#30DayEducationChallenge Day 18: The Racial Wealth Gap

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

To build on the base knowledge we've learned on history, housing segregation, and the education system, today we are going to explore the racial wealth gap. Like our other segments, the racial wealth gap's roots take us all the way back to reconstruction and a promise of 40 acres for formerly enslaved people to the Freedman's Bureau to discriminatory federal and state policies.

Something that has stuck with me on this topic is a conversation I had with a friend when we were working in a low-performing public school. Let's say families' wealth/economic status is on a scale of 1 - 10. When an upper-middle class kid (let's call them a 7 on the scale) goes through life, they are expected to maintain that 7 status, and it's a great success story (and not expected) to move up to an 8 in their lifetime. Meanwhile with Black families in low-income neighborhoods we all wonder why they can't just pull themselves up from a 1 to a 5. Why do we expect people with less resources, less support, less everything to traverse more levels than an over-resourced over-supported person?

📺 Explained | Racial Wealth Gap via Youtube (16 minutes)
📖1619 essay on the wealth gap via New York Times (15 minute read)
Note: if you're out of free NYT articles, you can copy/paste this link in an incognito window 

Reflection Questions (discuss with your group, join the conversation on Instagram, journal)
  1. What is something new you learned?
  2. What is something that surprised you? 
  3. What are factors that perpetuate the racial wealth gap that you see active today?
  4. Do you think Black people should receive reparations? How does this history influence your opinion?

If you just joined us, 👋🏼welcome! You can pick up today and follow this live through the end. After we finish Day 30, please start from the beginning and complete the first two weeks in order.

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