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One of the biggest myths perpetuated today is “we all hate rich people.” In reality, we don’t. We hate rich people until we become rich ourselves. What’s more, we need rich people, and those who have achieved ethical wealth are actually some of our role models for success. More so, rich people need the poor to do better, if only to stay rich themselves.

My First Wealthy Role Model

When I was in grade school, in Compton, CA, a banker came into our classroom and taught a course in financial literacy. The entire world opened up to me when this man taught us what I now call the “global language of money.”

He wore a blue suit, a white shirt, and a red tie. And I remember that it was a good suit! He happened to be Caucasian, but that didn’t matter to me. He might as well have been green, as far as I was concerned, like the color of money.

I remember asking him, “Sir, what do you do for a living, and how did you get rich, legally?” I was dead serious. Almost no one in my neighborhood of Compton wore business suits, or had a professional job with a salary. Everyone I knew was an hourly wage worker.

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Posted by Natasha Eldridge, Senior Fellow, Office of the Chairman

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