Tag Archives: Winter 2020

Equality is not enough

Imagine you are facing a wall with two friends. This wall is 7 feet tall. You are about 6-foot-2 and your friends are 5-foot-10 and 5-foot-2. You need a stool to see over the wall, so you get yourself a box that is 10 inches tall. The principle of equality would say that this same box should be provided for your two friends as well, and that is sufficient. You all are provided the same materials to do the same task. Is this not fair?

This method of doling out boxes according to the principle of equality does not work. Clearly, if you are any good at mental math, you know that it is only you who can see over the wall. Your friends, having different needs in accordance with their heights, are still stuck staring at bricks.

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