America is not the first entity to become a replica of the parent it rebelled against. Individuals fall into this trap, so why not groups of them called nations? In its path from colony to empire, though, the U.S, has played out a version of the drama that is uniquely its own, and that includes the role of privilege, especially the hereditary kind.
America set out to abolish hereditary privilege, as it existed in that day at least. Aristocracy was the mark of the parent — England — it so much wanted to cast aside. But slowly, new forms of aristocracy have crept back. For one thing there’s the class divide that the current Administration has done so much to widen. Its push to abolish the estate tax in particular would bring about exactly the conditions that Madison and Jefferson tried to prevent. Jefferson actually advocated a progressive land tax to counter large concentrations of wealth. “The earth is given as a common stock for man to labor and to live on,” he explained.