By Omar Bihmidine
By Omar Bihmidine
Morocco World News
Sidi Ifni, June 18, 2012
When we pursue a career as writers, journalists and members of academia, we often concentrate on many issues before we commit to a particular focus. Among the many subjects that appeal to me is that of inequality. In researching and writing about inequality, I often hear the phrase “life is unfair”. Rather than blindly accepting this narrative, I attribute inequality or the unfair nature of life to human action. In Morocco, inequality manifests itself in every aspect of our daily lives. There is inequality in access to education, healthcare, housing and employment. Nurturing this inequality is a system of nepotism that rewards unqualified and undeserving people.
To illustrate my argument, I share an anecdote regarding two female fellow graduate students who were appointed to remote place to work as teachers. Shortly after their “exile”, one of them found work closer to her home and family. Her transfer had absolutely nothing to do with her merit. It resulted primarily from strong lobbying and manipulation of the system by her father, a principal inspector at an academy. Although the two had similar training, they were worlds apart in terms of their ability to access nepotism for professional mobility. In this case, it is clear that inequality between two individuals did not result from “natural” differences or capabilities but rather from human intervention.
As a general principle, I do not begrudge people who merit their elevated positions in society. I reject, however, the manufactured inequality that promotes undeserving people at the expense of their more qualified counterparts. With respect to my teaching career, I never blamed myself for becoming just a middle school teacher with a meager salary. Nevertheless, I am always disappointed when I meet some teachers, whom I once outshined, but now hold positions higher than mine. I become more incensed when I find out that their positions were gained through preferential treatment. For instance, I recently sat at a café and could not avoid hearing several teachers complain about their low salaries. While I sympathized and hoped that they would get their raise, I also wondered why these same teachers never asked if their competence merited a high salary. I wanted to go to their table and ask if they ever questioned why several highly paid teachers have not even graduated from training centers. Why are more qualified teachers receiving such low salaries. Life is indeed unfair!!!
Editing by Hisham El Koustaf
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy