The National Employment Law Project found in a study that lower and mid-wage occupations have been hurt the deepest, as wages sunk between 2009 and 2012. The table below shows the percentage change in many low-wage jobs. While wages for all workers in these lower-wage jobs have decreased, it seems these effects take place disproportionately when it comes to women in the workforce – as many are jobs in service. To put a number, two-thirds of minimum wage workers are women. Contrariwise, there was job growth in particular low-wage sectors (like retail and service) for women.
When comparing women’s wages to men’s, jobs in male-dominated sectors offer higher wages. Thus, to an extent, it may seem fair to speculate that the pay gap between men and women may be due to working in different jobs as opposed to gender discrimination, as thinks blogger Matt Vespa (Huffington Post). However, the Institute for Women’s Policy Research compared women and men’s salaries and found that there are still discrepancies between job salaries.
Regardless of the evidence or speculations, there are actions that the workforce and people should incorporate in order to lessen the gender pay-gap. For starters, the minimum wage could be raised – this in turn could lessen the gap between lower-wage workers. All in all, it is expected that women’s wages will equal men’s by the year 2056, and I feel much could be done to speed up the process (Huffington Post).
The recent case that has been on everyone’s mind and all over the media is the Trayvon Martin case. Even if you really have no in depth idea of what happened, many at least know a young black man was shot by an older white man. Recently, we were discussing how there is inequality amongst men and women and their safety. Below are some pictures of 2 black women who did not shoot anyone but were sentenced to jail time and George Zimmerman who shot a young man and walked away out of the courthouse a free man. Does this make any sense to anyone? Ever since the abolition of slavery, we have overtly and covertly made it white America’s mission to do what we can to ensure that non-whites are still treated unequally and unfairly. Because of this, we have not only blatantly said that we don’t like equality, but we have made sure that the next generation of non-whites are trapped in the ghettos of the country with limited possibilities or chances of upward mobility furthering the gap between not just the rich and poor, but of the whites and non-whites perpetuating the culture of poverty ideology so many people are found of.
This article sums up the importance of behavior change to achieve success instead of simply changing the location. It reiterates that more minorities, or those who are not white, are unemployed and live in poverty compared to whites. Then, it further states that because many minorities live in poverty, many students lack a good quality education system, drop out, and have an overall achieve less learning. The first step in education is preschool. However, many Hispanics do not send their child to preschool. President Obama has proposed to raise taxes on cigarettes to fund those children far below the poverty line to send them to preschool. However, this proposal will not be addressed because the government is cutting down spending. Not only are minorities concerned about proper education, but also they are concerned about proper health care. Those who are not healthy are not able to attend class regularly, which can affect their longterm education.
While these are issues that have been repeated, they still should be given attention. The article stresses that these children, who could be getting a better educations and who could have better health, are those who will be affecting the economy later. They have the potential to become efficient workers in the economy; however, without a proper education and health, their chances are much more slim. Obama has addresses these issues, yet there is still some ways to go!
The racial structure of the prison population in the United States is very different from the population as a whole. If people are worried about inequality in America today, I think this deserves more attention and discussion. Racial inequality in the criminal justice system gets ignored because it doesn’t affect most people. In 2010 over 1.6 million people where in state and federal prisons within the United States. So 497 out of every 100,000 Americans were in jail, about half of 1 percent, less than 1 percent. It doesn’t seem very large, but when it comes to separate that population by race we recognize that the personal effects of criminal justice system are very unequally shared throughout our society. Whites make up 4 percent of the total population but only 31 percent of the incarcerated population. Blacks represent 14 percent of society but 36 percent of the prison population. Hispanics are 16 percent of American but 24 percent of the American prison population. Less than 1 in 100 Americans are currently in jail, but for some races, genders, and age groups, that ratio is a lot larger. For example, if you’re young, black and male, it’s closer to about one in four. That means you’d have a higher probability of going to jail than of getting married or going to college, just as we read in the article of Western et al. These results are unequal and problematic, as poor black communities lack so many of their members. But what can be done? The causes of this trend are indeed complicated, but there is reason to suggest that part of the blame is our criminal justice system itself. In the ways police officers enforce laws, in the ways that laws are written and prosecuted, and more. In many cases it is not overt racism by individual actors; many police officers prosecutors and judges are undoubtedly trying to be unfair and trying to do the right thing. But economics can explain how unequal enforcement of the criminal law happens anyways. The formal laws surrounding drug prohibition, for example, are written as if to be colored blind, but people with different levels of wealth face different costs and benefits to participating in the drug trade. Different groups consume different drugs at different rates, and lastly, those groups are politically represented in very different quantities. Thus they are arrested and incarcerated at very different rates states Daniel Amico.
