It is not that I am jealous, it is more that I am curious. I am curious as to how and why things happen. How is it that some people, even people who earn much the same as we have, have homes and lives that are monetarily richer than ours? Our backgrounds are very blue collar and I even have a grandmother who was a cleaning lady in Shaker Heights, Ohio. What happened to make this occur? How is it that some of us are born in the situations that we are? I do realize that my family generation has made the upward movement way more possible, and for that I am grateful.
I do not question the absolute rich life that we have, but it all makes me wonder about those who truly have to struggle and what goes through their minds about this. They must wonder what occurred to put them on the bottom of the heap in terms of finances and class. They might wonder why being born a certain color has had an adverse effect.
Sunday put me in front of the New York Times and once again, I checked out the section where you can see what a million plus, or whatever amount they choose for the day, can bring you in terms of home in different areas of the country. I am wondering, are most of the people who read this paper seriously capable of thinking about purchasing a home of this amount? On Saturday, I grabbed a peek at ‘The Week,’ a magazine, and saw a similar section. Most of the homes in ‘The Week’ (April 22, 2016) are over one million (4), one is at $999,000, another at $750,000, and the cheapest is $350,000. It makes one think, doesn’t it? If someone were to read this magazine for the news, do they wonder why they cannot afford a single home on those pages? Seriously, is the magazine even interested in reaching anyone without an extremely large paycheck?
I remember making serious career choices, way back when, knowing full well that my career choice would do anything but make me rich. I knew I needed fulfillment, and I got that, I knew that there would be struggles as we made other choices, like having MK home for fifteen years, even putting us to the point, at one time, of having me use public transportation to get to work so she would have access to the car for the boys. It also put us, at one time, in a situation where we were forced to drive around in a car that had a hole through the floor so you could see the road while passing by. Although we are nicely set now, the beginning years were not easy, but some of this was due to choice. Moving into the suburbs whose children I taught was never an option. I do remember, as well, that my only high school diploma-possessing mother looked at me when I thought of the Peace Corps said to me, “Are you crazy? Wasting that education?” She also was less than perfectly happy when I told her I was to be a teacher as she felt I should earn more money.
Inequity is a strange thing and although, perhaps, we cannot do much about the current financial inequity that exists, perhaps we could be far sighted and make education and healthcare more of an option? We could maybe work toward at least trying to end racial and sexual discrimination so that overall we would be a happier civilization? Somehow provide more options for people who want to make positive changes in their lives and have some upward movement? I don’t know, it is just a thought.