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The Truth about "Equity" vs "Equality of Opportunity"
[Part One of Three]

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The Truth about "Equity" verses "Equaltity of Opportunity"
[Part 2]

Published September 11th,
in The Post Newspaper


In the busy, complex world in which we live, we often miss real truth, even when it's hiding in plain sight. Jesus once said, "… you will know the truth and the truth will set you free" (John 8: 32). This simple statement unleashes great power about searching for truth, finding it, living it, and enjoying its fruits; freedom.

In our Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson wrote: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights… to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,"

What does it mean to be created "equal?" It doesn't mean we all have the same talents and abilities. God made us different so we would need and complement each other. Some of us are plumbers, welders, accountants, lawyers, and the list goes on. All are important. If your sink is stopped up you don't need a doctor, you need a plumber. If your air conditioning stops working you don't need an attorney! Jefferson's use of the word "equal" means each of us has an "equal opportunity" to prosper while allowing for naturally different outcomes.

James Madison, in the Bill of Rights, made it clear that there're certain God-ordained rights which the government cannot take away. These include the freedom of speech, the right to bear arms, the right to assemble, to worship as we wish, and -- even if we don't like what the media does these days -- their right to report on issues! The Bill of Rights is about ensuring "equal opportunity," not necessarily equal results.

When governments grant rights they can also take those rights away. For example, the communist regime of the former USRR. It claimed "equity," not "equality," for its people granting "equity" in housing, medical care, food distribution, etc. There was no "equal opportunity" and the "elites" determined what was "equitable." We all know the economic ruin that "equity" brought the USSR. Our Bill of Rights restricts government action, a totally opposite approach, ensuring an "equal opportunity" for all, not just the elites.

A look back at our nation's history shows examples of failed grants of "equity." In the early years of the Jamestown colony private property rights were not respected. The authors of American Stories and Principles described Jamestown's early years as heinous. "At times, leaders (the elites of their day) actually confiscated all of the crops produced by the colony leaving the others to starve."

With the Pilgrims, investors mandated common ownership, which destroyed the incentive to work. Why work? The concept of "equity" leads to letting someone else do our work assuming they will take care us! All too often, that someone else is government. Sound familiar? Fast forward to today where in our country we are paying people not to work; relying upon those who are working to pick up the tab. It didn't work in the colonies and it's not working now.

After Jamestown, came the Pilgrims. Again, a similar story of failure unfolds. After a few years of near starvation, Governor Bradford at Plymouth, wrote, "his community was suffering from an unwillingness to work, confusion, discontent, a loss of mutual respect, a sense of slavery, and injustice." And this among "godly and sober men." Against investor wishes, Bradford granted the rights of private ownership and allowed the colonists to keep the fruits of their labors. This saved the colony from disaster.

"Equality" of opportunity works; allows people to blossom and to reap the benefits of their efforts. "Equity" doesn't work; it stifles initiative, the desire to be creative, and a reason for labor. Socialism and progressivism embody the concepts of "equity" while the true nature of human kind is emboldened with "equality of opportunity."

Don't be fooled! The "equity" approach of socialism leads to enslavement and tyranny under the direction of the "elites." On the other hand, "equality of opportunity" spurs economic growth, creativity, innovation, and individual freedom. Choose "equality" not the progressivism we are seeing in Washington today.


Authors and Columnists
Photo of Bill Sargent and Mark Mansius
September 11, 2021

Bill Sargent and Mark Mansius ran for Congress against each oher in 2012 and became close friends. They are writing a series of columns on freedom verses socialism, equality verses equity.
Bill lives in Galveston, Mark lives in Utah

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