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When the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed, it became illegal for employers to discriminate based on race; however, income disparities have not flattened out.

According to an article by Ned Resinikoff at http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/washingtons-silence-the-racial-wealth-gap: “In 1967, with the Civil Rights movement still in full swing and Jim Crow still looming in the rearview mirror, median household income was 43% higher for white, non-Hispanic households than for black households. But things changed dramatically over the next half century, as legal segregation faded into history. By 2011, median white household income was 72% higher than median black household income, according to a Census report from that year.”

The same holds true for women. According to an article on the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (www.iwpr.org): “women are almost half of the workforce. They are the equal, if not main, breadwinner in four out of ten families. They receive more college and graduate degrees than men. Yet, on average, women continue to earn considerably less than men. In 2013, female full-time workers made only 78 cents for every dollar earned by men, a gender wage gap of 22 percent. Women, on average, earn less than men in virtually every single occupation for which there is sufficient earnings data for both men and women to calculate an earnings ratio.”

IWPR tracks the gender wage gapStarting over time in a series of fact sheets updated twice per year. According to their research, if change continues at the same slow pace as it has done for the past fifty years, it will take 44 years—or until 2058—for women to finally reach pay parity.

Not surprisingly, the same holds true for those without a college education, regardless of race or gender.

So if you are a minority, a woman, or uneducated, or if you’ve just had a series of bad breaks, how do you overcome this? By opening and operating a successful small business. If your business offers quality products or services at a competitive price and you effectively target your market and run that business, you SHALL overcome.

Making the decision today to start your own business as we celebrate the birthday of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Junior, honors his memory and puts you in control of your destiny.