Monday, September 15, 2014

Blog Post Due Friday - Period 1

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/10/05/rich-people-just-care-less/?src=mv&_r=0

1.  Read the article.  Consider the author's tone, structure of the essay, and your personal reaction.
2. Please add an intelligent comment (minimum 3 sentences) in response to the linked article from the NY Times.  Be sure to reference specifics from the article.
3. Optional: Comment on a classmates post in a second post (minimum 3 sentences)
*Use only your first name, last initial and class period.

29 comments:

  1. I found this article very easily connected to my life. I notice in public how if some one drops their books you normally will not see some one that looks well dressed that comes from a wealthy family helping them, but some one who looks like they come from a low class family. In the article it states how the people of the low class are always stuck in a situation where they must adapt to helping people where as people of higher class do not. No matter where you come from or what your background is, we should all have each other's backs. There would be no such thing as an utopia because we would be living in one. The person who comes from higher standards does not always withhold higher values.

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  2. I feel like this article is right that rich people tend to care less, but at the same time i feel like the article is only stating that point and not fairly defending the rich people. The poor outnumber the rich by a lot, so there for the rich hear about poor peoples problem a lot more then fellow rich peoples problems and that's why you see the empathy gap. I think that everyone rich or poor tend to care less if they hear about a problem every single day, but because poor people have more problems then the rich they are the ones who get sick of hearing it not the poor and that's where this stereotype comes from. This is why when the author says something like "The more powerful were less compassionate toward the hardships described by the less powerful." you have to analyze it further than "yea the authors right" but instead think why the rich or more powerful might be less compassionate.
    Jake J 1st

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  3. While I cannot say that I agree with all the points the author makes, there are a few ideas that were interesting to me. Most notably, "we focus the most on those we value most. While the wealthy can hire help, those with few material assets are more likely to value their social assets: like the neighbor who will keep an eye on your child from the time she gets home from school until the time you get home from work." I connected this immediately to that of the Hoovervilles in Grapes of Wrath. We kept explaining it as, "the unfortunate stuck together because it was the only way to bring social change." While, in reality, it was simply what was most beneficial to everyone. They may sympathize with each other because they understand their situation, but also just because they need their help more than anything.
    Marshall B 1st

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  4. As the income gap between the rich and poor has been skyrocketing, researchers have studied the behavioral and social differences between higher and lower class people. I never realized that the poor, "are better attuned to interpersonal relations — with those of the same strata, and the more powerful — than the rich are, because they have to be." Poor people are more likely to value social relationships, as they are more likely to depend on others for help(ex. watching their children). It is evident that the insistence by Congress to cut food stamps and other programs that aid the poor is partly due to lack of empathy.
    Isabel B Period 1

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  5. After reading this article, I can conclude that it is very biased towards the rich population in the United States. Not only does the article not specify what income you must have in order to be considered "rich", but it also makes a huge generalization towards the "rich" portion of the population by stating that they lack empathy towards the poor population. However, the article does state research/facts such as, "The financial difference ends up creating a behavioral difference. Poor people are better attuned to interpersonal relations — with those of the same strata, and the more powerful — than the rich are, because they have to be.” This evidence suggests that the reason for the large gap between the rich and the poor is due to how rich people use their money so that they don’t need to work as hard. Although this article does make some valid points, I believe that it made a huge generalization towards the rich population by stating that they lack empathy towards the poor population.
    Jillian M. Period 1

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  6. While I understand the problems that the author is addressing, I do not respect the tone that the article has against the rich. I sense a feeling of bias towards the rich and it also felt that the author targeted them as "bad people". The author expresses this when comparing the rich and the poor with social interactions. Apparently, "Higher-status people are also more likely to express disregard, through facial expressions, and are more likely to take over the conversation and interrupt or look past the other speaker." Truthfully, I don't think that these have anything to do with how much power someone has; its about who the person is. There are many poor people who don't respect others and there are many rich people who do. I think that the research done is irrelevant because they can be so skewed
    Tom S Period 1

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    Replies
    1. I agree with your stance on the authors tone, because I too felt that it had a prejudice towards the rich, without even looking at the good things. I also agree with you when you said that both the poor and the "higher status" people will look down on each other, and that this article fails to recognize them. While reading your comment a thought crossed my mind. Do you think the author intentionally wanted to appear biased, or do you just think it happened to just sound that way?

