city has more access to the keys to succeed than nearly anyone else for all of human history is, instead, used as a 'wedge issue' to divide the Nation based on monetary class and race.  If we cannot acknowledge the success that our forefathers have allowed us to build upon, then we will forever be tearing at that self-same structure to make everyone exactly equal for all of life, and thusly perpetually poor.

If race were a determinant, then the 20% of black sub-population (a.k.a. the African-American community, although blacks come from more places than just Africa) in America who have shifted from the poor ghetto to the suburban middle class would not be possible.  By trying to maintain a poverty by race culture, those seeking that end are trying to permanently curb a group of our fellow citizens into perpetual poverty and unrest.  Seeking 'reparations' for slavery is a slap in the face to the generations of those who have stood between that era of emancipation and who had worked hard, damned hard, to ensure that their children get a better life and the full recognition of their equality as men.  That 20% is not an all time statistic, but representing a shift away from the ghetto culture as black Americans come to terms with the rest of society of what it means to be black in America without trying to tear down the rest of society to do it.  But then slavery and involuntary servitude was never a sole black issue, just a majority one, and the emphasizing of race then demeans those who were WHITE and brought here in slavery and servitude or, even worse, thrown out by a mother Nation because they were given a choice that was very stark for crimes committed: leave or die.  Others would flee because they were social outcasts due to religion, sexuality, promiscuity, or just unable to get along with anyone else and they faced a certain, lethal, end if they stayed where they were.

As a land of opportunity, however, if one can trace direct descent to those given the actual promise of help to a new life, then I do support that promise.  'Forty acres and a mule' represents a path given to better oneself, start a new life and work hard to establish that life in the community.  I fully and completely support a new life for those seeking it via hard work, so long as they throw away all the excuses used, now, to denigrate their forefathers for the hard work they did to give them a better life.  America should always stand up for those seeking to remake themselves as vital citizens who do not seek to denigrate or destroy society, but instead seek a better life for themselves and their children via hard work.  Because that is what forty acres and a mule WAS, and the value of the land and mule may have changed, but the value of the hard work to make something with one's own hands with those modest means is perpetual.  We have vast swaths of land that can be farmed by individual farmers who can find the means to scratch a living from the earth and any who want reparations *now* should have that exact, same offer given to them.

Sans bank account.

Sans school records.

Sans telephone.

Perhaps with the tools, seed grain and a short stack of MREs to tide them over.

A new life, a new land, a new way to demonstrate your worth to yourself by taking up those things your grandparents or great-grandparents were denied.  I am more than willing to see that for those who feel that what they have today is in any way what those who were emancipated were denied.  You cannot claim to be deprived and yet have iPods, expensive clothes, television and car as that places you ahead of the vast majority of humanity.  Not to speak of your forefathers.

To those who come here voluntarily, they have made a willful choice to adopt to a new land.  While modern electronics may make it difficult to leave one's home culture behind, it must be recognized that the physical change in venue means that the home culture is no longer operative for you, as an individual.  If you can't leave it behind, then why leave in the first place?  America is not here to attract the rich, but to attract those who wish to exercise liberty on behalf of themselves and their family.  The invocation of liberty is not to be separate but equal, but to be equal and prosper or not by your ability to live by what you can do.  In that area, the United States stands alone, culturally, as your birth does not circumscribe success for the individual: the individual does that for themselves.  Some will define success modestly, to what others see, and yet have great meaning in modest success beyond what any who achieve fame and fortune can ever find in those things.  It is not the height of the overall goal, but the steadfast work to achieve it that is the measure of a man in America.  Sadly, not all succeed, and that is in the nature of being human: we may all have an equal start in life but our gifts may not be equal to our aspirations.  While those who seek fame and fortune and then fall from the light of fame due to their lacks may have a more spectacular rise and fall, that is nothing compared to a man who sets modest goals in life and finds his gifts unequal to their achievement.

Learning is the movement to take in new knowledge and skills and then seek to apply them, then evaluate success.  Some individuals have in-born talent and tools that can make the most complex of things look ridiculously easy... until you try them.  Others come to terms with their lacks and yet their goals place them squarely in the path of their lack of talent and that individual must then ask if the goal is worth this effort on their behalf?  Finally, others will see that a single goal can be met by different paths and eschew a common way to approach things and blaze a new trail for themselves that may wind them up forever lost, but with an appreciation of what they have done and, possibly, finding an even better goal than the original.  Here there is diversity due to individuality, not by culture although that plays a part in it as individuals cannot divorce themselves from culture.

Government has very limited role to play in a land where liberty is paramount, as it is the basis of liberty for each to achieve as they are able for themselves and then live on those fruits of their labor.  Pure monetary reward is not the only measure of a man nor income, the ability to sustain a life according to how well they succeed in what they do and their satisfaction with that: that is reward.  Some individuals get rewarded in a monetary way out of all proportion to their work, they get 'rich' by doing very little in life.  That is how our culture is arranged, and if you create a cheap fad and profit from it by your understanding of human nature, then you are due the compensation in proportion to whatever you can get for that meager work.  The incredibly rich, those well off beyond all understanding of simple checkbook math, are those that can put forth those funds as they choose, and even try to influence and 'guide' the society around them through those creations.  The disdain and even hatred for George Soros is an echo of that felt for Carnegie, Rockefeller and a host of Robber Barons and 'Captains of Industry' throughout our history.  And when those individuals and groups try to get their hands on the form of power that is from the common man, namely government, the blessing of small government is witness and manifest: there is nothing there to control.  Limited government is controlled government, with restrictions upon itself that it crosses only at peril of disdain, hatred and revolution.

