We need to assume responsibility for the education of a significant segment of our population or social unrest will continue in perpetuity.
During my career as a lawyer and businessman, there were two generational changes that I witnessed. The first was the introduction of women as partners or officers of law firms, banks, accounting firms and other professional organizations. The second was the hiring of minorities, initially black professionals, to the same positions. After a surprisingly short time, the new hires were treated the same as everyone else and everyone worked together as a team.
That was several years ago and, as time has passed, this situation has continued to strengthen and nearly obliterated the lines of difference between the genders and races at these levels. It is also my experience that this positive interaction is not limited to so-called “professionals.” Many other businesses have experienced the same transition with few issues, and the same can be said even when we are talking about laborers. I’m sure some readers have a different story to tell, but we are using broad strokes here to make a point and suggest a solution.
If this assessment is accurate to a large degree, then I doubt that we need to be overly concerned about the future of that segment of our society. What we need to address are those who are unemployed and those who feel underemployed or feel subservient to those who in their eyes have meaningful jobs. It is not hard to sympathize with those who are unable to feed themselves or their families for doing whatever they think may help their cause, or who let themselves be used by others who have different agendas for getting the population in general agitated about the way some people are treated by the police or by society in general.
The cure is education. Educate everyone who feels they are in this position as well as their children, and their children, until there are very few in our society who feel this way because they have the education to be able to apply for and be employed at decent jobs and enjoy the benefits that accrue to such employment. This solution will take generations to accomplish and trillions of dollars. And, who is going to pay for this transition? We are! If we don’t, we will find ourselves living in a state of anarchy wishing we had properly addressed the problem long ago.
This problem has existed for a long time and has not been given the proper attention and action because of politics. If we let politics run this country, we will end up losers. Now is the time for everyone to demand that this issue be addressed at the highest levels of our society and our businesses if we are to survive. It is fine if the politicians want to come along, but we cannot wait any longer for them to reach the conclusion that if we don’t unite on this issue as a country, we will become one of the least important countries in the world. Certainly not one where anyone would want to come to work, live and play.