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Author: Lesley Macniven
Year: Future

When MP Barbara Castle staked her political career to ensure the Equal Pay Act was passed, by the predominantly male government, in 1970, she believed in the future women would receive equal pay for work of equal value.

Today, 50 years later the average gender pay gap in the UK was last reported as being 17.3%. Reporting was suspended in 2020.

When Martin Luther King gave his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech in 1963, he hoped for a future where ‘Black Lives Matter’ as much as white.

Today the world is outraged by the death of George Floyd, but in Scotland in 2017 more than 1 in 5 Scots felt justified in feeling prejudice towards certain other groups, with people of colour three times more likely to experience discrimination than white ethnic minorities.

When my boomer parents raised me in the 1970s, they wanted my future, Gen X, life to be better than theirs.

Today my Gen Z children will enter an adult world where Millennials in their 30s still live with their parents.

When vaccines were developed in the 1700s we thought this would contain outbreaks of disease in the future.

Today we are in the midst of a global pandemic that is further widening the gap between the “haves” and “have nots” in society.

When it’s time to “Build Back Better”,
What future do you want for Scotland, the UK, the World?
What will YOU do to achieve it?
What small sacrifices will you continue to endure?
What helpful habits will you make yourself maintain?
What will you do for others, not yourself?
How will you advocate?
Who will you vote for?

When will the future become today.
Will it always be, at least,
a day away?
And is that, really, okay?