Today's book was Where We Stand: Class Matters by bell hooks. bell hooks has been a favorite writer of mine since grad school. She's so blatantly honest about what she sees and knows.
One of my favorite quotes today:
For so long everyone has wanted to hold on to the belief that the United States is a class-free society--that anyone who works hard enough can make it to the top. Few stop to think that in a class-free socity there would be no top.She has a point.
And people who live within this "class-free" society that isn't so class-free have obstacles to making it to the top.
As I drove back to my office today, I couldn't help but think about my 10 years in Turner Courts in far South Dallas. In a city of 1.3 million people, the small section of the city where I worked had absolutely no places to eat, shop, or work other than the two small corner stores that offered over-priced groceries and greasy burgers and fries at the back counter.
During the book club, Randy pointed to the video that I posted yesterday where I pointed out the one grocery store that serves all of South Dallas. The Dallas Observer reported on this a couple of years ago stating that the South Dallas Minyards serves over 30,000 people.
What I wish could've been included on that video was the reaction of the Fortune 500 lady I took into the South Dallas Minyards. In South Dallas, we always talk about how things are over-priced, but I'm not one who memorizes grocery store prices so I figured I might be over-exaggerating. But before I had a chance to say anything she exclaimed, "These prices are high!!" She confirmed my suspicions.
Would someone please explain to me why the lowest income neighborhoods have the highest prices?? I wonder if more people like this lady took the time to visit low-income neighborhoods and were forced to face the reality that in neighborhoods that average less than $10,000 annual income, the prices can be up to 50% higher (so that you believe me...a tub of sour cream in an Allen Kroger was 99 cents, compared to an Albertson's close to my house that was $1.79).
Not only does it matter, it creates situations that have allowed our society to exploit the most vulnerable. Is that the kind of society we want to live in?