It was in the upscale town of Westport, Connecticut that the 1955 book "The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit" was set. Later, it became a film.
The meme was The Organization Man trapped in conformity in order to support that version of the American Dream.
Daily the unhappy victim, Tom Rath, took the Metro North commuter train into Manhattan. There he wrote speeches for corporate executives. He was as tormented as Lee from the film "Manchester By the Sea."
Today, of course, we speechwriters probably wouldn't be able to afford living in Westport. More likely the contemporary version of Rath is a partner in BigLaw. He or she may or may not be happy. But, the schools are good. So, whatever.
Westport still carries that identity. And some residents, reports the Daily Mail, don't like that one bit. The flashpoint is an essay contest on "white privilege" sponsored by the town's diversity council - TEAM Westport.
Essentially the contest calls for up to 1,000 words on the controversial subject. Indeed, some believe no such entity exists. After all, didn't our founding fathers in New England have a mighty struggle just to survive.
The award is $1000. People around the world are entering. And, in the process, Westport could go down in history as, yes, a bastion of white privilege. Ironically, the branding might keep increasing property values.
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