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    2. I don't believe that the author wanted to be bias but I think that he needed to emphasize the point of how the poor people are struggling yet they still are compassionate. Again, while that may be true, that can still be the same case when talking about the rich.
      Tom

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    3. The title itself seems to incite bias "Rich people just care less" this is a plain and blunt way of describing rich people. While many studies are exemplified in this article. The negative regard towards the rich make this article seem contemptuous. A more leveled tone would definitely make this article more serious and professional.

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  7. While reading this article, I can say that I had a very negative look on it. I quite honestly, barely wanted to read it. The way that the author goes about this piece, and the layout, if you will, of this article seemed a little bit to much like a rant. However, on a similar note, I don't agree with the author at all. The way I see people, and the manor in which they behave, comes not from the amount of material wealth that said person(s) has, but the way that they were raised, and the people that helped to mold their life. Now, being on the poorer end of the spectrum here, I can't exactly give a personal opinion from that stand point, but knowing people on the wealthier end of the spectrum, and seeing their personality and I mean genuine personality, I can say that this social statement is more on the opinion base level from that persons' own experiences. I feel like the person, no matter the amount of wealth they could have, act in the way they feel is right, even if it is wrong to some people. If you grow up being a spoiled, snooty kid, then that is your normal, which makes you think that is right. However, if you don't grow up in that manor, then you won't tend to act in that manor. It really comes down to the person in which we are speaking, and generalizing an entire class of people based upon the actions of a few is wrong. That is practically stereotyping a class of people. In fact, I know poor people, and I am sure that anyone reading this can relate to what I am saying, who act in such a spoiled, "I am better that you and I know it" mindset, and have no regards for the people around them, or how what they say/ how they act will impact them. A quote in the article fits nicely with what I'm trying to say, "A prerequisite to empathy is simply paying attention to the person in pain. In 2008, social psychologists from the University of Amsterdam and the University of California, Berkeley, studied pairs of strangers telling one another about difficulties they had been through, like a divorce or death of a loved one. The researchers found that the differential expressed itself in the playing down of suffering. The more powerful were less compassionate toward the hardships described by the less powerful." Anyone can be like that, no matter the social standing. I don't see money as the fault within the people. In fact, money probably doesn't even have much to do with it. Then again this is my opinion, and you don't have to agree. This is just my view on the topic at hand.
    Skyler U. Period 1

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  8. I believe this article has a bias tone against the rich people. I feel like in the article, it talks about the rich as being less caring as the poor. In the article it states, "The more powerful were less compassionate toward the hardships described by the less powerful." It also states that the wealthy don't appreciate their materials as much as the poor do. I believe that this is an understatement to the rich. I believe that they equally care about their materials and the things that they have. Although it may seem like they don't appreciate all they have, I strongly believe that they care for what they have even though it may be in a different way. Alyssa S. Class 1

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  9. After reading this article many different words came to mind when trying to describe his tone like annoyed, scornful and prejudicial. This author appears to have quite a bias toward the rich and ironically enough has a prejudice against them which he also explained in the article is one of the problems of Americans having today. The author talks about how prejudice comes from our inability to relate to each other but it is hard to take advice from somebody who is clearly so biased. From the minute this article started it had a negative implication about the rich. In the first sentence it reads, “Turning a blind eye. Giving someone the cold shoulder. Looking down on people. Seeing right through them." This author doesn't seem to really be open minded to thinking about how the "rich people" feel about this in society. Does the author not realize there are hundreds of "rich people" who donate millions of money to the poor and the needy? It’s not fair to put them all in one group and call them bad. There are poor people who ignore the rich and, "rich people" who ignore the poor and the fact that this article proves that this author can't understand that, just gives an example of his unreliability.

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  10. The article had a lot of big and strong details to support the statement about rich caring less. However, it was very opinionated and harsh . The author had wrote," The more powerful were less compassionate toward the hardships described by the less powerful." Then the author goes on about Obamacare and more politics related things. Our class has discussed that poor people are more caring about other people's hardships because they have struggled. That is all based on Grapes of Wrath. I get what the author is trying to point out but at the same time, it was very negative and coarse. I completely agree with Seraphin's comment. From the beginning, it was very judgmental.
    Shradha S P1

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  11. Many points in this article bring up very good questions regarding the income of a person and their empathy. Today, impromptu studies done on different Americans ranging from different income groups show a correlation between shown empathy and income. The question would be "would homeless man or a multi-millionaire be more inclined to share a meal with someone who was hungry?" While the answer may vary, correlations seem to show a negative relationship between income and empathy. "This widening gulf between the haves and have-less troubles me," while it may be troubling to the author, i think that this is a great way to really test the idea of empathy and income.

