Anderson Cooper Should be the “Poster Boy” for Affirmative Action

I love Anderson Cooper. I really do. I feel I need to get that out first. Okay, now that I got it out…the other day I was looking at the news feed on my phone and came across an article similar to this one:

Why Anderson Cooper Won’t Receive an Inheritance from Mom Gloria Vanderbilt

According to the article, Anderson Cooper’s mother, Gloria Vanderbilt, who is currently worth a cool $200 million, told her son from a very young age that she was not going to leave him any of her wealth.  Instead she encouraged him, from a very early age, to have a very good work ethic. And, it seems that Anderson Cooper did exactly that. It appears that Anderson embraced his mother’s belief and did not have any resentment about the idea of not inheriting great wealth.  In fact, in the interview, Anderson Cooper stated that he believed that trust funds were “initiative suckers” and he wasn’t so sure that he would have been so motivated if he felt that there was some pot of gold waiting for him growing up. And, he has gone on to be a very successful man, sans the Vanderbilt trust fund.

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Mother, Gloria Vanderbilt, and son, Anderson Cooper, from ABCnews.go.com

Because I come from a mother that has an incredible work ethic and constantly talked to me about the need to work hard and be self-sufficient (there was no trust fund to even consider in our conversations :-)), my initial reaction to the story was, “wow, that’s pretty cool!” Anderson Cooper decided to make his own way in the world, sans trust fund. If there was the potential for a trust fund in my life, I honestly would be trying to encourage my mother to think long and hard about excluding me. Oh, don’t judge me, you would too!!!

As cool as this story was to me, in the back of my mind I kept thinking, while his mother is not going to leave him a trust fund, she has paved a path for him simply by being his mother, Gloria Vanderbilt. I can’t help but wonder if some of the doors that were opened to Anderson Cooper would have been opened if he weren’t born a Vanderbilt. It seems that he, because of his mother’s wealth, received the benefit of a stellar education and experiences that the average child simply never receives. According to biography.com , he attended the The Dalton School, a private college preparatory school in New York City, before going on to study journalism at the prestigious Yale University. Tuition today for The Dalton School is approximately $46,000 a year. I would venture to say that children that are fortunate enough to be educated are receiving opportunities and exposure that many children in the United States will never receive.  And, as much as we want to act like that doesn’t matter, it does. There are advantages to being given opportunities and exposure, that is why many parent’s damn near kill themselves trying to give their children these things. Opportunities such as the ones that Anderson Cooper received, being born the son of Gloria Vanderbilt, put him on a path that separated him from the average kid in our society. So, of course the lack of a trust fund is no big deal to him.

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Gloria Vanderbilt

Taking this thought process a step further, what about the presumption in favor of giving “Anderson Cooper” a chance when he entered the work force simply because he was Gloria Vanderbilt’s son. When he walked into an interview did the fact that he was Gloria Vanderbilt’s son make folks listen a little more intently? I bet it did. Or, did he even have to go through the grueling interview process before beginning a job? I wonder.

Of course, once the door to opportunity was opened to him, I am sure he had to work hard to prove himself. And, I bet there were many times that he had to go above and beyond so that he didn’t feel as though people were applauding him because of who he was rather than recognizing his true talent. Which is why I say Anderson Cooper should be the “poster boy” for Affirmative Action. Affirmative Action is nothing more than laws put in place to give a group of people a chance to shine. It does not give you an advantage if you are unable to perform. It is simply meant to open doors and opportunities. It is up to the recipient to stay there. Isn’t that what growing up Gloria Vanderbilt’s son did for Anderson Cooper?

Oh, I forgot to mention that Anderson Cooper is worth a cool $100 million himself! 

Readers, you know I am anxious to hear your thoughts. So, let me know what you think! 

 

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13 thoughts on “Anderson Cooper Should be the “Poster Boy” for Affirmative Action

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  1. Wow, I like that, and that’s really thinking outside the box. Obviously, as you stated, we have no control over our family’s income, and how we get where we are obviously varies by so many factors. But, how we prove our true worth to society is totally our responsibly.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love Anderson Cooper as well! I think he worked very hard to get where he is now. I also think his mom had the right idea in telling him that he wouldn’t receive any of her money. Most children today, after they learn that they’ll be getting an inheritance, they do as little as possible. They feel like they don’t have to further their education because they will be rich when that lump sum of money is transferred to their account. I applaud Gloria for instilling those type of morals to her son. And I applaud Anderson for following through. ❤❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great read. As the old saying going, “it’s not what you know but who you that makes the difference.” This is a prime example of just that. The connections that we have can far exceed many other factors that impacts us.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It appears that some people are born into de facto affirmative action circumstance. Then you have some of us that are born into society behind the eight ball through no fault of our own. There was a commercial that played a few weeks ago that reflected on a world where every one had equal opportunities and we treated each other with kindness and respect. Unfortunately that world doesn’t exist. If it did. Donald trump wouldn’t be president or no where near the white house

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great read Tonza! Honestly, you have enlightened me – Gloria Vanderbilt is his mom. In essence, Anderson was still “privileged”. Who needs a trust fund or inheritance when your mother is the trust fund (her worth and name alone). She certainly paved the way for him. She allotted his opportunities that the every day child still wouldn’t receive (the cost of an his education prior to college). The exposure and open doors he was granted because of his blood line is by no mistake. Notice I said granted and not earned. As you stated I’m sure he developed his own Vanderbilt presence along the way but that’s ao much easier to do when you’re not fighting to “just” get in door.

    Think about it … his mentality because he was told he wasn’t being left an inheritance is the mentality we grind into our kids daily but for different reasons. Yet his struggle to the top would still look different.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great read Tonza! Honestly, you have enlightened me – Gloria Vanderbilt is his mom. In essence, Anderson was still “privileged”. Who needs a trust fund or inheritance when your mother is the trust fund (her worth and name alone). She certainly paved the way for him. She allotted his opportunities that the every day child still wouldn’t receive (the cost of an his education prior to college). The exposure and open doors he was granted because of his blood line is by no mistake. Notice I said granted and not earned. As you stated I’m sure he developed his own Vanderbilt presence along the way but that’s so much easier to do when you’re not fighting to “just” get in door.

    Think about it … his mentality because he was told he wasn’t being left an inheritance is the mentality we grind into our kids daily but for different reasons. Yet his struggle to the top would still look different.

    Liked by 1 person

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