Vulnerability is a source of anxiety and fear for most people, as it indicates their lack of security in some aspects. As mentioned by the lawyer Gary Haugen, a high risk of exposure to violence, “the Locust effect” of it, scares lower-class people because they lack the means to defend themselves (“The hidden reason for poverty the world needs to address now,” 2015). Thus, a variety of factors connect to create conditions for the propagation of impoverishment and the complicatedness of social class as a multifaceted matter.
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Capitalistic society may create the possibility of everyone achieving some measure of success, making people’s characteristics unrelated to poverty. Thus, the situational independence of people from their environment helps create prerequisites for happiness. However, coincidentally, people from more impoverished backgrounds “may become entrenched in the lifestyle that often leads to and reinforces incarceration, exposure to law enforcement, poor health outcomes, and homelessness,” taking away their means of success (Wages, 2015, p. 25).
Because of a lack of control over their life, which stems from decreased autonomy and security, people are put in a disadvantageous position based on their environment and inherent characteristics, which they cannot control (“The hidden reason for poverty the world needs to address now,” 2015). Therefore, substantial detrimental circumstances that prevent people from managing even little aspects of their lives create the prerequisites for class stratification.
Classism, as the demonstration of a discriminatory attitude towards those of different social standings, furthers dire conditions for those dependent on their environment when those, who may change things instead adopt a detached approach. Without the ability to rely on a support structure, people may become more entrenched in their circumstances. Thus, independence from one’s surroundings or rather the ability to use them to one’s advantage becomes a crucial prerequisite to escaping poverty, which, however, is not always possible. Therefore, reducing the negative effect of discriminatory practices becomes possible through an inclusive community approach.
Wages, M. (2015). Culture, poverty, and education: What’s happening in today’s schools? Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.