Social inequality

Dear Editor: Regarding a recent letter of complaint titled “Measure O” in the Oct. 2 edition of the Patriot about illegals and their children costing taxpayers money because all children are required to be in school by law, as well as the usual complaints about the “welfare state”:

To begin, there is a price for everything and a trade off. This next generation of Latino children whose parents are illegal could be educated and we could look at it as a positive investment in human beings who will be grateful to their adopted country and serve their  communities as productive contributing members of society. Or we can create the next generation of organized crime. Children not in school become illiterate, and fall prey to adults that would exploit them.

Many Americans have either a very short memory or no memory at all about all of the U.S. government meddling in the politics and policies of the Latin Americas that has created dictatorial regimes and political assassination, e.g.,  the Sandinistas, Manual Noriega, the Iran Contra scandal, the assassination of Salvador Allende, the “disappearance” of Guatemala, Argentina, and Chile and the role that these U.S. policies have played in  the mass exodus of Latin Americans to this country to escape the chaos of wars and corruption and ethnic cleansing and brutal crimes against humanity. Case in point, a statistic: 95,000 Latin American children were killed in conflicts by 2012.

The astounding truth about today’s modern immigrant problem is that the United States of America, its past presidents and the CIA, created this problem called “illegal immigration” and narco terrorism. Now at this late stage in the game, there is a great deal of hypocritical complaining going on.

There have been arguments made about the “50 percent” allegedly financially supporting the 50 percent who don’t want to work and some how or another this is all tied in with “illegals” wanting to send their children to our schools. I don’t know where Ms. Van Leuven gets her numbers. I can tell you where I get mine. First number: 30,000 people in America own 98% of the wealth according to the book written by author Sasha Abramsky called, “The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives”, (currently at the Downey library). 31 percent of Americans will stop spending money in their local economies, causing a nationwide recession,  should the conservatives in his country manage to stop all social welfare programs. This according to economist Paul Krugman of the New York Times.

The other point  by Ms. Van Leuven, is about those who don’t want to work, which I find to be an incredible exaggeration.

For instance, the real case of a guy featured in an op-ed piece (possibly a Steve Lopez) in the LA Times; he was in his day an educated, accomplished corporate accountant whose job was downsized. In his 60’s and facing ageism discrimination from prospective employers who prefer younger candidates and forced to take an entry level job, I can’t recall what kind, but I believe it was as a barista in a coffee shop. This guy is a great example of the underemployed and the unemployable who don’t want but have to resort to social services.

There are deeper and greater nuances to the stories of people on social welfare. Take into consideration the modern world of the internet and the major corporations that collect and sell our personal data. In this day and age, everything collected about you, from credit card debt, to your personal stats, e.g. age, sex, race, geography, schooling, marriage, divorce, DUI’s, criminal records, firings, quittings, car crashes, insurance claims, lawsuits,  where you shop, what you buy, your preferred brand of toilet paper and how often you use it, how you Facebook or Twitter or don’t, etc. All of these factoids about us are for sale and utilized by employers who will weed out certain candidates in an unfair discriminatory fashion, thus creating a new rank and file in the economic pecking order changing the rules in society and culture about who can be employed and who cannot.

Controlling the insurance companies, controlling corporate hostile takeovers that lead to one-sided monopolies that phase out the competition and drive up the costs of everything to the consumer, forgiving the debts of most middle class and working people, outlawing or limiting greatly the way data mining companies use our information, rent controls, free higher education,  equal pay,  living wages, housing for the homeless,  a purging of government corruption, putting an end to “price fixing” proliferated by major food manufacturers, ending Americas wars and taking the monies meant for the “war machine” or military contractors, and injecting those funds into greatly neglected parts of the country, such as Ferguson,  Mo., Detroit,  Mi., Chicago, Il., Stockton,  Ca., etc., is in part a solution to the public of dependency.

It is corporate and political corruption that is at the center of inequality in America creating an entire generation of needy people,  and regardless of the fact that the chief complainers of this social welfare system are right wing conservative types I would go as far to suggest some conspiracy in that in spite of their most virulent complaints they secretly like the system just the way that it is.

Greta Campbell




Published: Oct. 16, 2014 - Volume 13 - Issue 27