“Poverty is the worst form of violence.” Mahatma Gandhi’s words still ring true in today’s society. Poverty is nothing to sweep under the rug or put on the back burner. While many statistics state that poverty is decreasing, other sources state the opposite. Poverty is a hot topic in the U.S., foreign countries, and speaks true about many genders, ethnic groups, and children.
The view that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer has been heard repeatedly in reference to America’s income inequality. Though ironic, it comes as no surprise that America, a continent that easily trumps other countries in terms of wealth would be affected by the issue of poverty at such high levels. While much has said regarding the poverty levels, many economists, educators and scholars feel that the income inequality in America may be the reason why it is difficult to live and maintain a middle class lifestyle or to rise out of poverty into the middle class in the current economic state. With this in mind, the only way America, has a chance of lessening or eliminating poverty altogether is by understanding how it exists.
James Madison once stated inequality of the rich and poor predicament to be “evil” and believed that the government should avoid an “immoderate, and especially unmerited, accumulation of riches” (Johnston, 2016). As one of the founding fathers of our nation, James Madison had a concern about the separation between the rich and the poor. He felt the government should do what it could to avoid the separation, which one can infer that he meant for the government to tax the rich by a greater percentage, thus reducing the financial burden on the poor. A rift has always been present between the rich and the poor throughout history. Depending upon the job, the working class may or may not make enough to support a family. At this point, the
According to Inequality.org, “We equate wealth with ‘net worth,’ the sum total of your assets minus liabilities. Assets can include everything from an owned personal residence and cash in savings accounts to investments in stocks/bonds, real estate, and retirement accounts. Liabilities cover what a household owes: a car loan, credit card balance, student loan, mortgage, or any other bill yet to be paid. In the United States, wealth inequality runs even more pronounced than income inequality” (Wealth). Wealth disparity affects everyone in America. When the top twenty percent of earners in America take over fifty percent of total earnings in any given year, It can be see as very unfair by anyone who is in the middle class and especially the lower class of citizens in the U.S. It is safe to say that both sides of the political world (Republicans and Democrats) are equally worried about how economic inequality will affect their children and future generations. No matter who you ask, rich or poor, and whatever their opinion on the shape of economic distribution in America is, they most likely have a unrealistic sense of the state it is actually in.
Poverty affects millions of people living in the united states, poverty is measured by the amount of money needed to support the basic needs of a house hold. Poverty is measured by the SSA low-cost food budget assuming 1/3 of the budget is spent on food. The people with the highest percentage of poverty is shown to be Hispanic female households with no spouse present. The vast majority of people in poverty are women and children but in recent years the numbers of women considered poor have raised. Percentage rate is the percentage of poor in different counties. Looking at graph that maps Americas diversity shows that the highest poverty rate is in the South the Midwest has the least. I would assume that has to do with the weather, warmer weather
Although America is known as the richest country in the world, 43 million of its citizens are in poverty. Unfortunately, some of them work full time, yet are still in poverty due to the low minimum wage (“Should We Raise”). In 1928, the first federal minimum wage of 25 cents per hour was set by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to prevent workers from being underpaid. Since 2009, the federal minimum wage has been $7.25 (Smith). The age old debate of whether or not to raise it is still going on in the US. The federal minimum wage should be increased to keep up with inflation, help support the poor, and stimulate the economy.
To begin, there is an extensive debate over whether if the U.S were to raise minimum wage, could it really help the working poor of low income families. Nancy Cook, in her article from the National Journal, “Why a Minimum-Wage Hike Can’t Help the Poor”, she points out that two thirds of around 100 surveys from 2007 had a negative effect and that it does more for the middle class than the lower one. (p.14). So, therefore, from her
Wealth inequality in the United States has grown tremendously since 1970. The United States continuously reveals higher rates of inequality as a result of perpetual support for free market capitalism. The high rates of wealth inequality cause the growing financial crisis to persist, lower socio-economic mobility, increase national poverty, and have adverse effects on health and well being.
