Savage Inequalities

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Jonathan Kozol’s Savage Inequalities, changed my viewpoint on education, class, race, and equality. Prior to reading this book, I honestly believed that if we all worked hard it was possible to achieve the “American Dream”.  Whatever that has become, only God knows.  Education in America, is based on a political formula, I am going to call it taxation without any type of representation.  I have been forever changed as a result of Mr. Kozol’s in-depth look at the inequalities associated with being poor.  Growing up, I was told that education was free.  Go to school, my  parents’ refrain.  They said, “We could not go to school, you can go and it is free.”   Attending a public school is free!  However, I did not realize that the quality of the education received is` based on how much property tax is paid.  A poor child residing in a inner city community attends a public school and based on this legal formula receives a poor education.  Their parent’s live in housing projects home ownership is limited in such communties.  Mr. Kozols’ books changed my viewpoint on life in general.  I realized that Race in America is a sad state of affairs. I am one of the fortunate ones.  Due to God’s grace, only his grace, I am a inner city girl who beat the odds.  I grew up attending public schools.  In the 60’s my parents bought a house in a middle class neighborhood. I received a good education.   Education has always been important to me.  I  eventually earned a Master’s Degree from the University of Southern California.  Reading this book, generated a social consciousness  within me, about the importance of giving back.  It also generated a profound feeling of  sadness for the countless American children that will not receive an adequate education, due to their race and socioeconomic status.   This book also changed my views on American racism.  The reality that no matter how many African-Americans excel, there will always be savage inequalities.  It made me sad that so many low-income  Black and Brown  American, children will never have access to a quality education.  I do not believe that we will ever be equal in this color based society. Education is a basic right, however, the government supports this tax  system that punishes the poor and rewards the rich.  Public schools that are free but not equal.