Government uses the relationship between social class (lower, middle, and upper) to suggest that society is equally just. Growing up in the city, I could witness stereotypical views of low income families. I could witness people being discriminated because they didnt have nice suits or dresses, and their vocabulary was not equal to or better than the person they were talking to. Sometimes the idea of social success puts too much pressure on people so they sometimes forget their morals and values.
The problem is all they want to do is to reach new social status because that is what society has led them to believe and what society expects of them. My grandfather often cited a southern saying that reads as follows: Money is the root of all evil. Through the years I often wondered if he was correct. Society describes lower class as government assisted or a troublesome group of people. Hanratty and Meditz stated that [i]n contrast, the masses were composed of the illiterate and the impoverished who lived on the margin of subsistence and possessed little or no security, skill, or stable employment.
I disagree with Hanratty and Meditz statement: most lower class people do have work-related skills and are literate. In a lower class neighborhood at a local barber shop there are always conversations about how the upper class is destroying the lower class, and why lower class people cannot integrate into the mainstream society. Some would say that their major obstacle on the way to social success is fear or ability to adapt to change. Lower class is aware that they are labeled; however, they are determined to be a driving force in society.
The stereotype of a successful family implies that a husband and a wife have an income that allows them to live in a nice neighborhood. Society would classify that family as middle class. Samuelson writes that [c]ompounding the stress, the price of entry into the middle class is always rising. The more we can have, the more we must have. Keeping up with the Joneses is the curse of our advances and ambitions (19). The problem with middle class and the problem of trying to belong there is that the upper class considers itself middle class at times.
It forces hard-working middle class people to work harder, often taking on two jobs to maintain their social status. Some upper class people continue to downplay their status as middle class. That would put pressure on truly middle class people to stay (or even move up) in the social status. Expectation of what society requires of the middle class often puts pressure on the middle class to advance. Being born into wealth has been the only way to integrate in the upper class. Today the upper class is comprised of a diverse group of people unlike years before when the rich just had to travel and throw socials.
The perception of upper class as seen on television is sometimes different from reality, as the rich have large amounts of money and can abuse their power. The rich are excuse from a lot of mishaps, while the middle and lower class would have not received the same treatment. Domhoff writes that [f]rom infancy through young adulthood, members of the upper class receive a distinctive education. This education begins early in life in preschools that frequently are attached to a neighborhood church of high social status.
Schooling continues during the elementary years at a local private school called a day school. Higher education will be obtained at one of a small number of heavily endowed private universities. Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Stanford head the list, followed by smaller Ivy League schools in the East and a handful of other small private schools in other parts of the country (24). The upper class continues to work hard on staying on top: they put pressure on themselves and their children to stimulate them to stay in the same social class.
What we as society fail to realize is that success comes from within. In every culture there are social problems that result from being in a certain situation. Everybody has their own definition of what success is; definitions of success range from being rich, driving a fancy car, and living in a big house to simply being in good health and having a stress-free life. I have read a lot of articles through the years on what it takes to be successful and I stil.