Did you watch Oprah yesterday about social class?

United States
January 4, 2007 11:03am CST
This is a topic that fascinates me and so I recorded her show yesterday and watched it afterwards. Did you see it? What do you think about it? Is it true that the middle class is dissapearing and that it is harder now days to move up in class? I find this so hard to believe but i wanted to hear what you thought. It was really eye opening for me. Almost to the point that I want to take some drastic measures with my kids to make sure they are secure for the future and I dont mean monetarily but education wise. I think that the show yesterday will cause more fear than help people. I dont know...what do you think?
5 people like this
28 responses
@shellyrios (1215)
• United States
4 Jan 07
Yes, I think the middle class is dissipating and it's because they are in the middle. They don't make enough to live without worry and they don't make less to be eligible for government assistance. It's the cost of living that increases too much for the middle class to catch up with. I think education is key for our children as well for them to attain success in their generations and future......
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Jan 07
I agree with your comment. Most people who need help financially are middle class and need the help because of a crisis. That is another reason why the poor stay poor. With health care and the rise on prices to own a home, the middle class is just 2 paychecks away from living on the streets.
1 person likes this
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
5 Jan 07
i totally agree, my husband and i only generate one income because i have to watch the kids while he works since daycare is so expensive, but he makes to much for us to qualify for head start so we can get my 31/2 yr. old in preschool, if i can't afford daycare how am i supposed to afford preschool? i'm not trying to get welfare or wic or housing i just want to get my son in school!
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
isnt that crazy? I feel the same way. If I went to work, and i had to put both of my kids in daycare, it just wouldnt pan out. Id be working just to pay or the daycare. That is just absolutely crazy.
@nuffsed (1274)
4 Jan 07
Corporate power is running away with political power. Corporate power is all about consolidation, so a union between China Russia ans USA Corporates is always likely in the long run. That's when freedom of choice becomes history. Yes it's gloomy. Education is all you can give your kids, nothing else is of value. It may not be formal education that proves the most valuable. Corporate power will have to compete with global warming. The stage is almost set.
• United States
4 Jan 07
It is so disgusting to see how corporate america is making all the money even if they fail. Did you see the report yesterday about Nardelli (Home Depot CEO) walking away with 210 million in compensation because he failed to bring Home Depot the numbers expected? Is that fricken crazy or what? What the heck is going on?
@nuffsed (1274)
5 Jan 07
sites like commondreams.org make a great alternative to the regular news media. They highlight a lot of this corporate obscenity that mainstream news outlets wont carry. There really is too much going on under the public radar. Corporations are turning civilisation into Metropolis. Corporate power and the "lobby system" are the biggest danger to the Constitution and the freedoms of Western cultures.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
Thanks for adding on. Thank you for the site. I will have to check it out. I agree i think there is just such a great injustic on how the poor are being paid so little and the rich are being paid horrendous amounts of cash...Ugh, it just makes me naseous!(sorry i never know how to spell that word). YOu have been rated!
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
5 Jan 07
i saw it also and was very fascinated by wut the experts were saying! i have to say they only talked about upper and lower middle class, see i don't think i fall into neither of those categories, upper class was someone who can have a nice house, and provide wants and needs for their kids, and still be living okay, lower was someone who lives in the ghetto and can't provide extracuricular necessities for their kids but still owns or rents their own home, i'm kinda in b/w i live in a good neighborhood, it's newer but not rich, i can get my kids into sports but at the end of the day i'm living paycheck to paycheck, so where do i fall, middle middle-class?! wut about u?
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
Im so with you on this point. Although she has a chart on her site about what categorizes upper, middle and lower class and we fall under upper class by the fnancial standards of that chart, but do not have Gucci sunglasses or the fanciest cars or the fanciest car. We also live from paycheck to paycheck and seems like all our money goes on mortgage, utilities, gas and groceries. Geez...how much money do you have to make to make ends meet?
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
7 Jan 07
i know, it seems like even when i was working we were still living paycheck to paycheck! i guess because we had more money it seems like we had more bills!
• India
4 Jan 07
Oprah is known to sensationalize issues, So this doesn't surprise me. Please don't take whatever she says on the face value, find out more about things before you start believing in them.
1 person likes this
@nuffsed (1274)
5 Jan 07
That is fair comment. However any publicist knows that you have to grab peoples' attention because they are so numb with overkill and hype at every turn. :) Right on seek out the facts, turn off those damned soaps and get a book!!!
