The Solidarity Wave
We are all born equal, nevertheless, we are born into socially constructed stereotypes and prejudices. Factors such as age, gender, sex, origin, skin color, level of education, and personal values are key in shaping our future. Together with students of the University (of Applied Sciences) Augsburg, volunteers of the Habitat Association workshop addressed the theme of social inequality and thus created the solidarity wave.
The Solidarity Wave in front of the Stadtmetzg
This installation consists of several info-boards on the subject of social inequality, and is located in front of the Stadtmetzg for the duration of the Canoeing World Championships. Various city forums of the Local Agenda 21 and their charitable work are visually represented here. As well as this, two such panels connect social inequality to the topics of sport and water, in order to draw attention back to the Championships. The aim is to present what opportunities there are to get involved as an individual, to strengthen minority groups, and ultimately to make social coexistence more inclusive and fair.
Multifaceted Societal Problems
When you think of social inequality, the imbalance in wealth and the ever-growing gap between the rich and poor certainly come to mind. However, the topic covers far more than merely financial issues.
Social inequality means that a certain social group has fewer resources and fewer chances at a fulfilling life than other parts of the population. This can also involve lacking education, fewer opportunities at social advancement, or a loss of basic human rights. In itself, the name social inequality never mentions any moral judgment, in the sense of (in)justice. Nevertheless, we are all aware that the varying distribution of resources results in different possibilities and opportunities in terms of social participation. Such social injustices can be found in every country in the world, albeit to different extents and in different areas.
Hostility and Discrimination
Disadvantaged groups not only feel the effects of their underprivileged position in the job-market or in educational facilities. Even today, they are repeatedly victims of discrimination from their fellow human beings. Due to their level of education, their gender, skin color, origin, physical or mental disabilities, or sexual orientation, people are not only disadvantaged structurally, but feel the consequences of discrimination in their everyday lives.
What can I do?
As an individual, it is primarily important to take this statement to heart and follow its lead: treat your fellow human beings as you would like to be treated yourself. As humans, we can and should choose compassion, respect, solidarity with those affected, and moral courage in our thoughts and actions every day. In addition, we can get involved in non-profit organizations whose work aims to create a fairer and more inclusive society. It is particularly important to educate oneself and communicate to other people what grievances prevail in our society and what can be done about them.