TED Conversations

  • Ann Lee
  • San Jose, CA
  • United States


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I believe the right to an education is a basic human right..what can we do to make that a reality?

Governor Brown just signed the Dream Act and that propelled me to think about how accessible education is in United States and around the world. Education shouldn't be something that only the privileged can afford. What can we do to give every child an opportunity to improve their lives through education?


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  • Oct 17 2011: Well we know your name isn't Howard Roark...I was responding to another message about parents being the only way to get an education.

    As for me, in 1965, I left home at 15..from a "1%" home and worked as a motel maid to finish high school. My parents disinherited me. But I worked very hard and my high school teachers worked with me so I could graduate. Instead of sitting in an English course, I wrote a thesis on the writers who influenced Shakespeare. In place of history class I wrote a lengthy paper on how other countries in Europe viewed the revolution in America. For math, I was given a series of advanced calculus equations to solve. I graduated at the top of a 1,000 student senior class despite not stepping foot in the high school and won full scholarships to a lot of good universities. BUT I HAD GREAT GENETIC MATERIAL!

    If you still feel I have no imagination..well... Hey Roark,anyone who thinks they are the lead character in an Ayn Rand book is not dealing with a full deck, mon ami! And my name is really o ke kai. It is Hawai'ian for "of the sea." I renovated a 50 foot sailboat and sailed the Pacific.

    I was lucky to inherit intelligence...but some kids don't have a chance in hell. If you grow up with drug-addicted parents, it takes a one in a million person to escape that turmoil. But with your self-centered Ayn Rand egoism, you don't give a shit about the less fortunate. I do! That is why I have a free medical clinic. And I work with gang members to get them into college. What have you done lately for anyone but yourself?

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