Amongst all of the presidential candidates of the 2016 race, one in particular stands above the rest. Bernie Sanders, running as a democrat, holds the highest capability to better the nation amongst all other candidates.
Today in America, income and wealth inequality has continued to grow at an unsettling pace. The rich continue to get richer, while the number of people categorized as lower class grows exponentially. As Joseph Stiglitz has explained, many theories that are seen as strongly Republican, such as the trickle-down effect, has caused the rich to take money from the poor, and as a result the lower class grows and the middle class disintegrates. The top 1 percent of America’s households currently holds 30 percent of America’s economy, which is much more than other first-world countries and helps to emphasize the extremity of inequality currently in America today. This increased inequality has in turn caused America to become a much more divided society; those born in poverty typically stay in poverty, with little to no chance of self-improvement due to a lack of education provided in their areas. In contrast, those that are born wealthy typically go to better schools, have better health care, and are all but spoon fed information on how to remain wealthy. These two sides of society almost never cross, and this causes the country to be more divided than ever. In order to limit this inequality, drastic changes must be made, such as large corporations paying their fair share of taxes and giving back to the lower class, and minimum wage should be raised. If everyone in America works together, we can raise social mobility and re-unite what has become an increasingly divided country.
In the video, Wealth Inequality in America, there were many things that caught my attention the second time around that i had not understood the first time listening to it. When they had surveyed 5,000 people I was not surprised to see that the ideal for most Americans would be a somewhat even distribution of wealth among the various groups. What I was most shocked about was what most American think about the distribution of wealth is not even close to what the reality has to hold. The fact that lowest 20 - 30 percent don't even register as sharing in the wealth of America as they are behind the poverty line. They are living of “pocket change”. The top 1 percent didn't even shock me as much as how the middle class did.
Trump, the poster boy for America’s most pressing problem - massive and escalating wealth and income inequality - is seen by millions as the man best suited to address this problem.
People all across America believe that minimum wage is a good thing and helps people without an education have a normal life, however others believe it is causing poverty and homelessness among the citizens. Minimum wage was made to provide enough money to live just above the national poverty line.But over the years the cost of living has increased while the minimum wage hasn’t. Today, the national minimum wage is $7.25, which is less powerful than the minimum wage was in 1968. This is because the minimum wage was $1.60 per hour, which seems low but back then $1.60 was enough to support a three person family, whereas today the minimum wage can barely support one person. All throughout the U.S., workers have been fighting for a higher minimum
Every American dreams of finding a job that pays well enough so that they may comfortably take care of their loved ones and themselves for years to come. Most Americans hope to find some way to make a living that they enjoy, something that they view as productive. Unfortunately, many do not have this luxury. In our society, a good portion of the population is forced to hold the base of our country in place while hardly being redeemed for their time and effort, and thus the problem of income inequality. Numbers of these people live from paycheck to paycheck, barely getting by, not because they manage their money poorly, but because the value of their time at work is negligible.
Many Americans believe that America has one of the most powerful economies that is involved in the global market and the best average living standards. Since the creation of the United States it has been known as the land of endless opportunities, regardless of social or economic classes. Under this philosophy, all citizens should have equal rights and given equal opportunity to progress in the workforce. However many Americans are living full lives and do not have financial obstacles to get over. Even so, millions of Americans are still faced with poor living conditions and struggle with providing for their families basic needs. Whether Americans believe poverty and inequality exist in America exists or not, the authors in three different articles:” Culture of Success” by Brink Lindsey, “A Great Time to Be Alive?” by Matt Yglesias, and “Born Poor and Smart” by Angela Locke, and “The War Against the Poor Instead of Programs to End Poverty”by Herbert J. Gans, shared ideas on how to help fix the problems of the impoverished community and address the cause of the problem. The four articles also explain different biases that the impoverish have to endure everyday.