We keep hearing that American’s must be fair, but opponents claim this is this simply code for redistribution of wealth. If this is the case, how does this affect the average person as some in government seek to make the playing field level for everyone?
According to the dictionary, fair can be defined in several ways. For instance, without obstacles; clear and open is one explanation. How about smooth and even? Another is just and honest; impartial; unprejudiced. According to the rules is one. Or it could mean promising; advantageous. Finally, there is a somewhat disturbing definition: neither very bad nor very good; average; passable.
In general, the concept of fair implies the treating of both or all sides alike. People expect this treatment to be just, unbiased, dispassionate and objective. Are these the standards of fairness as you understand them or a reflection of the way some politicians are using the term to ultimately regulate and control the citizenry?
A deeper look into the above definitions can be revealing. Take the matter of providing all Americans opportunities without obstacles. There is no way all people can start life, let alone the various stages of it, at the same level. Variables ranging from cultural differences to family involvement in a person’s development to an individual’s capabilities and ambitions are factors that enhance or deter from where someone is as they travel the road of life.
Most Americans agree that all people should be treated fairly, honestly and impartially, without prejudice and in accordance with the accepted rules of society. However, this should not restrict those with special talents or a commitment to hard work by making the situation more promising or advantageous for selected groups versus allowing individuals to achieve all they can on their own.
We must be very careful not to allow the concept of fairness to drag down those who excel while trying to advance the cause of those who may be underachievers. The definition of fair being neither very bad nor very good could result in a future America that cannot compete worldwide in education, business or by other measurements. Being average or passable does little to sustain or improve the quality of life for any of us.
Treating people equally does not mean we are clones of one another. In all walks of life, we must strive to be unbiased and objective. By no means should we discourage those who could be the cream from rising to the top. It’s this attitude that made America great.
The United States has long been the land of opportunity for those willing to pay the price it takes to be successful. There are no guarantees, no short cuts and no room for slackers in trying to make individual dreams come true. The road is risky and often lonely, but the prize at the end of the journey can be most rewarding. Continuing to provide this opportunity for our fellow Americans is truly an act of fairness.