Where is the Diversity in the United States Government?

As a society, we claim to be committed to diversity. Politicians, civic leaders, journalists, universities, and even Hollywood, all claim that diversity is our greatest strength.

Yet, our Federal Government appears to have disregarded this civic memo. While the rest of our country must strive to diversify, the three branches of the Federal Government demonstrate a total lack of diversity.

Generally, the empowerment of women and minorities is the objective of diversification. Yet, gender, race, and ethnicity are people’s physical characteristics. I feel that we need to diversify in other, largely ignored, areas.

Here is a never-mentioned nugget of information: every American President since Ronald Reagan attended either Harvard or Yale. That fact is correct – every single president. George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama all attended either Harvard or Yale. Those two university attendees also include candidates who lost the general election: Michael Dukakis, Al Gore, and John Kerry, for example. Even Hillary Clinton attended Yale Law School. For the past three decades, the leader of the Executive Branch came from just two universities. Considering the results, I’m not sure any community college could do much worse.

The United States Judicial Branch fairs no better. Every current United States Supreme Court Justice has also attended either Harvard or Yale Law School.

Only two universities have provided us with all of our presidents since the 1980s, and all nine justices. Considering the quality of our presidents, and Justices who seem incapable of reading plain English, perhaps we should rename the “Ivy League” to the “Poison Ivy League.”

In addition, there are no Protestant members of the Supreme Court. This is ironic, considering it was the Protestant faith that founded this country. Oh, by the way, it is also our country’s largest religion. But, let’s not represent it when deciding the constitutionality of our laws.

The Federal Legislative Branch (Congress) also fails any measure of diversity. The number one occupation in both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives is attorney at law. True, I would expect every Senator and Representative to have some lawyers on their staff. They are “legislators” after all. But, what about other occupations? Where are the computer experts, the farmers, the blue-collar workers, the doctors, the scientists, or the people in sales and retail? Is it really possible that no other profession can supply us with better representation than the law profession? Or, do lawyers fancy themselves to be modern-day Moses’s, imposing their laws on the people.

Furthermore, while the electorate complains about the greedy rich, and the evil one-percent wielding disproportionate power, the nickname for the United State Senate is “Millionaire’s Row.” Mega-millionaire senators claim to share the people’s revulsion for the despotic rich and the top one-percent, despite the fact that they ARE the rich and in the top one-percent.

Much of this is the voter’s fault. We elect the President, and our representatives in Congress, while the president nominates Supreme Court Justices. When millionaire lawyers run for office, they are likely to win. And, forget any chance of diversity when it comes to the reelection. The same people who complain about their federal representatives reelect an overwhelming number of their federal representatives.

Harvard and Yale. Mega-millionaires. Lawyers. They are the people responsible for running our country. We talk about diversity as a nation, yet we fail to demonstrate it when choosing our leaders. Considering the downward decline of our country the past few decades, I believe a little diversity is more than overdue.

 

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