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Conclusion My grandfather married my grandmother, whose family had made the crossing a generation earlier in the 1800s. My grandmother’s parents still worked on the plantation when she married my grandfather. My grandfather wanted nothing to do with life on the plantation. As soon as he was off the boat, he started a photography business. He was an entrepreneur. My grandfather was very successful. While most fellow immigrants were working for $1 a day, living in housing owned by the plantation, my grandfather owned a house and a car. It was not long before my grandfather was investing in the stock market and buying beachfront property on Maui, the island where my dad’s family lived. In 1929, the stock market crashed, and the Great Depression began. My grandfather’s business dried up, and he soon lost his house, car, and his beachfront property. My dad was ten years old when the Depression began. That era affected his outlook on life. He saw Japanese and other immigrants as paid slaves working on the plantations of the rich. He saw his dad, a man who got off the plantation, wiped out by the market crash and economic depression. In my dad’s mind, the only safe way off the plantation was through education. Rather than go to medical school, he chose to become a teacher, with the hope that a good education would provide a way off the plantation for the children of the immigrants. He saw education as an escape from the enslavement by the rich, a passage out of bondage. My dad dedicated his life to education. He graduated from the University of Hawaii and was soon promoted to principal of a school, the youngest principal at the time. He held a full-time day job and remained in school to obtain higher academic degrees. He was selected for advanced programs at Stanford University, Northwestern University, and the University of Chicago. He worked hard and studied hard as he worked his way up the ladder of public education, eventually becoming the superintendent of education for the State of Hawaii. My dad would often tell us kids, “The rich brought immigrants to Hawaii to work on their plantations. As soon as the workers arrived, 194

Profile for Jamiel Cotman

Unfair advantage ebook  

by Rich Dad, Robert Kiyosaki

Unfair advantage ebook  

by Rich Dad, Robert Kiyosaki

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