At first glance, I thought that people could succeed in their lives as long as they got into college and work hard in their career. But then, I discovered that society would not let you live as you want to since your destiny is decided upon you when you are born. When we are born, we have been divided by the social classes through our parents’ wealth and were brought up according to our social class. People that are born in upper social class would have economic privilege and are very financially stable, while people born in lower class would have to struggle financially and suffered from lack of education.
Since there are disadvantages for being in lower social class, obviously people would strive to achieve higher social class when they become adult in order to give their children better lives in the future. However, it was not easy as it seems for person of color to achieve that feat. Besides the division of social classes, there are also race inequality that needed to be overcome in order to achieve success in life. Attending college does not mean that it could change our social hierarchy. The reason of this situation is because the large gap of wages between white people and other races shown in the statistics done by Demos and Institute of Assets and Social Policy (IASP). In the “Asset Value of Whiteness” report, they have shown that “median white adult who attended college has 7.2 times more wealth than the median black adult who attended college and 3.9 times more wealth than the median Latino adult who attended college.” This report shown that the boundary of race could not be overcome even though they are on the same level of education.
This report has shown that the race inequality is one of the factors that people of color could not overcome the wealth boundary even though they are working hard in their education and career. They pointed out that the government should recognize this problem and create policies that would fix the structural inequalities. This report has proved that the wealth difference in races is not because of the result of individual’s achievements, but it could also because of the flaw in the society’s structure. In the class discussion on the other day, our instructor, Mrs. Hoagland made an anonymous survey on how much do the students’ family household made per year. It shocked me on how big is the range of the income that we have in the class, around $40,000 to $300,000 per year. This survey shows that this problem is not an illusion, but something that happens right in front of us.
by Nur Kamilia Abdul Rani