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
I agree, she seems to sensatinalize alot of topics. Thanks for the encouragement, nuffsaid, about getting a book. SWAK also recommended one. You both have been rated. Thanks.
@sedel1027 (17855)
• United States
4 Jan 07
I saw parts of the Oprah show. What I did see I agreed with. There are fewer and fewer people who are truly middle class and people judge others way more than they think they do. I agreed with the section of the show when Oprah showed who two different mother punished their kids. I know that when we had less I did resort to more punishments in the corner, but now that we have more things to take away, those go away first. The saddest part of the show was when they were interviewing people in a poor area and the Africian Amercian man said that the only way his kids could get a good job was if they became rappers. I know the school system is not good where he was, but you would think he would aspire for his children to become more than he is and to have a better life now matter how they could do it. We are not wealthy by any means, but my son knows that he is expected to do well in school, attend college and to do whatever necessary to be successful and acheieve his goals.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
I agree that was so sad. Well, even my husband and I talk about our kids. And with all these reality shows and how some of them actually make stars (Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, etc). And people being discovered through MyTube or whatever, we thought that by the time our kids grow older, that they wont have trouble getting discovered by the means that are just popping up like crazy out there. Who knows were our world will be then. But I think that education is the best bet. I might need to do some serious thinking about homeschooling and what would be best for their educational future. I have to tell you that the show really was eye opening for me.
@sedel1027 (17855)
• United States
7 Jan 07
The school situation was a big eye opener. I have been taking hard look at my sons education and becoming more frustrated lately. With not being able to afford private school, we need to make some kind of change. The first change I am making is sending him to the best summer camp in the area where they have art, reading, sports, swimming, computer lab and library on a daily basis. The kids still get "play time" but they learn all summer as well and this give them an added edge. I hope I can get him in since the camp is run by a private school.
• United States
4 Jan 07
I didn't watch the show, but it does seem that the middle class is dissappearing. It can be hard to believe, but lets look at the changes taking place in the world around us. It gets harder and harder for people to keep up financially. We also see that the gap between the very rich and the very poor is very wide. It takes more money for the average family to get by these days. You can make a fair amount of money, but it doesn't go very far. Prices on things from gas to your children's education is always going up. Even if something goes up, when the price comes back down it is never as low as it started. We are being gradually conditioned into accepting higher prices. You can work multiple jobs and still just barely get by. Unfortunately, I don't see this improving.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
I agree with you. Money just doesnt seem to go that far. I think another thing has to do with how social status seems to be such a bigger deal now than ever. Im not sure if it has to do that Im older and it seems to matter more amongst my peers, but I just can tangibly feel the difference when Im meeting new people how proud they are of their homes and how their homes look, etc. I cannot lie and say that I dont act the same way,but I can remember the time that my eyes were opened to how my home was "unnaceptable" amongst these "social lookers". It made me feel horrible to have a small house and not enough room to entertain. I had a lady tell me that my house was too small to have parties and therefore it was better if we did parties at hers. I dont act in a snooty way, but im very self conscious now about the way my house looks. I hate it, i really do, I just dont know how to get out of that cycle because I feel that everyone around me judge me because of they way my house looks, or what type of furniture I have, etc. Its horrible.
• United States
5 Jan 07
On the last paragraph, when I say that "I hate it", i didnt mean that i hate my small house. Im very thankful for what we have but what i meant was tht I hate the way that i feel tht i need to prove myself to others of what i have in the neighborhoods we live.
@camille101 (1027)
• United Arab Emirates
4 Jan 07
yes, i believe it. the poor becomes poorer, the rich becomes richer. guess it's a human nature to be greedy. when you got something, you tend to asks for more and more and more. this is the reality.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
yep...i think so. I try to keep my kids grounded but at times they have a sense of entitlement that I have to stop myself and put my foot down and say no to them. I hate going to the store with them because of the stress of having to say no to them. I do my grocery shopping online now.
@natuser28 (907)
• United States
4 Jan 07
Yes it's true. The rich are getting richer, and the poor have more babies. Middle class was slowly bleeding in the 80's. Where the rich was not being tax which gave a huge advantage to them.
1 person likes this
• United States
5 Jan 07
Thanks for your comment. You have been rated.
