In other words, America has a widening gap between its wealthy and poor. As the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, there is a problem emerging: the disappearance of the middle class. Low-wage workers continue to fall behind those who make higher wages, and this only widens the gap between the two. There has been an economic boom in the United States, which has made the country more prosperous than it has ever been. That prosperity does not reach all people; it seems to only favor the rich. Rising economic segregation has taken away many opportunities for the poor to rise in America today. The poor may find that the economic boom has increased their income; however, as their income increase so does the prices they must for their living expenses (Dreier, Mollenkopf, & Swanstrom 19).
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.
America has a lengthy history on how it became the powerful country it is today, and although its history can be interrupted in many ways (depending who you ask) one thing that is for certain is that wealth has yet to be distributed equally amongst minorities. According to the article “Income inequality matter; Extreme gap in wealth makes society unstable.” Philip Meyer claims that the wealth gap between whites and minorities has existed since Ronald Reagans’ term of presidency (A9). Although Ronald Reagans’ term ended many years ago the mistakes that caused this imbalance of wealth (and its aftermath) while he was in office remains almost if not exactly the same as when the problem initially began (Meyer A9). The wealth gap continues to target minorities and is affecting our communities at an alarming rate, however, many attempts have been made to reduce its existence but the factors of income inequality, unemployment rates and discrimination before and after our recent 2007 recession prevents our country from eliminating such a toxic problem.
Americans today live in a distinctly unequal society. Inequality is now wider than it used to be in the last century, and the division in income, wages, and wealth are broader than they are in other developed economies of the world. Wealth inequality is the imbalance of wealth or income within a society, and it is one of the most vital economic challenge the US is facing today because the distribution of wealth is more dispersed, making the inequality in wealth distribution at its highest. While the matter has been discussed for many years, the actual income disparity in the U.S. has heightened and is now verging on an extreme gap that portends to impede long-term economic growth. The huge gap between the wealthy and poor is squeezing the U.S. economy, the wealth gap threatens economic growth by diminishing social mobility and producing a less-educated workforce who are not able to compete in the global economy. unrestrained level of income inequality causes political pressures, it discourages trade, investment, and hiring. The present level of income inequality in the U.S. is shrinking GDP growth, and the world's largest economy is struggling to recover from the Great Recession.
Race, gender, and social class has several implications in the United States and how it shapes policy and perceptions of those who live in poverty. Current welfare systems are not perfect, and capitalistic policies do not work as intended to solve income inequalities. Given this, we will discuss social inequalities and capitalism, the welfare system, and propose two policies that solves welfare, and social and income inequalities.
The equitable wealth disproportion between African Americans and Whites is still on the rise. Researchers have identified systematic barriers affecting the ability for African Americans to accumulate wealth. In addition, researchers indicate several possible factors such as, less intergenerational inheritance, higher unemployment and lower incomes (Desilver, D, 2013). Impoverished generations have been unable to escape their restricted economic condition. Whites have gained an economic opportunity for every unfavorable condition that has impeded African Americans economic opportunity over time forging grounds for economic disparity. Because of unfavorable conditions due to the effects of slavery, generations of African Americans have had to bear racism and inequality. According to Pew Research the median household income of a family of three in 2011 was $39, 760 for African Americans in whereas White American Family median household income is $67, 175 a household income difference of $27, 000 (Morin, R
This first lecture gave us a close look into the unequal share of wealth and the factors that determine the wealth of individuals in the American society. One of the first factors that affect immensely the inequality in America is the obsessiveness of wanting to classify people and make them mark a box for their gender, race and class. Where men and whites have more privileges than any other person and are not only paid higher, but would most likely spend less time in prison for committing the same crime as an African American. The United states is so unequal that the top 1% of the population has 38.1% of the wealth and the bottom 40% which is a little less than half of the people living in America only have 0.2% of the wealth. And as if that statistic alone was not scary enough, we learn in this
