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Playing the 'Color Game' and Pursuing the American Dream

December 12, 1987

How ironic that the parents of a student at a private school in Glendale should be suing the school for $2.1 million because of their privileged offspring's participation in the color game.

After three days of playing the role of a member of the lowest of the four rigidly defined social classes, the parents forced the school authorities to abandon the social justice class activity because their little darling found it too "humiliating" and the parents assessed it as "ungodly and un-Christian."

I say ironic because their outrage only highlights the need for the pampered and privileged in our society to learn what it truly means to be at the socioeconomic end of the ladder. This class was designed just to do that and neither the pupil nor parents apparently can take it.

I ask Mr. and Mrs. Sanchez-Goyen: If you think that being treated as inferior for a few days--in a let's-pretend situation--was so damaging to your daughter, then how do you assess the damage to the children of the poor and disenfranchised who suffer these indignities every day of their lives?

I would take their self-righteous posturing more easily were I convinced that they are also prepared to fight for the rights of those whose parents don't have the power to shout "time-out" when the going gets tough. I also wonder if they would have responded with such outrage had their daughter drawn the opportunity to play a member of the upper class.

ELLEN GREHAN

Culver City

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