Equity

By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return. Genesis 3:19

Equity has such a nice feel to it. It has the connotation of fairness and is a bedrock principle of American law.  Courts in equity always attempted to come to a fair and equitable result.  But the word has now been hi-jacked into something entirely different. The change in meaning is intentional to disguise an agenda. It is really a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

So, let’s start with the classical dictionary definition of equity which is: “Justice according to natural law or right; specifically, freedom from bias or favoritism.”  That is not a new definition.

But now, we have a new racially tinged definition where progressives have taken a word and changed its definition to suit their purpose, which is intentionally confusing. The new definition is now something else entirely. “Equity involves trying to understand and give people what they need to enjoy full and healthy lives.” 

Note the operative verb “give”, not “earn” or help someone to advance using their own self-effort. It is not a “hand up” to help those who are disadvantaged to improve their life circumstances. It is a pure handout and viewed as an entitlement. 

Recently, President Biden issued an Executive Order which orders the Federal Government to Advance Racial Equity.  It starts out with the phrase “equal opportunity” but that’s not where it ends up. 

I have previously written about the Marxist threat to our culture and our country. One of the techniques that this movement uses is to take words of common meaning and change the meaning so that the casual observer thinks that what they are doing sounds good. Equity and Social Justice are two examples. 

Equity is different from equality which is “equal treatment under the law”. As Charles Lipson writes: “It’s the difference between equal treatment and equal outcomes. Equality means equal treatment, unbiased competition and impartially judged outcomes.” 

He continues: “Equity means equal outcomes, achieved, if necessary, by unequal treatment, biased competition and preferential judging.”  This is diametrically opposed to our founding principles that all people should be treated equally and judged as individuals, not as members of groups. 

The words from our Constitution that “all men are created equal” are not a myth. 

The push for equity also contradicts centuries of Anglo-Saxon law and the Enlightenment principle of equal treatment for people of different social class and religion. As Lipson notes, the claims for unequal treatment are carefully hidden in “word salads” praising equity and social justice.

This move to racial equity is also unbiblical. God’s economic system is based on a work ethic. It is a principle, and like most biblical principles, if violated, has unintended consequences. In my 45 year law career, I observed the sad results of the unintended consequences of wealthy parents leaving their children so well off that they didn’t have to work.

Invariably, second and third generations do not lead productive lives if they haven’t earned it. One very wealthy client went to an estate planning seminar and asked the presenter how many children in the second or third generation who have been inherited wealth actually lead successful and productive lives. 

My client was prepared for an answer of a small percentage. Instead, the presenter said that in his entire 30 year career, no child was successful. Not one.  That answer changed his idea of leaving his children and grandchildren a lot of money.

The reason?  The next generation didn’t learn to work, resulting in a life that no one would admire. This same conclusion was confirmed to me by a lawyer who worked in one of the largest Trust companies in the U.S. whose responsibilities involved doling out trust money to children of wealthy people. He said that large inheritances, instead of helping children and grandchildren, usually did the opposite.

The point is that wealth does not assure success. On the other end of the spectrum, equity will not produce what those who advance it as a policy.  It is based on Critical Race Theory which is flawed historically and biblically. 

The move to equity is a claim that “the unfair treatment of previous generations or perhaps a disadvantaged childhood entitles one to special consideration today as an adult”.  In other words, treating people differently based on their race “could be based on a history of discrimination that has existed for a long time.” 

That last quote comes from Marcia Fudge during her testimony before the Senate so she can be confirmed as Secretary of HUD

In order to achieve the goal of equal outcomes, one might ask how and when are the outcomes to be fair enough? The goal posts can be easily moved. Equity is really a new name for “the oldest program of achieving equal outcomes”. It’s called Socialism. A rose by any other name is still a rose.

Ironically, I believe that many of means and programs to create “equity” will violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits any discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin. The Act was intended to eliminate racial discrimination to blacks, but it cuts both ways. A lot of this will end up in the courts. 

The challenge here is that we are facing a progressive push for equal outcomes, not equal opportunity. We need to be wary and push back when we can. The push for equity is not just at the federal level, but in our school systems and Universities. The next generation is in favor of socialism and equity without realizing what they are asking for. 

MENTOR TAKEAWAY:   Racism is a tough issue to deal with, and it is very complex. Your mentee may not be aware of the universal failure of socialism as an economic system, so the term “equity” might sound like a good approach. 

FURTHER READING:  ‘Equity’ Is a Mandate to Discriminate – WSJ

The Feds “Racial Equity” Dilemma – WSJ

How Equality Lost to ‘Equity’ – WSJ

Why Socialism Always Fails – AEI

WORSHIP:  Your Grace Is Enough – Tomlin

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