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Poverty in America Essay

Essay on Poverty in America

❶It is organized in ways that allow a small elite to control most of the capital — factories, machinery, tools — used to produce wealth.

Blaming the recent economic crisis

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Poverty: A multifaceted issue
Causes of Poverty in America

These similarities, however, end there. This becomes quite apparent especially when it comes to hours worked and their compensation. Unfortunately there are some that work as many hours and are paid less. Since , there has been a federal law requiring employers to pay their employees a minimum wage. It was 25 cents. Iceland, There are social programs that are set up to help people in this predicament; however, it does not help them get out of the circumstance. The aid programs are set up to get the poor by on a day to day basis and are not set up to improve their social mobility.

There should be money spent on programs that allow those in poverty to improve their education and careers. What makes people poor? Is it lack of opportunities? Is it lack of education and skills training? Is racism and sexism? There are a wide variety of opinions on why people are poor. There is a sense of ignorance when bringing to attention the issue to those unaffected. Those that are unaffected could help but they do not know which way will help not only with the poor today but to decrease the poverty in the future.

What is surprising is that a lack of education opportunities is often mentioned as reasons for poverty. According to the US department of education, 9.

This is ironic considering that public high school is available to all. It seems creating jobs is the consensus and it makes sense especially when you look at the unemployment rate. Nationally the unemployment rate is 6. What is the reason for this number? The loss of non government jobs, mainly in the manufacturing sector. This had a domino effect to other businesses like retail and construction.

Ross, We have a long way before we are in a depression. In the unemployment rate was the highest at Poverty in America has been rapidly growing in the past decade because of poor political decisions. There is an extreme divide between the social classes in America. GAO, Lack of money is not the reason for the extreme poverty rates in America, greed is. There is definitely enough money to go around the US multiple times but no one wants to help those in need.

There is this sense of survival of the fittest that is an ongoing theme when looking into poverty here. America is deeply divided. We can agree that poverty is more pervasive among minorities, children, female-headed families and people with less education. It has been shown through true statistics that there is a definite inequality between race and class when dealing with poverty in America. But why is American poverty still colored in the twenty-fifth century?

Neighborhoods that are organized around work where significant percentage of the adults is working are significantly different from neighborhoods that are jobless, which are neighborhoods that include a significant percentage of people that are not working.

Jobless neighborhoods are a lot more dangerous because they create and breed other problems like crime, gang formation, and drug trafficking.

It seems that once one person is in poverty, it becomes a vicious cycle and no one is willing to do anything to help. There are 50 million Americans without health insurance.

Iceland, This does not help our problem with poverty. America is a country that deals with problems as they come and never with preventing them. Those that are born into a poor family almost always end up the head of a poor family.

This fact has shaped America and has almost made it impossible for those that are born into less fortunate homes. The facts are as stands; if a person was to walk down the streets in any which neighborhood in America, 1 out of every 6 people passed could be living in poverty. This issue is rarely talked about for these outstanding numbers. Each year the number of poverty in America goes up. There are becoming only two classes; a lower class and a higher class. Bottom line; America needs to reverse the cycle.

Through education and assistance programs, America will be able to close the gap between the two classes. Recent unemployment rates have dropped slightly and the economy is showing some signs of growth but only some Americans are gaining from it.

Almost a million American children sometimes go hungry and tent cities are springing up across the country. While both sides blame each other, America cannot fully admit their poverty, and are certainly not dealing with it.

Iceland, JohnPoverty in America: A Handbook, with a Preface. University of California Press, This book allowed me to understand better poverty in America. It focuses on early views of poverty in America and where the poverty in America originated.

This book also describes the causes and characteristics of poverty as well as why poverty remains high in America. I chose this book so that I would have a timeline of poverty from the beginning as well as poverty now. I would be able to compare and contrast the social and economical times between then and now.

I will compare the different ethnicities in America and compare the different ways that they have been affected by poverty over the years. These kinds of decisions are a normal consequence of how capitalism operates as a system, paths of least resistance that managers and investors are rewarded for following.

But the decisions also have terrible effects on tens of millions of people and their families and communities. Even having a full-time job is no guarantee of a decent living, which is why so many families depend on the earnings of two or more adults just to make ends meet.

All of this is made possible by the simple fact that in a capitalist system most people neither own nor control any means of producing a living without working for someone else. To these social factors we can add others.

