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Poverty And Ethics Essay

972 words - 4 pages

Nicole Kellough

Poverty is a major issue in the United States of America. Furthermore, some critics have yet to acknowledge the effects that poverty as on the United States as a whole society. While some seem to be lavishly rich, others seem to be dirt poor. Poverty in the United States can be viewed in one of two ways; it can be viewed as a way for our society to get together and help each other out, or it can be seen as a way to keep some people socially and economically higher than others in terms of social class. Gloria Watkins wrote a piece titled Outlaw Culture: Resisting Representations in 1994 under the name of Bell Hooks, talked about her viewpoint of poverty. She states that ...view middle of the document...

Gloria made her most valid point when she pointed out that although we only acknowledge three social classes, which include the lower, middle and upper, in real life those three classes can be dived into four classes. She stated that the four classes were, “the poor, who were destitute; the working folks, who were poor because they made just enough to make ends meet; those who worked and had extra money; and the rich.” Traditionally the working class is not considered poor, however, when you live in a situation such as Gloria’s when middle class working people have to support such huge families, they often find themselves struggling and just making the bare minimum. Gloria stated that she, “rarely [though] of myself in relation to class,” that she, “mainly [though] about the world in terms of who has money to spend and who does not.” This seems like a very effective point because the world revolves about money, we need money to take care of the essential things that people need to survive in life. Its either you had the money to strive, live, and provide or you didn’t and you failed.

On the contrary, Gloria made a positive, valuable point about what values poverty can teach us, although there was an assumption that, “the poor were without values.” Gloria stated that she had, “been taught in a culture of poverty to be intelligent, honest, to work hard, and always to be a person of my word,…to stand up for what I believed was right, to be brave and courageous.” When people are born into wealth, they sometimes forget the common courtesies that we are supposed to have as human beings. The upper class relies on their money to get them through situations instead of using their intelligence and working hard...

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