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Poverty in Our Nation

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Poverty In Our Nation

Although the United States is one of the richest countries in the world many of it's people sleep in the streets, dig through garbage cans to find food, and carry all that they own in this world on their backs or in shopping carts. These people are classified as the homeless. I believe that being brought up into a lower class, defines your social status in this country.

I believe it is largely because of social structures, namely networks. Individuals form networks or groups that tend to associate with those who are like them. Equity theory explains this by claiming that people are most satisfied with a relationship when the ratio between benefits and contributions is similar for both partners. This would assume that networks would exist between those within a specific class but not across classes. By forming associations with those of unfair status, the rich form a very supportive network and the poor form a network that can sympathize with their situation at best.

Networks are vital to class mobility in that they are critical in molding life chances, providing resources, and presenting options. The family forms a microstructure that produces both economic support and opportunities. The extent of economic support is primarily determined by the financial status of the family. The more wealthy one's family the greater amount of resources it has to assure that the basic needs of its members are fulfilled. This has a determining impact on children from a young age. Being born in a poor family significantly affects a child's necessity to obtain employment, working hours, future education, earnings, stress, and lifestyle choices. These factors combine to make class mobility difficult at best.

The dynamics of an individual's family significantly affect his/her life chances. Wealthy families are more than likely to be involved in a social network consisting of many other prominent, wealthy families. The ramifications of these associations, will affect all areas of an individual's life. Coming from a low-income family, people do not have the option to receive an education that would allow them to learn to overcome their genetic flaws and communicate effectively.

The structure of the educational system has a substantial effect on the lives of many who are in need. The educational structure does not afford the necessary training and development for those with genetic handicaps. The public school system frankly does not have adequate programs for those who need extensive amounts of help but cannot afford it. After high school or its equivalent, educational development is primarily on a volunteer basis and available only

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