There may be some blacks or minorities who remain poor because of their personal characteristics, but the majority of poor blacks are not different from others in motivations and aspirations. In fact, many poor people work incredibly hard at low paying jobs in order to barely get by. The most important causes of poverty lie in the power relations of society, and not the cultural characteristics of the poor individuals. The experiences of poverty have an impact on an individual's disposition and psychological state. Poverty could cause an individual to behave in particular ways, but the main difference between the poor and the rest of society is the opportunities and circumstances the individual’s encounter. It is not their personalities, attributes or values. Blacks continue to be discriminated against in employment and housing, which only contributes to poverty. The majority of African Americans are not poor because they choose not to work, but are poor because of the continuous discrimination from the dominant white race. Poor black Americans should face the same political, economic, and housing conditions as poor white Americans, but this is not the case. Because of continuing discrimination, poor black families do not live in integrated neighborhoods with comparable white families. In addition,
Wealth inequality is already shaping American politics and society, and has the dangerous potential to be the defining problem of the upcoming generation. A sizable cause for wealth inequality in America is a dire lack of
The comparison between rich and poor people is a topic with an enormous gap. The bridge between the two is longer than most see it, and is increasing steadily. Michael Sandel wrote a book discussing his opposition to the market society in the United States. The focus of Sandel’s book lies within the title, What Money Can’t Buy. He believes that everything seems to be for sale and that we are a society that revolves around the idea of every person for themselves. Sandel also states that inequality is rising faster than ever. Even though everything is for sale in this day and age, that does not mean everyone is able to purchase whatever they want. Inequality comes in many forms like race, gender and age. Income inequality affects
Being African American, as well as growing up in a State where only 1.3 percent of the population resembles yourself is difficult. I was born in Chicago, Illinois, and adopted to my parents who took me to Utah days later. As the only African American in my grade I have had to go through personal struggles in my life that many of my friends will never experience. I always knew that there would be those who would not accept me on the simple basis of my looks, but I did not know how much internal agony these people can cause. Getting called a “nigger” on your first day of high of school causes immediate uneasiness, and self-consciousness. I was called that word as well as many others daily. Slowly, but noticeably; I developed an anxiety disorder.
Economically, there is a deep seeded gap between African Americans and Caucasians in modern era. Michael Genovese argues that “in the United States, corruption and reform more often exact their costs in the form of reduced competition in both politics and the economy” (14). It is about reducing competition, or ,in other words, reducing the amount of economic opportunity to grow one’s wealth. Through slavery and segregation, the African American community had no ability to grow as they were not only physically but economically as well. This idea of corruption reducing competition can be seen in the economic gap that is shown between African Americans and Caucasians.Taking a look at this statistic that was found in “The Racial Wealth Gap” a Forbes article by Laura Shin, “the median white household had $111,146 in wealth holdings in 2011, compared to $7,113 for the median black household and $8,348 for the median Latino household”. Oppression of African Americans can not be the sole reason for this disparaging difference, but perceptions of African Americans can definitely be a factor to not allow the same opportunities as others, reducing the likelihood gaining individual wealth. Through these statistics, the oppression of the past is highly likely to be a key factor in the maltreatment and disproportionate distribution of wealth in regards to African Americans. The attitudes that have been pasted
Another premise in this review focuses on the significant divergences of opinions about the plight of the African American’s situation here in America. Some scholars are asking, how has this new pattern of inequality for the African American emerged? Many scholars point to the decline of middle level jobs (Harrison & Bluestone 1988), the redistribution of manufacturing jobs away from large cities like Chicago and Detroit, where many jobless blacks live (Sassen 1988), and the rise of earnings inequality among workers of all races (Danziger & Gottschalk 1993) as causes. One manifestation of these changes may be that gains in earnings have been offset by a growing racial disparity in unemployment between black and white men (Moss & Tilly 1991).
Even though black people have descendants who suffered much more inequality issues than they have faced nowadays, they still have to deal with this historical problem in different ways. The wealth gap between whites and blacks is huge, “every extra dollar of income earned by whites generates $5.19 in new wealth over 25 years while another dollar of income for a black family adds a mere 69 cents to its bottom line (Starkman)”. These numbers show us that we still live in a segregated
The somewhat controversial issue of wealth disparity is, why there is such a huge economic disparity in the class system and how can it be dealt with. The reality of redundantly confirming the vivid difference among classes with regards to economic wealth would be an understatement. First and foremost, the US is a combination of