I believe it is self-evident that America is unequal. Yet I still believe in the American dream. Why? With inequality comes opportunity.
1. Just study computer science
I have a very simple solution to get ‘kids out of the hood’ and on the track to upward mobility and riches:
If a kid graduates with a computer science degree in America (at practically any school, doesn’t matter how prestigious or not), they are almost guaranteed a job in any tech job in America. And the good thing is that because a lot of tech companies are trying to increase diversity, getting a tech job which pays you a good salary is relatively easy.
2. Yes, it is hard to get out of the hood
I didn’t grow up in the hood, but I had a single working mom (working under-the-table as a waitress) and I had friends who were gang-affiliated. The only reason I was able to *NOT* go down the path of drugs, gangs, etc is because of some interventions from the community. My local church, my Boy Scouts Troop scoutmasters, my Sunday school teachers, my school teachers, etc. And I went to a good high school (Castro Valley High) which kept me mostly out of trouble from high school onwards. But when I was living in Alameda (I went to Lincoln Middle School), I had friends doing Ecstasy from the middle-grade (8th grade) onwards. And a lot of friends or associated friends who were gang-affiliated in Oakland and beyond.
I also had a lot of adult mentors who helped me (Coach Greg Lowe, and many others I cannot name them all).
3. What is the goal here?
Of course there is inequality. This is what makes America America. Without inequality there can be no social hierarchy. And everyone wants to climb the social ladder.