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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

May 18, 2013 at 6:28 AM

Inequality in America

Wealthy insulated from economic woes

I found Jerry Large’s comments on inequality insightful and effective in outlining the disparity in our society [“Inequality a poor path to follow,” NWThursday, May 2].

I believe it is important to note the impact of our problems with diversity at home and how we interact with problems abroad. Large noted that many Hispanic and black families were harder hit by the recession than white families with equivalent assets. Wealthy students (primarily white) also score better on tests than their peers who have less economically.

This data indicates that our wealthy students are insulated from the economic woes created by the mistakes of our own economic system, such as the subprime mortgage market and the people who drive it. These same students who are insulated will use the benefit of their advantage to go on to be the next generation of economists, politicians and business people who direct our economy, as well as taking part in our efforts to help other nations “progress.”

Because they were sheltered from the full impact of our system’s failing they will be prone to repeating the mistakes of their predecessors, repeating the cycle at home and abroad.

Tobias Osterhaug, Bellingham

Answers hard to find

I appreciate the issues talked about in “Inequality a poor path to follow” and find myself asking a lot of the same questions.

Questions like “Why do we tolerate inequality?” and “What can we do to change this?” seem to be asked a lot, but the answers are what seems to be missing. I think the problem is that an efficient answer on how to fix the inequality within our economic society is yet to be discovered, so that is why it is tolerated in general.

Jerry Large brings up a good point when he talks about the fact that societies that are more equal outperform those that are less equal, and if we want to be the best we can be we need to be willing to pay for the enhancements needed, and the only way people who can pay will is if they truly want to be an equal society.

Maybe the people at the top like being the higher class and don’t want anything to change because they are comfortable where they are. Selfishness could be a big factor as to why our society is the way it is.

Hanna Paradis, Bellingham

Comments | Topics: diversity, inequality

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