The social issue being discussed in the article, The Roots of the Widening Racial Wealth Gap: Explaining the Black-White Economic Divide, is the wealth inequality between white people and black people. According to the article the inequality gap between whites and blacks has been growing steadily for the past 25 years (Shapiro, February 2013). The data used in this article was gathered by studying the same families for a 25 year period and also by the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSDI).
The article states five major factors that have been the cause of the increasing wealth gap: years of homeownership, education, income, unemployment and financial support/inheritance (Shapiro, February 2013).
Years of homeownership is important because the longer you have owned your home the more equity you have in your home allowing for easier loans and also because the longer you have owned it the closer you are to paying it off. Statistically African Americans are unable to own homes until later in life than white Americans. When the housing market crashed the average black person was hit harder and their homes were foreclosed on sooner than whites because they did not have the equity in their homes and were unable to secure loans.
Education is important in the securing better jobs. According to the article African Americans have less access to quality education then their white counter parts (Shapiro, February 2013). This affects the black income level which is also a contributing factor to the wealth gap.
The article states that black people are more likely to get fired and become unemployed then their white coworkers, this leads to unstable work environments and income (Shapiro, February 2013).
African Americans are also less likely to get financial assistance and inheritance from family because statistically their family does not have the wealth to do that (Shapiro, February 2013).
The major fixes according to the article are making the housing market more fair and reforming education to make sure all people no matter the color get an equal chance. Without coming out and stating it boldly the article explains the need to remove racism from our schools and our workplaces.
I would agree that removing racism is the only way to close the gap. Not only white against black racism but also black against white and black against black. I have live, worked and supervised people of many colors all over the world. In my experience a lot of the time black people (especially the younger generation) in American hold themselves back. They do this by accusing every white person of racism and it becomes a “the boy who cried wolf” situation. As a supervisor if every time I ask a black person to take the trash out I get accused of being racist, how can I in good conscience say that that person is ready for a promotion when I do not even know if they are capable of a small task like removing a full bag from a can and replacing it with an empty bag. Through all my travels I have only witnessed this type of behavior here in the states.
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