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Equality - Essay Example

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Author’s Name: Due Date: Locating Equality: A Personal Perspective Equality is a tenuously forged term, endlessly revised throughout history with defective incarnations that borders what modern academics describe as the ideal meaning…
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Download file to see previous pages In other words, it is a fundamental human right that serves to build a society where man is treated and subjected to equal opportunities irrespective of their background, color of their skin, language spoken and/or religious affiliations. That the social systems that have hitherto been the source of power differences conferring nobility, often suspended by cross generational wealth, no longer serves as the necessary and sufficient condition towards a deterministic upward mobility in an equal society. Nothing affirms the foregoing than the famous preamble quotation of the founding document, the Declaration of Independence of the United States: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights; that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness; that to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed” (par 1). The weight of the phrase has since been the cornerstone of democratization and the basis of human rights movements. Even though the spirit of Jefferson’s thoughts above ultimately found their way into the mainstream constitution, equality [in the confessions of Martin Luther King, Jr] largely remained a dream for centuries. It is quite evident from the debate spurred on by the words and the battle that ensued afterwards in defense of the inalienable human rights that Jefferson and his co-drafters of the Declaration of Independence did not actually intend to actualize the ideal, inclusive meaning of equality for all men as it is today. Thomas Jefferson, like his Congress colleagues, owned approximately 200 slaves; a people taken as property, with no place in the American social setting to pursue happiness that Jefferson so dangled right in their faces (Armitage 76-77). A founding creed that seemed ridiculous in nature, equality has proved easier to enter in the legal documents than to uniformly accomplish in practice. The very idea than man is equal is but anathema to the prevailing power structure to this day; a power structure dominated by the wealthy and one in which the disadvantaged rarely find their way. That while the idea of equality in the public discourse seems topical and ubiquitous, racism still informs certain decisions within a section [that is actually large] of the American culture, including the voting patterns, is an undeniable fact. In fact, racism is but a single manifestation among a plethora of social partitioning that includes direct and indirect discriminatory forms such as work-place bullying, victimization or even systematic exclusion of an entire people of a kind. It is important to note that in the ordinary sense, the nexus between equality and "discrimination" has been rather blurry, off the explicit, progressive and moral principles. Thomas Hobbes in his succinct vision of equality within the context of natural law wrote that: "Nature hath made men so equal, in the faculties of body and mind; as that though there be found one man sometimes manifest­ly stronger in body, or of quicker mind than another; yet when all is reckoned together the difference between man and man is not so considerable, as that one man can thereupon claim to himself any benefit, to which another may not pretend, as well as he!' (Hobbes ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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