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Shared Fate: Why White Boomers and Kids of Color Depend on Each Other

David Callahan

I've written a lot lately about how this country has given up on school integration and left millions of kids of color concentrated in the nation's worst public schools with few white classmates. 

One of the groups who should be most worried about this resegregation are white Baby Boomers. Why? Because their retirement security partly depends on the fiscal solvency of Social Security and Medicare—a solvency, in turn, that will hinge on a strong and productive workforce in coming decades. 

At least half of that workforce will be nonwhite by the time that the bulk of today's Boomers are relying on entitlements. And a lot of those kids are now in those segregated, struggling schools I've been writing about. 

In 1950, there were 5.1 workers for every retiree on Social Security. Today, there are about three workers. By 2040, there will be 2 workers. 

Those workers better better be good at generating national wealth. If they aren't, the Boomers will be in deep trouble.