On inequality

Yesterday I was browsing through my bookshelves and seeing so many books I would like to donate to a charity (read: get rid of). So I thought it is a pity we do not have anything like Oxfam in Italy and decided to browse in their site.

I found out that Oxfam partnered up with Blog Action Day to start a global discussion about inequality and today anyone may join in.

So here I am, sharing a few shallow thoughts.

At first, as I am totally boring, I decided to look up the etymology of the word inequality. As it is something I never do, I am already developing a headache. It seems, at any rate (based upon my five minutes sparse readings of the headlines) that it all originated from those ancient Latins back there, which used the word aequus to designate equal. I find it funny that in Italian we have two similar words: equo, which means fair, and uguale, which would be the translation of equal, and it comes from Latin aequalis. Is anyone still here? Thank you so much. You may wonder why this is funny and I do wonder about it as well, perhaps it will come in my mind after lunch break. 

So, despite being a billion far from becoming a billionaire (and will always stay that far given the amount of money I squander in cookbooks and clothes), despite being a woman (oh dear) and despite being Italian and Catholic (oh dear, oh dear), I seriously do not know how to end this sentence.

I probably wanted to say that I have been blessed by a relatively quiet childhood. My mother was strong and very capable in hiding whatever was the issue that haunted her. In my family I never felt I was a step behind: my parents and my brother always supported me in my studies and in my desire to explore the world and to start a difficult career later.

Yet growing up, inequality strokes me too: not all professionals are created equals. So it is not just a matter of what you say, how much you study to support your ideas, it is also who you are that matters. Influential professionals are treated differently.

Even clients sometimes are weird: they always expect the male counterpart to show up and address me as a secretary of my self-employed self.

Clients are not created equal as well. It is so daunting to fight for the rights of human beings and meeting scorn and disrespect because the person you are representing is of a different shade and culture.

And finally, I always forget that richness is not equally divided. I was raised to bear all my responsibilities, for my mistakes, for my financial faux pas and I kind of feel it is only my fault if income does not meet my expectations.

Yet, it is so iniquitous that a few can enjoy privileges only because they have access to more power. The optimistic self says, improvements have been made and will come again, although lately it does not seem so often the case.