A fair society does not mean an equal one. Similarly, an equal society does not mean a fair one. William Beveridge measured the fairness of society against what he called the five giants of welfarism: want, disease, ignorance, squalor and idleness. We, are then, a fairer society than we used to be. Unquestionably. But today fairness is calibrated against very different measurements, such as ethnic origin, sexual orientation, age, gender and religion. Judged alongside these benchmarks, fairness becomes a more problematic concept. The most sensible ambition of government should be to ensure everyone has the best possible chance to succeed.
Dolores Mannion, Artistic Director, Cork Arts Theatre