Education and the road to …

Opportunity

nita 4yo SA

 

The solutions to problems that confront our society are diverse and complex, requiring a deep and broad understanding.  Education, above all, then, cannot be ignored or made trivial … this most vital ingredient, at its best and most true, has creative power.

Every soul, no matter race, sex, creed, economic situation … should have the opportunity to share in solutions.   Since we cannot afford to lose any mind to shortsightedness, through greed, prejudice or the like, respecting every input (whether we agree or disagree) not knowing what we need absolutely, where the best solution may be found or which stronghold of human ingenuity will offer up the needed ideas at any given moment in our history, essential.  Kindness, then, is not only a grace.  It is intelligence at its greatest potency; and motivated by the love that gives strength to see beyond ourselves and a narrow view.

What, then, is opportunity according to thesaurus.com?  Synonyms: excuse, freedom, hope, moment, space, time, break, connection, contingency, cut, fortuity, go, happening, hour, juncture, leisure, liberty, occasion, opening, pass, relief, room, run, scope shot, show, spell, squeak, stab, turn, fair shake, fighting chance, good fortune, good luck, iron in the fire, one’s move, one’s say, one’s turn, the hunt, the running … are only a few of the words one could use to equate with opportunity.  Time and environment then determine opportunity for most of us, and it is a rare individual that can overcome these two.

The antonyms to opportunity, from this same source, are closing, closure, misfortune, reality, truth and bad luck.  The addition of reality and truth chilled, but it perhaps echoes what we face today … since, for most of the world, lack of opportunity is a reality and the truth that many live.

Throughout my life, this has been a heartfelt search … how do we make it possible for all children to thrive, to lead mindful and fulfilling lives?  Teach a man to fish … so the saying goes.  All, even the smallest child, need to be part of something bigger, to feel as though he/she belongs.  We are not fulfilled in this manner by charity, but by kindness … and kindness involves respect for human dignity.  Dignity comes in all forms, suited to each individual and so there is no one solution.  That must be decided by each in one’s own time and way.  Through a full and meaningful education, one is given the tools, the insight to find the way — education that is broad and without prejudice, one that gives the same opportunity to all children in all environments and situations.

In my view, this can only be done through levies that are proportionately drawn from the community as a whole according the ability to pay those taxes, and distributed evenly to all communities.  This would allow those children in poor communities to share in equal opportunity education.  It would require less school busing, less waste in higher income neighborhoods of much needed tax dollars, give needed money to areas that have long suffered dwindling resources, and build stronger communities in all parts of our world ….  It would encourage integration, not only in schools but in housing, creating better understanding between peoples.  Resources, in time, would become more evenly distributed and accessible to children of all environments.  Those environments would become more equitable in time, as well.

It has been said time and again, that there will always be poor.  This said, “the poor” are not a species but a description of circumstances.  We can change those circumstances and make a better world.

Anita Tillemans

April 30, 2015

 

 

*Citations

American Psychological Association (APA):

opportunity. (n.d.). Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition. Retrieved April 30, 2015, from Thesaurus.com website: http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/opportunity

Chicago Manual Style (CMS):

opportunity. Thesaurus.com. Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition. Philip Lief Group 2009. http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/opportunity (accessed: April 30, 2015).

Modern Language Association (MLA):

“opportunity.” Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition. Philip Lief Group 2009. 30 Apr. 2015. <Thesaurus.com http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/opportunity>.

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE):

Thesaurus.com, “opportunity,” in Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition. Source location: Philip Lief Group 2009. http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/opportunity. Available: http://www.thesaurus.com. Accessed: April 30, 2015.

BibTeX Bibliography Style (BibTeX)

@article {Thesaurus.com2015,     title = {Roget’s 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition},     month = {Apr},     day = {30},     year = {2015},     url = {http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/opportunity},

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Author: Anita Suzanne Dedman-Tillemans

For love of wilderness.