In this video, the People in charge state that they do not choose their inmates, their inmates chose them. They say that the inmate’s actions are what have them incarcerated. This video gives a brief description of some rates of prisoner’s by race from different states because they claim that racial inequality varies by state. Everyone has different laws. What may not be legal in California may be legal in Florida. Racial inequality will never end in the United States stated one of the spokesman in the video. Racial inequality is a broad variable and only one as an individual can determine that because the government is run by the people.
By: Jocelyn Zamora
When thinking about class inequality I think about the value of each of work and the money that is being distributed to each job. When thinking about the wealthy one thinks of CEOs, athletes, artists, and people with power. However, how is it that the value movie stars and musicians is greater than the work that contributes to our society like the job of a teacher and even our leaders. One thing that comes to mind is power and the influence these artist have not only nation wide but worldwide. Could it be that the type of influence they have determine the wealth they earn. Movie stars and artist influence what is strived for which is good looks, money and fame. The get paid more because we contribute to their wealth like buying the cds, movies, or going to their concerts. The president made about 600,000 thousands dollars while Justin Bieber made about 58 million dollars. It just shows the priorities of people and how citizens are contributers for the rich to get richer. Im not saying to not support you’re favorite artist just to be conscious of where your money is going.
As the author suggests in this article, there is a war waging against inequality between the supreme court ruling of the patent of synthetic DNA. In summary, “good health” and other biological innovations can now be privately owned. Those who can patent and own the rights have real world implications. As suggested in the article, gene analysis can be a cheap test, however through privatization and patents, those tests can be charged a cost far higher due to corporate profits. These tests aren’t more special or use different techniques, but cost more simply because the companys can. This not only hurts those general public but also the industry as well. By ruling for the privatization of synthetic DNA, there is a drastic change in its research as well. It’ll be more difficult for a small company to fight against giant corporations with patents. Instead of instilling the idea of creating health and gene innovations, the majority of the research and products produced are meant for profit. Its scary to think how the improvement of health is mainly dictated by the amount of wealth one may acquire through it. This not only shows how people are exploited but how easily things can get out of hand. The drug industry argues that without it, there will be no incentive for research, which may be true. But if the economic value beats out the moral values, than itll only perpetuate more inequality in the near future. “The lives of the poor are sacrificed at the alter of corporate profit.” As found in class, the experience of such changes are ground breaking not only in america but worldwide. Thus the struggle continues for equality in not only living, but also within the corporate and business world. This only only affects the economy but society as well. Hopefully, if optimistic, there may be other ways the court can help control the rights and values to better contribute to society
In this article, Brukhauser, a professor of public policy at Cornell analyses the preconceived notion of income inequality and hopes to look at to shed more light on how not only its measure but how to deal with it as well. By definition, income is “a post-tax, post-transfer, size-adjusted household income including the ex-ante value of in-kind health insurance benefits,” which revealed how inequality was either increasing or decreasing between the upper, middle and poor classes. As we discussed in class and other readings on intersectionality, there are more than one facet play into how inequality in wealth is adjusted and measured. In some cases, the general household income doesn’t do adequate justice in fulfilling basic and social needs. As Burkhauser hopes to suggest, the debate over income should be redefined as “the yearly accrued capital gains to measure yearly changes in wealth.” This way it attempts to measure the increase in taxpayer assets year by year and see that as income. Assets like ownership of property, thus making spikes in sales occur when its sold, but over the yearly gains. Those who own houses would see changes in their income if applied, as their home, being one large asset, would apply to their income analysis. So even if their income goes up, their living conditions stay the same. This is a whole idea of identifying inequality and wealth, but its necessary and sometimes refreshing to look beyond what is normally measured and see from an outside perspective other areas in which inequality and/or wealth can be analyzed. I do agree that there should be more measures in which income, wealth, and even how taxes are measured to families or individuals, but Burkhauser suggestion requires much more assumptions than would be beneficial in application. Also, his analysis as suggested down below reveals that income growth is far less extreme between the differences of wealth.
However, in the current state of how income is adjusted and analyzed, it could prove to be important to see it another way. As intersectionality would try to apply, there are more than just class and wealth involved. Resources, children resources, the market, competition, etc. are all things that are factors that have little data in comparison to inequality in wealth and income. Quality of life in living can be measured in so many ways, its refreshing to see how burkhauser is trying to see it more than what is said to be known. Its these steps of theory and analysis that I think will help us understand inequality and wealth a little more.
Here is what is normally understood as income growth:
And here is what Burkhauser suggests with his definition of income: