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Inequality in the United States of America

Is America’s inequality as awful as we think it is? Many individuals in America are debating the subject of inequality back and forth. Some argue that inequity is a fast expanding issue that is dividing the wealthy from the poor. Other Americans, on the other hand, believe that we are developing and moving away from inequity( Otero and Gerardo, pg.52). However, we have a choice in how we see inequality, but we cannot deny that it exists as a fact of life in the modern world. When it comes to inequality, there has been debate in the past and will continue to be debate in the future as long as we do not address the issue. Since the beginning of the twentieth century, our country has changed. People with higher social standing are free to spend their money as they like, but others with lower social standing are actually suffering.

Functionalist argues that for a society to operate properly, class diversity must exist. Those at the top of a social hierarchy have a monopoly on the wishes of a community or civilization, and they exploit that monopoly to exert control over others in the hierarchy. It is said, for example, in the novel “Imagine a County” that low-income pupils are sent to inadequate and dismal schools on the basis of their race or economic status. Property taxes determine the size of public school budgets, enabling wealthier districts to spend more than poorer ones on educational expenses. When it comes to conflict theory, there are two distinct groups: the wealthy and the impoverished. Richer schools have well-stocked libraries, but poorer schools are fortunate in that they have access to current literature. As a result, there is conflict between the two “classes” and a sense of extreme injustice. These characteristics of society may contribute to social instability and inequality.

The rise in the Gini coefficient of wage income during the financial crisis, on the other hand, implies that the increasing uneven distribution of this source of income led to increased inequality. Government transfers have an essential role in decreasing inequality, particularly in the aftermath of the financial crisis. After the financial crisis, the equalizing effects of a 10% increase in these payments result in a 0.84 percent drop in the Gini of total income (Faricy and Christopher, pg.91). Among the several government disbursements, Social Security is the most equitably distributed. Retirement income, in addition to government handouts, diminishes overall equality. Total inequality is unequalized by interest and self-employment income. Interest income became more important during the financial crisis, and it has since become more important again. Since the financial crisis, the percentage of self-employment income has declined, and hence its contribution to total inequality has reduced.

Two notable recommendations for closing the income and wealth divides include raising the minimum wage and expanding access to education, particularly early childhood and postsecondary education, among other things. In a more progressive taxation system, higher earnings are subject to a higher rate of taxes than lower wages. According to some scholars and politicians, redistribution of income from the affluent to the poor will reduce inequality and enhance society. According to some, higher taxes would stifle economic expansion and technological innovation( Keister and Lisa, pg.67). Furthermore, despite the fact that some Democratic presidents have decreased taxes while others have raised them, Democrats prefer the former to the latter. The tax positions of the major political parties have grown increasingly aligned.

Work cited

Otero, Gerardo, et al. “The neoliberal diet and inequality in the United States.” Social Science & Medicine 142 (2015): 47-55.

Faricy, Christopher G. Welfare for the wealthy: Parties, social spending, and inequality in the United States. Cambridge University Press, 2015. 81-105

Keister, Lisa A., and Stephanie Moller. “Wealth inequality in the United States.” Annual Review of Sociology 26.1 (2000): 63-81.


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