Farah Stockman

Mitt Romney’s a self-made man?

The GOP presidential candidate may have made his own fortune, but he had a big head start

MY MOTHER grew up on the black side of segregated Mississippi in a family of teachers, preachers, and sharecroppers. She won money to go to college from an oratorical prize. My father - the son of an Italian immigrant - spent his childhood in a small town in Pennsylvania. He saw himself as middle class because he had two pairs of pants. (Poor people only had one.)

Like millions of Americans, they climbed the socioeconomic ladder painstakingly, through scholarships and federal loans and research grants. They became university professors. Yet I have never heard either of them ever claim to be “self-made.’’

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