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How to make fair rules

Kathy Ann Anderson, director of the Shasta County Community Foundation, quoted John Rawls' "A Theory of Justice," at the Women's Foundation of California meeting today:

"It's 24 hours before you are born. A genie appears and says: 'You get to set the rules of the society into which you will be born. You can set the economic rules and the social rules and all the other rules. The rules you set will apply during your lifetime and for the lifetime of your children and even your grandchildren.'

"Just imagine how thrilled you are with this offer! But you're smart. You ask, 'What's the catch?'

"And the genie says: 'You don't know if you're going to be born rich or poor, black or white, able-bodied or infirm, intelligent or retarded, heterosexual or homosexual, male or female.

"'Now, what rules do you want?'"

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