Essay On Redistribution

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Similar to Gilens’ findings, Alesina, Glaeser, and Sacerdote (2001) concluded that Americans redistribute less based on both political and behavioral explanations. In their pursuit to understand why European states have higher rates of economic redistribution than their American counterpart, the authors found that “Americans redistribute less than Europeans because (1) the majority believes that redistribution favors racial minorities”, (2) Americans believe they live in a meritocracy, and (3) the American political system makes redistribution harder to achieve (p.39). Thus, the majority of Americans believe that most of the impoverished are racial minorities, and due to the free are fair economy, they are to blame for their own poverty. Just as Gilens…show more content…
Individuals who maintain both of these identities will benefit the most, and individuals who maintain neither will benefit the least. Thus the question begs, if this is true why aren’t white men the most likely to receive the most favorable support for economic redistribution within the four-tiered framework? My answer to this would be the concept of protective paternalism, which is derivative of BS. Protective paternalism, “allows men to maintain an image as protectors and providers who are willing to sacrifice their own need to care for the women in their lives”(Glick & Fiske, 2001, p.111). Meaning, there is a cultural tendency towards viewing women as the weaker sex, and therefore needing to be taken care of more. However, this form of BS is only afforded to white women, by virtue of the color of their skin. This may also result from the legacy of slavery, whereby black female bodies were originally viewed as vessels for labor, whereas white female bodies were viewed as vessels for caregiving. However, that is another story, beyond the scope of this
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