According to a recent report from the Pew Research Center, the proportion of middle classes in the US has been decreasing since the 1970’s. In fact the American society would be now split up in two groups: the middle class on the one hand and the poorer and richer groups on the other hand.
According to the same report, the number of middle class groups amounted to 80 million households in 1971. Meanwhile the poor and rich groups encompassed over 52 million households at the same period.
In 2015 the Pew Research Center assesses that the US is equally divided in two main groups: the middle class and the minority class, namely the low-income groups and the high-income groups. Indeed, the middle class now amounts to 120 million families. Meanwhile the minority group represents about 121 million households.
Thus, the proportion of the middle class within the US society has declined. As a result, the US cannot turn a blind eye on this fact, since the middle class embodies the bedrock of the American democracy. Like Paul Mason from the Guardian reminded it, middle classes are synonymous with stability in the US. And the fact that the middle class is shrinking jeopardizes both political and economic environments.
As the presidential elections are about to start, a right candidate will have to take measures to stop this worrying phenomenon.
Text inspired by the Guardian
Étudiant à l'École de Management de l'Institut Mines-Télécom.
Consultant en communication freelance.