Here the 'diversity' is in ensuring that the common good cannot dictate to all the citizenry, so that liberty can flourish in those areas where doing good means doing well.  The moment one thinks to 'transfer wealth' or 'soak the rich' and then allow taxation upon the individual citizen to be unequal, we become unequal before the eyes of government.  Equality before the due process of law must be regular and complete across all aspects of government, and only where wealth gives power to destroy society or enslave it must government step in.  But the nature of that aid has its own peril, especially when charity that is the heart of the common man, is given to the punisher of government.  The effect of ensuring handouts to the poor, without having to do a thing to get them, is not 'good' but an enticement to stop striving completely and hand your ability to survive over to government.  That has a word in our language: slavery.

When the call to break our common agreement via amendment, to allow government to tax individuals unequally, it was promised then that this would never, ever, not once, go beyond the 'top 5%' of those who had wealth in the Nation.  To our shame, We the People bought that idea and now gave our common and collective protector and handler of the tools of punishment a way to treat the common man unequally.  That promise to 'soak the rich' went quickly by the wayside as those in the realm of government sought to create 'diversity' of taxation and find new and better ways to tax the individual as they saw fit.  Prior to that government must, by necessity, treat everyone equally because it could not differentiate on any basis amongst the citizenry.  The rich could influence society, but only in limited ways via government, and only when the tools of taxation unequally became available did discrimination BY government become a form of diversity imposed from above.  Government would not have dared to insinuate that individuals could not earn their keep, that they must accept funds from government, that not working was perfectly acceptable and that moving to government run housing that would be perfectly in-place in the USSR was a 'good thing' for the poor in America.  Yet by the 1960's 'diversity' had seen so much government power over-running the poor that this was the case.

For those of today who seek 'reparations' they really should ask how their people, once enslaved by the law were to become enslaved by the power handed to government to discriminate based on wealth.  While that slightly poisoned and addictive drug of handouts might be good in the short run, the long run is lethal to those seeking liberty and to be free.  Now that we head into an era of 'cultural sensitivity' based on any perception of any discrimination amongst minor things in life, each of those is made out to be the looming chasm of racism, sexism and a host of other maladies that are, by and large, gone from society.  Instead of individuals or society discriminating, now it is GOVERNMENT that does so by playing 'favorites' and pitting class against class, ethnicity against ethnicity, gender against gender, all to 'right wrongs' of times past which are, strangely, passed and not the present.  The very insurance of equality was equal treatment via due process of law, but the law is now very unequal in distributing goodies across society, and uplifting some at the expense of others.  That 'top 5%' pays for more than 50% of all public good, while the bottom 50% pays virtually NOTHING, which means that between 51% and 94% you see the other 50% of payments to the 'common good'.

I thought this was supposed to be an equal venture with everyone paying their way?

Just as society started to come to terms with racism was the exact, same time that government started to enforce racial quotas, racial distribution of wealth and started to dictate to a portion of the population that being enslaved to government welfare was far better than 'discrimination'.  The very thing that the poorest lobbied for, 'soaking the rich' would come back to haunt them as the rich paid the bulk of the load and those paying nothing went into virtual slavery to ensure that a government check would show up for them.  That would not only hurt this nation economically, by dooming a portion of society to perpetual servile attitudes of the 'gimme' type, and expecting hand-outs, but also it is a loss to liberty and freedom for everyone.  The very thing we now see as a bane amongst ourselves is enshrined in law and perpetuated by those seeking power in keeping those divisions in place.  What is even worse is that this was slowly devouring those who had modest jobs, and yet still were able to keep families going and enshrine an idea of self-worth through self-work and achievement.  Ending perpetual handouts is not an evil act, but one that recognizes an individual must have some dignity on their own to achieve, no matter how modestly, for themselves.  We abandoned the 'poor houses' for government mandated housing, and got ghettos that were run down the moment they were completed and fostered an idea of perpetual poverty.  No longer could the poor work together with some help from government to achieve on their own and lift themselves up out of poverty by their own hands.  Those who cried in sorrow at that plight of our fellow citizens never lived to see that turned into social isolation worse than any gulag as crime and anti-societal groups ran free in those areas.  And the actual property that was owned by citizens that was wiped out to bring this supposed good, ensured that those individuals would loose any chance to build themselves out of poverty.

Those deeply driven wedges into this state and its society are still being worked from government, no longer the problem created by society, but instead a far worse remedy than any problem it is supposed to solve.  Many of those housing projects were condemned in a short decade after opening as they crumbled into decay and the people in them had no ownership of anything, save personal goods.  In a society of monetary achievement there will always be a 'rich' and a 'poor', an upper 5% and lowest 5% that is pure math and cannot be changed save to make everyone monetarily equal and, thusly, their worth of no value whatsoever as no matter what you achieve, you are just the same as the next man.  Only government can mandate that, and become tyrannical to an absolute degree to achieve it.  It would end 'diversity' unlike any other thing on this planet and be absolutely 'fair' as it would treat everyone as servants of the state.  Yet it is in calling for that sort of 'fairness' to recognize 'diversity' that will assuredly end it.

We are a diverse people, from diverse backgrounds and diverse views.

Yet we join together to uphold liberty and equality so that we may all be equal before the punisher of government and give it no special power over any single one of us.

Because that is a good thing for all of us.

Out of diversity we become one single people, dedicated to liberty and freedom

Out of many, One.

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