@kathy77 (7488)
• Australia
4 Jan 07
Unfortunately yesturday I could not watch Oprah but I do watch her most days, bit yes it is true that the middle class is disappearing and it is harder to move up class. I do believe that all of our children require a better education these days to get anywhere in life, with receiving a better opportunity in life.
1 person likes this
@livewire (41)
• United States
4 Jan 07
The show caused me to fear also. There is definitely a class separation in this country and it seems to be getting worse everyday. There is no middle class in America anymore. If you think about it, even being a millionaire is not good enough in this country. More billionaires were reported this year than ever before. How are normal working families ever supposed to keep up with just ordinary expenses? I am trying to instill in my child that an education is a must, not an option and pray for the best.
• United States
5 Jan 07
I know!!! Where are all these billionaires comming from and so whats happening? The middle class is turning millionaires or falling back? I dont get it. Thanks for the comment.
@wahmoftwo (1298)
• United States
5 Jan 07
I saw the show. I think it just reiterates the poin that a good education is essential. I think that we should preach that to our kids from a very young age.
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
5 Jan 07
very true, i hope to go back to college when my daughter is in school, i have 18 units so far, which is a yr. and a half, so hopefully when i do it my kids can look up to me and c how needed a good eduacation is!
@sbeauty (5871)
• United States
4 Jan 07
I didn't watch Oprah, but I have heard many times that the middle class will cease to exist during the next century. Unfortunately, many middle class people will never make it into the upper class, just the way it is now, and they'll start slipping into the lower class. A very few in our society are being paid exorbitantly high wages. They are using their power to get more and more for themselves by giving those under them less and less. It has been going on for a long time, but you can see it if you look. When I was a kid, families lived on just one income. They could have a house, a new car, etc. on just one average income. Now most families can't possibly make it on one income, so both parents work, but they don't have as much disposable income, because they have to pay someone to watch their kids. Prices continue to go up. I know a lot of people now where the parents have 3 and even 4 jobs just trying to make ends meet. These people are going to reach their limit before much longer, and then what's going to happen?
@mgmagana (3621)
• United States
5 Jan 07
not true, some people can become educated and get great jobs so never say never, but the vast majority if they stay in the same boat then well they will eventually fall into the lower class bracket! my husband now makes good money, but we can't get my kids into daycare because of the expense, so i can't work, but when i do work we will make really good money together! and not struggle as much, but u're right it sucks how now a days both parents have to work and it has a huge effect on the kids!
• United States
8 Jan 07
I very seldom watch the Oprah Show
@suny1946 (275)
• China
6 Jan 07
No,I did not.
@dsunny (999)
• India
5 Jan 07
nope i dint watch it...it doesnt air in our country...but ive seen a few of the shows and really like them..
@venshida (4837)
• United States
5 Jan 07
I did not watch it. I do believe the middle class is disappearing. We are now having two society the rich and the poor. The middle class pays the bulk of the taxes. The rich finds a lot of loops hole, and pay the bare minimum.
• India
5 Jan 07
no
@scorpius (1793)
• India
5 Jan 07
yes i did so.i thinkt aht it is also intresting intnhe fact that the middle class is indeed slowly disappearing.it is becoming the high class what with higher pay grades the mioddle class are certainly winging it out! http://www2.oprah.com/index.jhtml http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_class http://in.news.yahoo.com/051227/137/61q2w.html
@marryann (45)
• Canada
5 Jan 07
I thought it was a great Oprah! You said "Almost to the point that I want to take some drastic measures with my kids to make sure they are secure for the future....education wise". I think that'd be a great step for your kids! I think education comes from school, social (including family social time) and extracurricular, so good on you for considering doing even more for your kids.
@Ravenladyj (22937)
• United States
5 Jan 07
I didnt see the show myself but i really dont care for her in the slightest..however my husband and I talk about this very thing on occasion and yes we both feel that middle class is slowly but surely being weeded out...its getting to the point where you are either Upper Class (which is what they want) or Lower Class (which is where many middles fall now) OR NO Class (which would be the below poverty level ppl that they flat out want gone which is IMO SO sick on the gov. part) I have kids myself and though I always push education on them and the importance of it and they are both excellent students I often wonder and quite frankly, worry as well what the future holds for them...I mean realistically when they are my age how much more damage will have been done by that point ya know..it really is a very scary thought...and as much as I want grandkids some day I dont dare think about wht their lives will be like when they are my age....