Giving away the Lie
I was watching 30 Rock recently—which is, in my opinion, the best show on TV right now—and the character Tracy Jordan spoke to a group of schoolkids. He told them something like this:
If you study hard, every single one of you will one day be president of the United States of America.
It’s obviously false, unlike the less-obviously false line usually given:
If you study hard, any of you could be president of the United States of America.
But both are false, right? It’s not true that any of us could be the president, any more than any of us could be movie stars, or pop stars, or billionaires, or whatever. We can’t all have the potential to be those things.
But the myth that “anyone can make it” prevents us from criticizing or reforming the system that prevents 99% of the people from “making it.”
Watch 30 Rock. I command you.