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Elijah Hamlin

The racial wealth gap is the difference of net worth between a typical white household versus a typical black household. Net worth is measured by subtracting their assets from their liabilities, and according to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s 2016 Survey of Consumer Finances, it is a factor of 10. Some of the factors that Maggiulli tired controlling are education and income. Trying to control those factors contributed little to no effect on the wealth gap between the two households. Maggiulli believes that if we try to control these factors won't remove the underlying factors that put the wealth gap at such a high difference.

Negative compounding is a certain disadvantage that puts someone down and will never be able to recover from because it keeps coming back. In a black household, negative compounding is related back to having a bad start at getting an upper hand in income and finances, creating this net worth gap. Maggiulli suggests that the playing field for these households needs to be evened out and the country needs to give a better foothold to those that are misfortunate. In my opinion, I agree. This wealth gap shouldn't exist and doing anything possible to get rid of it is worth it in the long run. As much as people don't want to hear it, but removing certain amounts of money from wealthier households and spread it around.

In a way, Magiulli using direct address makes the problem that he brings up everyone's problem. It's not just his problem, but instead, everyone's problem in this economic structure that has been built. The way he uses direct addressing, makes it seem like its personal. Magiulli wants you to feel as though you should be inspired for change in a society that needs it. Using direct addressing makes it harder to make a response formal.

The fact that Magiulli uses graphs proves that he's done his research and conducted experiments using the scenarios that he's mentioned. In the mentioned essay their evidence is drawn from reliable sources but without the use of visual representation, like Magiulli, it makes it harder to believe why these numbers may be real and verified by the selected source. Magiulli engages the reader using these graphs to make it not only an essay but also a visual experience while the essay listed just makes an informative point but losing the reader in the process.

brayden wernli

A racial wealth gap is difference in incomes such as a white household and a black house hold or a Mexican house hold . The Net worth is actually found by subtracting their stuff from their liabilities. Maggiulli had tried controlling some of these things such as the education the income, how ever this had little affect.

Negative compounding is a disadvantage that people won't be able to come back from because it won't stop.This happens due to having a bad start in life. Maggiulli says that things need to be evened out so people can get a better start in life. But in don't think that would work why on paper this sounds like a good idea taking more money from the wealthy and spreading it just won't work. The reason it won't work isn't that we couldn't put the police in place but that people won't let this happen. People won't give up enough of their income to change lives in the United States the wealthy already pay 26.9% of the tax money and if you keep eating at there income they will start hiding it or finding a way around it. at that point we would lose more money then we had to start. The only real affective way to help this situation is if we cut our military spending in half (this would leave us with 300 billion for it and still make us more powerful then the next 4 country put together.) With the 300billion we could rain eup the quality of living in places of less income. We could make better schools with better pay for the teachers try to start better working programs to try and help increase the average wage , we could renovate the section 8 apartments make things look nicer. We could also increase spending for school activities such as sports or clubs and try to help these kids grow up in a better place. When kids are active in sports and clubs they are way less likely to be involved in criminal activities and are more happy in general.

Magiulli try to make this seem personal but this is everyones problem, we all need to take care of each other even if we don't live in this. I feel like he's try to make you want the change trying to light the fire under our belly for a lack of a better word

Maiulli did use graphs and proved that he's looked into this and he has facts to back up what he's talking about which makes it easier to believe him and understand what he's saying.

Shamirah Armstrong

1. A racial wealth gap it defined as the difference in incomes and net worth between different races. For example, a White family, An African American family, and a Mexican family will have different incomes and net worth. A net worth can be measured by the dollar amount of your assets subtracted by your debts. The writer tried to control certain things like income and education. These things have no effect on a wealth gap between the families that I have mentioned. The writer had believed that if you controlled and removed certain factors that it would change the wealth gap, but it would not.

