Equality

In this country American means white. Everybody else has to hyphenate.

Toni Morrison

Systemic oppression is a fundamental part of a political economic system based on private property ownership. For thousands of years rulers have used the strategy of divide and conquer to maintain power. America's "democracy" was designed by slave owners to manage their property rights. We won't have an inclusive society until we create an inclusive decision making process: Democracy From Below.

Injustice is not naturally accepted by humans, in fact it’s been shown that many primates have the same intolerance for it. So, for us as a society to accept conditions of extreme inequality has required a very powerful story to overcome our ancient desire for fairness.

Humans have incredibly adaptive minds. Children discover very quickly how to survive in society—we learn from an early age about competition and property ownership. While most parents and religious communities teach children about the value of sharing and cooperation, the world around us contradicts that message. We’re all conditioned to believe that competition and hierarchy are natural and we must participate in order to get by. “Survival of the fittest”, a phrase falsely attributed to Charles Darwin is often repeated to justify the status quo. Modern liberal democracy generally values the rights of the individual above that of the community. As long as we don’t hurt anyone else, we should be free to do anything we want. We are entitled (sometimes expected) to vote in elections and it is our right to keep that vote secret. This seems like a perfectly rational way of organizing society and appears to be fairly egalitarian except that it ignores both the way that humans actually relate to one another, and the effects of economic power on the outcome of elections.