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  12. This article seems to have a very strong negative opinion on the rich in that they don't have as much empathy as the poor and the author backs up his claims with "A growing body of recent research shows that people with the most social power pay scant attention to those with little such power. " and other reasons the author seems almost annoyed in his tone and while i cant say i disagree with the article I also believe that there are obvious exceptions to the rule. there are plenty of poor people with little empathy and rich people with a lot and to say "Rich people just care less" is much to blatant of a statement for me.It seems that the author is making too many assumptions on the individual person
    Tyler R P1

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  13. I don't completely agree with this article. They say rich people have a tendency to care less for others, but I've never seen that much of a difference. My friends back in my old town used to care for others. They had wealth and could be considered rich. And a lot of poor people were quite stingy. They wouldn't help each other out. It goes to show that this article could be a bit bias, as I can't really connect.

    -Scott K P1

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  14. The author of this article seems very biased towards the rich, assuming that all rich people and those with more power abuse it, and that they care less about others than poorer people do. I agree that sometimes this can be true, but it isn't always true. The author states that, “higher-status people are also more likely to express disregard.” Although this is true in some cases, it doesn't always happen. There are many richer people who do help give to the poor and care about others. Although the author provides research to back up his point, it is still making assumptions about the two groups of people that aren't true. I agree that sometimes the rich tend to be more selfish and not as kind as the poor may be, but author was being very biased about it. Emma D P1

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  15. The author of this article seemed bias towards the rich. I agree that in some cases the rich do turn more of a blind eye to the real issues in this country, but that isn't always the case. You can look at people like J.K. Rowling or Bill Gates and realize this. The one point I agreed with though was the, "Reducing the economic gap may be impossible without also addressing the gap in empathy" It has been shown people aren't as kind anymore towards each other like we read in GOW, but by showing more empathy for one another, maybe this issue can be gone.
    Kylee D P1

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  16. I strongly disagree with this article. It is very apparent that the author has a bias against the rich population, making the article more difficult to really analyze and connect with. The author did however present evidence that supports his claim. The author's feelings towards the rich are very inaccurate and judgmental. For example, it is not true that every rich person cares less. In fact, there are many situations where the rich actually care more.
    Sam C P1

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  17. I found this article is very interesting because it talks about how rich people are desensitized to other's emotion and tend to not be empathetic over other's misfortune. I feel that this was very true, because I have noticed that the rich tend to not help others as much, and just seem to ignore people. However I feel that this article was a bit biased, because it didn't show the other side of the argument. This article may have been more valid if the author had brought facts from the other side of the argument.
    Chris A.- Period 1

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  18. To me this article shows a lot about our human nature. If you have a lot of money and could do a lot of things for yourself, then you don't care about the people that can't. This isn't a statement for some wealthy people, but it is for most. This article is also very interesting because to me it doesn't seem fair at all, it seemed very bias; and even though the wealthier people might actually be portrayed as they are in the article,it isn't fair that it was so one sided.The author should have done a counter claim if he felt like the wealthy was so wrong for doing what they were doing; he should have showed the other side of the "argument". It just seems like the author has a hatred towards the richer population. One quote that stuck out to me though was, "Apart for the financial inequities, i fear the expansion of an entirely different gap, caused by the inability to see oneself in a less advantaged persons shoes." Even though i don't agree with how the author came about writing this article, i agree with this quote. We need to all start realizing that every person has a different struggle they have to go through every day; it doesn't matter if you're rich or not, we need to start treating each other with respect, after all we are all only human.
    Maddy G- period 1

