The Rich Are Different: They’re Luckier | The New Republic


What’s more, it is demonstrably not the case that income levels simply reflect aptitude and effort. Now, obviously being from a richer family affords all sorts of advantages, including physical, emotional, and cultural development. But factor all that out of the equation and assume that it’s just fair for all those things to translate into higher academic performance and higher earnings.

Even assuming that, there are massive advantages inherent simply in being born rich (and disadvantages in being poor.) My favorite example, simply because it’s so dramatic, is that a child born into the lowest-earning quintile who manages to attain a college degree is less likely to be in the highest-earning quintile than a child born into the top quintile who does not attain a college degree. This is all the more remarkable when you consider that making it to, and through, college is far harder for poor kids than rich kids even at a given level of aptitude. (Two thirds of the kids with average math scores and low-income parents do not attend college, while almost two-thirds of high-income kids with average math scores do.)

via The Rich Are Different: They’re Luckier | The New Republic.

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One response to “The Rich Are Different: They’re Luckier | The New Republic

  1. renaissanceguy

    The problem with these statistics is that they only show what is, not what could be or should be. My family rose from poor to middle class during my childhood. Their poverty drove them to work hard and better themselves. We went to the library weekly, our parents made sure we did our homework and checked it over, they demanded that we get the best grades that we were capable of.

    My academic scholarship and working summers is what allowed me to pay for college. I knew that the way up for me was in education, thanks to my parents.

    That’s what all kids from poor families could do, if they want to. It’s what they should do if they are not content to stay poor.

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