Does Inequality Matter?

MidTerm 1 Possible Questions. Question 3: 3. Does inequality matter? Imagine that you are asked to write an editorial for the New York Times on this general topic. What might you say? What empirical evidence might you use to support your claims? Liberals believe different answers to this question than conservatives l. Liberals believe A. It is unjust. Millions of children go to sleep hungry in the world’s richest nation – the U. S. B. Society unfairly says poor are lazy and deserve to be poor. How can children deserve to be poor?

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II. Conservatives believe A. Poor are lazy and do not want to work hard. B. Inequality gives the poor a reason to work harder C. If you take away their reason to work harder, poor will continue to be lazy. Inequality does matter because it harms society Ill. A. Inequality makes a society resentful and in conflict. Poor hate rich, rich hate poor. Inequality makes society not trust each other Wilkinson & Pickett 2010 a. B. Wilkinson & Pickett study compared US which has high inequality rate with other entries, especially Scandinavia which has low inequality b.

Study showed Americans do not trust each other, but Swedish do trust each other C. Inequality results in social problems Wilkinson & Picket, 2010: When comparing nations with high inequality to countries with low inequality, the countries with the high inequality have a. More mental illness b. More addictions to drugs and alcohol c. More teenage pregnancies d. More murders e. More people in prison D. Inequality hurts democracy Mark Franklin study in 2001 a. With a lot of inequality, the rich have much more power than the poor. B. Rich get better police protection, better schools in suburbs, etc. . Rich candidates for office get elected easily – we have many rich leaders, very few poor leaders d. Results in apathy and high voting rates. Voting is essential for democracy Inequality DEFINITELY does matter. Societies with high levels on income inequality have much more conflict and lack of trust among the people, and have many more social ills. Liberals believe that income inequality is not fair, that Just because a person is born ICC doesn’t mean they should have a great life while a child who is born into poverty will have a bad life.

In America, millions of children go to sleep hungry every night because they are poor. That is not fair. Conservatives believe that inequality only happens because the poor are lazy and do not work as hard as the rich. If we got rid of the inequality, the poor would have no motive to work harder and make more money. However, when there is EXTREME inequality, like there is in America, there are lots of social problems that result. A study by Wilkinson & Pickett in 2010 compared nations and found that the countries with the most inequality have the most social problems.

People who live in countries with high inequality do not trust each other, and the poor hate and resent the rich while the rich think the poor are lazy and looking for free handouts. Once the two groups do not trust each other, then problems in society do not get solved and instead get worse. Nations which have high rates of inequality, also have high rates of: Mental Illness Teenage Pregnancy Drug & Alcohol Addiction Murders People in Prison Those kinds of social ills happen when a country is not working together and instead is divided and mistrust each other.

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