The Other Wes Moore

by Wes Moore

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Why did Other Moore's mother view education as an escape? How did this impact Other Moore?

Quick answer:

Other Moore's mother believed that education was an escape because it would give her a “golden ticket” to another world, a world of better employment opportunities. Her struggle for an education impacts the Other Moore by giving him the impression that it's impossible to escape the neighborhood.

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The Other Wes Moore's mother, Mary, desperately wants to escape her neighborhood and figures that education is the way to do it. After completing her associate's degree at the Community College of Baltimore, she is accepted by the prestigious Johns Hopkins University, where she hopes to study for a bachelor's degree.

For Mary, the university is her “golden ticket” out of the neighborhood, a place full of drugs, crime, poverty, and chronic lack of opportunity. With a bachelor's degree under her belt, she stands a very good chance of escaping the neighborhood by getting a much better job.

Unfortunately, Mary's dreams are shattered after her Pell Grant is terminated due to budget cuts. Her son Wes's immediate reaction is to help out his mom by getting a job, but he's too young to work.

Over time, however, the cruel ending of Mary's hopes and dreams has a damaging impact on Wes. Through his mom's example, he sees that education doesn't necessarily provide a means of escape.

Discouraged at what happened to her, and stuck in a neighborhood where the only way to make serious money is through dealing drugs, Wes falls into the same lifestyle as his older brother Tony, a serial criminal and drug dealer.

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