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[Susan notes: I'm bothered by the 'cure' that takes children out of their home--without first making sure all families have basic necessities such as a living wage and adequate housing.]

Submitted to New York Times but not published

To the editor

Re: The Arguments for Early Childhood Education. Nicholas Kristof's claim that early education programs are "the best way to address American economic inequality" is absurd. It blames parents for lack of skill when their paramount lack is money.

Yes, let's help parents in poverty. First of all they need a living wage. Next they need adequate housing. What they don't need is the US Department of Education moving in with standardized tests and test prep for 2-year-olds. When outfits like Stanford declare five-year-olds exhibit a two-year gap, let's remember who's constructing the measuring tool and defining the gap.

The best way to address American economic inequality is to:

1) Raise the minimum wage dramatically.

2) Raise the amount of subsidized housing dramatically.

2) Tax the 1 in 4 corporations that don't pay taxes.

3) Raise taxes on the wealthy 1%.

Susan Ohanian

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