A high divorce rate, for example, results in large numbers of single-parent families who have a hard time depending on a single adult for both childcare and a living income. The centuries-old legacy of racism in the United States continues to hobble millions of people through poor education, isolation in urban ghettos, prejudice, discrimination, and the disappearance of industrial jobs that, while requiring relatively little formal education, nonetheless once paid a decent wage.

These were the jobs that enabled many generations of white European immigrants to climb out of poverty, but which are now unavailable to the masses of urban poor. Clearly, patterns of widespread poverty are inevitable in an economic system that sets the terms for how wealth is produced and distributed.

But public debate about poverty and policies to deal with it focus almost entirely on the latter with almost nothing to say about the former. Murray sees the world as a merry-go-round. Instead, Murray argues, poverty is caused by failures of individual initiative and effort. It would leave the working-aged person with no recourse whatsoever except the job market, family members, friends, and public or private locally funded services. The confusion lies in how we think about individuals and society, and about poverty as an individual condition and as a social problem.

On the one hand, we can ask how individuals are sorted into different social class categories, what characteristics best predict who will get the best jobs and earn the most.

There is certainly a lot of truth in this advice, and it gets to the issue of how people choose to participate in the system as it is. Sociologically, however, it focuses on only one part of the equation by leaving out the system itself. In other words, it ignores the fact that social life is shaped both by the nature of systems and how people participate, by the forest and the trees.

Changing how individuals participate may affect outcomes for some. As odd as this may seem, however, this has relatively little to do with the larger question of why widespread poverty exists at all as a social phenomenon. Imagine for a moment that income is distributed according to the results of a footrace. All of the income in the United States for each year is put into a giant pool and we hold a race to determine who gets what.

The fastest fifth of the population gets 48 percent of the income to divide up, the next fastest fifth splits 23 percent, the next fastest fifth gets 15 percent, the next fifth 10 percent, and the slowest fifth divides 4 percent. The result would be an unequal distribution of income, with each person in the fastest fifth getting nine times as much money as each person in the slowest fifth, which is what the actual distribution of income in the United States looks like.

But to see why some fifth of the population must be poor no matter how fast people run, all we have to do is look at the system itself. It uses unbridled competition to determine not only who gets fancy cars and nice houses, but who gets to eat or has a place to live or access to health care.

It distributes income and wealth in ways that promote increasing concentrations among those who already have the most. But there has to be a bottom fifth so long as the system is organized as it is. To do that, we have to change the system along with how people participate in it. There would still be inequality, but the fastest fifth would get only 1. People can argue about whether chronic widespread poverty is morally acceptable or what an acceptable level of inequality might look like.

But if we want to understand where poverty comes from, what makes it such a stubborn feature of social life, we have to begin with the simple sociological fact that patterns of inequality result as much from how social systems are organized as they do from how individuals participate in them.

But antipoverty programs are not organized around a sociological understanding of how systems produce poverty in the first place. As a result, they focus almost entirely on changing individuals and not systems, and use the resources of government and other systems to make it happen. The easiest way to see this is to look at the antipoverty programs themselves. They come in two main varieties. The first holds individuals responsible by assuming that financial success is solely a matter of individual qualifications and behavior.

We get people to run faster by providing training and motivation. The system itself, however, including the huge gap between the wealthy and everyone else and the steady proportion of people living in poverty, stays much the same.


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Issues about poverty is not stressed enough by the media to keep America informed on what the country is going through with this problem. Poverty in America is being blamed on the system and the individual affected.

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- Poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean It is well known fact that poverty is an ongoing battle in Latin America and The Caribbean. According to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean .

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Poverty is the lack of money, need or scarcity. In America this definition applies to over Poverty is not something that has just recently became an issue, it has been around for many of years. For many people in America to be in poverty means that they live from paycheck to paycheck. In most 3/5(12). Welfare Causes Poverty in America Essay - There seems to be an increase in poverty in the United States and there are so many theories behind why this might be a problem. It seems as if Society as a whole wants to blame this social “condition” on Society itself.

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Thesis Statement: Poverty in America The United State of America, a huge and democratic country, so wealthy and strong, and consumes almost all of the North America within its borders. Yet, poverty is one of the most prevalent and persistent social problems within the United States. Oct 15,  · about poverty’s history in America and its definition, the causes/reasons of poverty, the effects of poverty on America, and the salaries of people in poverty. Poverty is the state or condition of having little to no money or goods.