Equality: What Do You Think About When You Think of Equality?

Equality: What Do You Think About When You Think of Equality? GENRE: Gay Nonfiction
ISBN: 9781925417272 (e-book), 9781925417265 (print)
PUBLISHER: Vine Leaves Press

    In the tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King’s Stride Toward Freedom and Malala Yousafzai’s, I Am Malala, Equality: What Do You Think About When You Think of Equality? presents thought-provoking and compelling personal essays that probe a concept professed to be the very foundation of our democracy -- a concept that may even be more vital today than in the past.

    From international bestselling author, Anne Perry who asserts we must look within ourselves to our emotions, experiences, and beliefs before we attempt an honest and truthful answer, to Dennis Palumbo, psychotherapist and author, who claims diagnostic labels used in treating mental illness often stigmatize and dehumanize the patient causing clinicians to view their patients in terms of their diagnosis rather than people, and Barbara Abercrombie, writer and distinguished university professor, who explores ageism as yet another form of stereotyping and discrimination in the language we use to describe older adults. These award-winning and best-selling writers, and twenty-two more, tackle equality across multiple spectrums -- racial, social, political, religious, marital, gender -- and run with it in surprising directions.

    What do you think about when you think of equality?
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    In the United States and around the globe, we continually observe how easily a click of a mouse or a few strokes on a keypad can send a torrent of hate into the universe. As recent examples, witness the racial unrest in the U.S., specifically in Ferguson, Missouri, and Baltimore, Maryland; in the determined, frustrated efforts of women and minorities to gain equal pay and opportunity; in immigrants' fight for due process and human rights; and in the outright bigotry and hatred espoused by one of the candidates embroiled in the recent 2016 U.S. presidential race.

    We see this seemingly never-ending struggle to be treated fairly and equally whenever we pick up a newspaper or watch the evening news. The multi-faceted issue of equality is ubiquitous and incredibly relevant.

    But what does equality really mean? More important, what does it mean to you? Webster's defines equality as "the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities." Extend that and you have issues of equality across a spectrum: racial, social, political, religious, marital, and gender. Equality in the home, equality in the workplace, and equality in all things legal.

    In Equality, twenty-five of our best writers, teachers, and activists including Dennis Palumbo, Felice Picano, David Congalton, Michael Nava, Catherine Ryan Hyde, Anne R. Allen, Barbara Abercrombie, and Victoria Zackheim, examine their views on equality in all its definitions, permutations, and possibilities, yet always in deeply personal and intimate ways. Each essay in this book is a unique exploration of what equality means to them.

    In "Everyday Equality," writer and editor, Barbara Jacksha explores her thoughts, feelings, attitudes, and behaviors, to discover if she sees and treats people equally. And does she? How would you fare on The Equality Test?

    Christopher Bram, famed novelist, critic, and essayist, takes a close look at the Declaration of Independence to uncover what Thomas Jefferson really meant when he wrote "all men are created equal" in the preamble to the famous document. Bram explores why our founding fathers in America insisted on equality in the first place, speculates about those turbulent revolutionary times, and makes some interesting inferences along the way that may surprise you.

    International bestselling author, Anne Perry, asks the question: "If I say, EQUALITY, what do you think?" Her essay suggests we look within ourselves to our emotions, past experiences, and profoundly held beliefs before we attempt an honest and truthful answer.

    Susan Reynolds, author and editor, begins her essay with the powerful and disturbing sentence: "I was born into inequality, but, in truth, all women are-even American women in this 21st century." She recounts the women's movement from the 1800s to the Equal Rights Amendment (E.R.A) ratified by the United States Congress in 1972, and the continuing struggle for equality today.

    As a veteran massage therapist for twenty-three years, Eldonna Edwards shares a lesson in human vulnerability in "Body Language: The Naked Truth." She leads us through an intimate examination of individuality and the equality of the human spirit.

    I guarantee as you read through these compelling and insightful essays you'll start asking yourself: "What do I think about when I think of equality?" It's bound to happen. All you need do is turn the page.

    “[In Equality,] Essayists aren't defending their doctoral theses against arcane counterpoints. They’re simply remembering experiences. All in all, a refreshing political read for today’s modern reader.” -- Frank Pizzoli, Lambda Literary Review

    “Forces us to take a close look at our beliefs, our fears—and yes—even those prejudices we would rather not acknowledge.” -- Caroline Leavitt, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Cruel Beautiful World

    “Oh, how I love this book, this collection -- thank you, a million times ... Equality has come at the perfect time. The world is in need of this book; I would go so far as calling it a Bible ...” -- Amy Ferris, editor, screenwriter, and author of Marrying George Clooney: Confessions from A Midlife Crisis

    “A carnival of intellectual provocation. Moving and inspiring, these are essays that move us forward to imagine endless possibilities.” -- Michael Bronski, Michael Bronski, author of A Queer History of the United States and professor of the Practice in Activism and Media Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard University

    “Some somber, some bright, these beautifully crafted essays on equality lay out the amazing breadth of a struggle that's achieved so much and still has so far to go.” -- Richard Stevenson, author of the Don Strachey private eye novels