Affirmative Action's Anniversary

"Equal opportunity is essential but not enough," said LBJ forty five years ago to inaugurate an era of affirmative action. His words ring true today when the income gap is widening.

"Equal opportunity is essential but not enough," said LBJ forty five years ago to inaugurate an era of affirmative action. His words ring true today when the income gap is widening. "'Negro poverty is not white poverty.' The two might look alike, but for years African Americans had laboured, Johnson contended, under a 'blanket of history and circumstances' that had damaged the black family and provided young black men and women with inferior educations and limited job skills." The Guardian concludes that "Today, affirmative action needs to be put in historical perspective so that we can refocus on the widening economic gap between black and white Americans (for every dollar of wealth owned by a white family, a black or Latino family owns just 16 cents according to the Federal Reserve)."

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