by Walter Brasch
Almost all children hear a set of conflicting statements from their parents, relatives, and friends. They're told if they study hard, if they work hard, they can achieve whatever they want. It's the "American Dream." But they're also told that life isn't always fair.
Looking for internships or jobs, America's children learn that no matter how much they studied or worked, it was the boss's niece or a boss's friend's son who was hired. Sometimes, the reason for rejection could be as simple as the boss thought the best candidate was intellectually superior or that the applicant had curly black hair and he liked only blondes.
Later, on another job, while the boss bought yet another vacation home, the worker was one of dozens laid off, their jobs going to Mexico, China, or Pakistan.
It's not fair that reality TV "stars" and pro athletes make 10 to more than 100 times the salaries of social workers and firefighters. But Americans seldom protest.
The owner of a mid-sized carpentry shop loses a contract to a large corporation, not because of a lack of quality work but because the corporation cut deals with suppliers. It's not fair; it's just reality.
One person driving 65 m.p.h. in a 55 m.p.h. zone is stopped by police; another, doing 80, speeds along. It's not fair. But it happens.