Friday, June 12, 2020

A Message from CollegeNET

The Real Way to Affirm that Black Lives Matter Is to Deliver on Equality of Opportunity.

It is often said that in the face of injustice, silence is complicit. However, words, even righteous ones, are also complicit if they are spoken devoid of innovative action and ideas. Systemic racism in the United States persists not because people in our country have been silent, but because those who have spoken have, for too long, believed righteous words alone are sufficient. They aren’t. The theory persists that if one speaks righteous words, there will be others out there who will be inspired to act, innovate, and somehow solve the problem. Or that if enough people band together to speak righteous words, then a new “movement” will generate change. Thus, words form a kind of emollient, a righteous soothing. So long as my heart is “in the right place,” I’ve done what I can. I can take solace that I am one of the good people who has added my voice for justice.

In addition to the current resurgence of sentiment as emollient, we are watching an historic wave of righteous words serving as new corporate marketing opportunity. By saying they “care,” companies and institutions can take credit for being on the good side of the issue, without offering anything substantive that could genuinely challenge or reform the system.   

At the risk of being seen as also exploiting our nation’s resurging attention to racial injustice, we are writing here to seek attention not to ourselves, but to the ideas we have been putting forward – ideas we believe can generate equality of opportunity and thereby overcome institutionalized racism. We are in the Learning Age. Therefore, if it is possible for us to change the value system of US Higher Education from one that favors “prestige” and wealth, to one that spreads access to higher education across the economic spectrum, we can not only optimize our nation’s human capital development, but provide bonafide opportunity for all citizens, regardless of their economic background or racial heritage.    

Please visit the following links to learn more: 
In 2015, we created the Social Mobility Index in order to challenge the value system of “prestige” which, by favoring wealth in higher education, deprecates opportunity for Black and Hispanic families.
In 2019, we began production of our documentary, RIGGED, which lays bare a US higher education system that drives the growing gap between rich and poor in our nation.