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  19. I found that this article seemed very accusatory to people who had more money than others. But, I felt as if that were true, in some cases. But the article is somewhat biased because it only shows the viewpoint of how lower class people are not treated the same when it comes to rich people. The article forgot to show the viewpoint of how rich people feel like they treat people and also how they are treated. The author of this article seems to be thinking only of the lower class and the higher class but with no mention of the middle class and how they fit in. In the article it states, “The financial difference ends up creating a behavioral difference. Poor people are better attuned to interpersonal relations – with those of the same strata, and the more powerful – than the rich because they have to be”. While I believe that the upper class may have tendencies to look down on other people because they may have more wealth and well-being, I do not believe that there are significant behavioral differences between the two. People of the lower class could also tend to be angrier and less sympathetic to people’s problems. People of higher class could also tend to be nicer and sympathetic to people’s problems. I believe that it’s not so much about what the person has or does not have, but rather who they are as a person and how they were raised to be and act.
    Ariana D. Period 1

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  20. I agree with this article. The ever present power divides between the rich and the poor can still be the seen in today's society. Very wealthy people, or just people in general with a sense of power, tend me to less empathetic over another person's thoughts or feelings. The article states, "A growing body of recent research shows that people with the most social power pay scant attention to those with little such power. This tuning out has been observed, for instance, with strangers in a mere five-minute get-acquainted session, where the more powerful person shows fewer signals of paying attention, like nodding or laughing. Higher-status people are also more likely to express disregard, through facial expressions, and are more likely to take over the conversation and interrupt or look past the other speaker." This shows how higher status individuals tend to be less emotionally connected with the people they are listening to. Of course, not every high status person is empathetic, and not every low class person is empathetic. It depends on the individual in question.
    -Emily H. Period 1

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  21. I think that although the author of this article definitely seems to have a bias towards wealthier people, he made some valid points. He talks about how the large financial gap between people can, and is, creating a number of social issues. It appears that those of whom have more money often value their personal relationships less and lack the ability to sympathize with other’s struggles. The author says that, “While the wealthy can hire help, those with few material assets are more likely to value their social assets… The financial difference ends up creating a behavioral difference.” I think that in many cases, though not all, this is very true. The poor often have to rely on support from each other while the rich can hire people to help them. I think this is a big part of what creates a major social difference between the rich and poor; the rich cannot sympathize with the poor as they have never experienced the same struggles or needed to rely on people in the same ways. This doesn’t necessarily mean that wealthier people are bad and don’t care, it just means that they don’t really understand.
    -Brianna Linehan, Period 1

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  22. I mainly disagree with this article. Not all rich people ignore or look down on the average person. Sometimes they actually care more. That being said, however, almost everyone with power ignores or looks down on those with less power than them. Money is just the means through which they gain their power and it is the power that the money gives them that makes them more selfish and corrupt. Nowadays people with power must also be rich. There are few examples of which a powerful person truly cared enough to help out the poor. Most powerful people give just enough to charity to look good in the eyes of the public. However, there are a few exceptions. An example would be Paul Newman, who deemed that all of the proceeds of his "Newman's Own" food products would be donated to charity. So far over $380 million has been donated. He has also donated over 20 million to the Newman's Own foundation which then distributes to a variety of different charities, 10 million to scholarship funds, and is co-founder of the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp in Ashford, Ct. People such as this are rare nowadays, since power is usually a major corrupting force and not for the better.
    Chad C, Period 1

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  23. I feel that this article is partially true but at the same time not at all. Of course, there are people in the world who do not care about others and only themselves, and many of these people tend to be rich. Poor people tend to be more caring because they understand how important and helpful charity from others can be. But this is not true for all rich people. It is true that some rich people do care about the well-being of others. There are many rich people who have created large charities dedicated to helping others. So while this article is true for some rich people, it is not true for all. It almost nearly describes the common nature of human beings. There are millions of people who tend to make actions on both sides of the spectrum, good and bad. Obviously, there needs to be more "good" people but they are not all bad as this article suggests.
    -Shelby Olivieri (period 1)

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  25. The author of this article seems to be extremely bias towards the rich. I don't agree with the statement "Higher-status people are also more likely to express disregard, through facial expressions, and are more likely to take over the conversation and interrupt or look past the other speaker." You cannot always tell someone's financial status just by looking at them or speaking with them. If I could re-write the article I would have explained that rich people have a hard time connecting or understanding the hardships or lives that poor-er people live. Growing up and spending time in Fairfield County I have over heard countless ignorant conversations of "why don't poor people just get jobs?" but there are also lots of people out there who are willing to help and do incredible charity work. I think the author wrote this after only checking on side of the spectrum. It should have been explained differently. -- Katherine S period one

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