In the midst of all the news about the riots in England, I couldn’t help but think about the growing gap between the rich and the rest of us. I grew up in a time of relative prosperity (for white, middle-class kids like me, anyway) and the gap between the wealthy and most of us was much, much less. University was a given for many of us and it was affordable. Canada’s Medicare system was so much the status quo that it never occurred to us that it could be challenged or eroded.
Now, I realize my nieces and nephews have grown up into a world where none of this is guaranteed or even expected. In Britain, where class and race inequality are even more entrenched, I can’t imagine what it would be like to be a youth today.
There’s been a lot of good analysis of both the English riots and the growth of income inequality. Rather than re-hashing their points, I’d like to share some links with you.
Here in Canada, The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives has come out with a number of reports and multimedia tools on the subjects of income inequality and poverty:
And finally, another article from Alternet, pointing out the awful absurdities that occur in a culture committed to widening the income gap: