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Social Inequality

Essay by   •  November 15, 2010  •  1,328 Words (6 Pages)  •  1,564 Views

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Alexander Hamilton once wrote "After an unequivocal experience of the inefficacy of the subsisting federal government, you are called upon to deliberate on a new constitution for the United States of America." This trumpeting sentiment was the first sentence in succession of simple essays that changed the face of America. This collection was created by a group of unordinary unsatisfied citizens whose raw determination and desire for a better existence persisted beyond their surrounding tyrannical landscape and carved the path of diplomacy which has lead us to where we stand today. Thankfully, Hamilton and his cohorts have long since deceased and have been mercifully spared from the sad state of affairs to which we now belong. So where are today's unordinary unsatisfied citizens willing to stand up and fight for a belief in a better America and what will be our call to arms?

Well sound the trumpets. The federal governments continuing disregard for the overwhelming majority of its citizens is becoming more apparent each day. The incessant suffering of the working class and the abysmal excuse for an educational system is not only ignored but antagonized with rudimentary policies and make-shift solutions. The outlandishly uneven distribution of wealth in this country as well as the incessant pattern of social stratification is not only a serious cause for concern but entirely antithetical to the very American dream that we are so intent on sustaining. A sustenance that was historically developed by the manipulation of poverty and that which continues to be carried on the backs of the "subordinate" class today; held together by the ever prevalent structured inequality.

This socially supported inequality has been a plague on this nation and has run rampant for far too long. The top 20% of the population have complete control over nearly half of the wealth of the entire country. Compare that with the bottom 20% which have sliding grip on a mere 4% of everything there is to have. This massive gap in distribution is not only ever-widening it is doing so irreversibly. The ability to maneuver the class system of the United States is nearly nonexistent today. The access to vertical mobility is hindered by obstacles that are nearly impossible to overcome; such as government supported capitalism and inherent inequality. Those who are responsible for today's socio-economic structure should be the first to stand up and defend its future progress by reconstructing its methods of production.

However, that is not the case. Multi-Billion dollar corporations such as Mcdonalds have taken advantage of the situation instead of attempting to alleviate it. Large companies prey on the working class for increased profit at minimal cost to the consumer; minimal, unless you take into consideration the quality of life of the people who are working behind the scenes.

People like Carlos Vincente, Lorenzo Marin or Henry Wolf. All were part of late-night cleaning crews at meatpacking plants; a job wrought with safety issues all easily remedied yet continue to function without resolve. All in charge of keeping the nations food supply fit for consumption. All were considered to be disposable workers due to their lack of literacy and finances. All died needlessly at the hands of profit margins and lack of community outrage: A community that should be outraged and an outrage that should change the community. The community is who suffers. It is us; it is our family it is our friends and neighbors, it is the strangers who make life a little easier, it is the individuals who allow society to function without incidence who have succumb to this societal decay.

46% of people living in poverty are white. Latinos and African Americans are three times more likely to live in poverty. Women account for two-thirds of the poor. Does this mean that they are incapable of achieving the same financial success as their counterparts and have not devoted the proper means to achieve success? This sentiment is an obvious implication of the human capital theory; the means by which order theorist explain such grand discrepancy in equality between males and females and may also be applied to matters of race. This argument is aligned with social Darwinism; survival of the fittest. The notion that the poor are biologically unfit to compete therefore are to blame for their own "misfortune." This theory does not take into account many important factors such as the impact of education, environment and social effects that can have grave consequences on an individuals "fitness." The conflict perspective would define this as a classic case of statistical discrimination; the discriminatory treatment of an entire class of people based

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