‘God has made us equal’ but unfortunately, we all do not live an equal and decent quality of life. Some do not even have two full meals a day while some have ten to fifteen chefs preparing food for a family of three. It is not my intention to get into inequality in this article. Equal or unequal, we have to be smart enough to identify that the problem of inequality exists and definitely, socialism or communism is not a solution. ‘All isms are lethal’ :).
Caste in India is an ascribed status (something given to you by birth). You are born as a Brahmin and die as a Brahmin. You are born as a Dalit and die as a Dalit unless you ‘sanskritize’ your family. Class which is also a social status can be categorized as low, middle and upper at a broad level though there can be fine distinctions like upper middle class, ultra low and ultra high class. Class is not ascribed. It can be achieved ! And that is good news.
So, how can you achieve or earn this status for yourself which also means earning a decent way of living for you, your family and the generations to come? You will be the pariah to liberate your lineage from the clutches of poverty. One the most realistic and secular way of achieving it is through education and there are umpteen number of examples that I have come across to prove the same.
Upward social mobility, that is moving yourself up the social ladder in terms of class status can be more certain through ‘proper’ education. While you could give examples of those who did not ‘educate’ but still became successful through hard work, fate or a mix of both but those cases are very uncertain and random. Success through education is a given. That is the beauty of education.
Education is a means of mobility open to all – rich, poor, colored, white, low caste, untouchable, men, women, transgender, etc. And education is going to play a very important role in the future meritocratic society and knowledge economy. Having said this, there is a lot to make ‘good’ education accessible to all and reduce the effects of social capital on the kind of education that one can have.
My life-endeavor is towards a goal to make ‘world class’ education available to all and create a service which will be the ‘netflix’, ‘facebook’, ‘youtube’ and ‘google’ of education.