2.Negative compounding is defined as a disadvantage that is put on people to stop them from doing something. It is something that people can not recover from because no matter what happens it keep coming back and affecting the person. It will be different for each person and family. Also it could be related to a person or family getting a late or bad start at something that affects their income which is one reason why there is a wealth gap in the first place. The writer who is Magiulli suggested that things need to be evened out. This way the playing field can be even, and everyone is equal and have the same opportunities. In my opinion I agree with what Magiulli suggested. I agree because I feel that there should not be a wealth gap in the first place. That it is not fair to Black families and other families that are not that as fortunate and do not have the help that most white families have. I feel that the country should not be divided this way. There are many ways that the wealth gap can be prevented. The country could raise wages and returns for low income families. It could also lower taxes if that is possible or just find a way to help low income families in general that way it will not be a wealth cap and people would not feel divided.

3.Magiulli uses direct addressing to get people to see and understand that this is just not his problem but everyone’s problem. He wants his message to get across to everyone and to make it feel personal. He wants people to know that the wealth gap is not a good thing and how we all need to care and fight for one another. How we need to protect and do what’s right for everyone and not just ourselves.

4.Magiulli uses charts and other visuals shows how much he cares about what he is talking about. He is engaging the readers to keep interested in what he is trying to get across. This shows that he is not just speaking opinions that he has done his research and is speaking facts. Him using charts shows how valid his information is and makes it easier to believe that he is right.


1. The racial wealth gap is the net worth between different races all over the U.S. According to the article, researchers used “net worth data provided by the Survey of Consumer Finances” which is a chart that demonstrates the gap between racial wealth. The overall gap between black and white household is that white household has approximately ten times more wealth that black households. The factors that Maggiulli tries to account for this racial wealth gap is by controlling the level of education in each household. The certain factors for controlling this wealth gap is controlling the education level of a household. Controlling these factors affect the size by shrinking the racial wealth gap from a factor of 10 to a factor of three to four. Maggiulli argues that adjusting for these factors is defeat because even though the racial gap shrunk, it is still a major gap so Maggiulli says something else is going on.

2. Negative compounding is the money you should have earned while working but did not. This deals with the racial gap between whites and blacks because according to the text and the graphs blacks make less money than whites even though both work equally. Maggiulli suggest that “at the beginning of this piece, if we want to reduce social inequality, we must reduce economic inequality”, (paragraph 34). I think this is a good idea because reducing economic inequality will give the blacks a chance to have equal income. Another solution to this problem could be putting a limit on the certain amount of money each household makes.

3. I think Maggiulli uses direct address in his essay because in some way everyone is affected by racial wealth problem. Maggiulli uses “you” and “we” which indicates that he is talking about his readers and himself. He talks about different race, but mainly talks about white and blacks and their wealth gap. This affect the tone of the essay and my own response to his argument because it makes me feels like I am not alone and that there is other people around the world that is going through the say problem that my black house hold is going through.

4. I think Maggiulli makes this choice by using graphs because he is showing evidence to support his claim. I see Maggiulli is using moves from chapter 3 to help readers interpret the charts by using the charts that connects to the quotes that he is saying. He also uses “As you can see…” when referring to the chart which is an example of a template for introducing quotations. When reading the essay “The Start Racial Inequity of Personal Finances in America.” my reaction was that the author did not present any evidence for his claim which made me wonder if the author is claiming facts. However, when I read “Give Black Household More Economic Power,” I saw graphs which informed me that the author has done his research to back up his claim. Despite the differences between the articles, both articles mentioned that education within black and white households are a major factor in racial wealth gap.

Crystal N

1. A racial wealth gap it the difference within incomes and net worth between different people of different races. Researches define a net worth as the value of the assets a person owns, minus the liabilities they owe. Overall their is a large wealth gap between a white household and a black household. The gap is about ten times, with black households earning less than white households. Maggiulli says a major factor of this wealth gap is caused from education. While fixing this factor will lower the difference it will not completely eliminate it. Maggiulli believes this because the gap is such a high difference it would take years of fixing the education difference which would result in a lower wealth gap.

2.Negative compounding is referred to the opposite of compounding, it is the money you should have earned while working but did not. Negative compounding is disadvantage that is hard to recover because it is a constant occurrence. Maggiulli says a lot of this relates back to having a inadequate start in life, which goes back to the education people receive. The writer Maggiulli suggests evening out the playing field, this way everyone starts out equal. With everyone starting out equal each person would be able to work for the same opportunities. I agree with Maggiulli, but not completely because I feel that equity is just as important as equity. Equity makes the 'playing field' even giving the people who need extra help to reach the same opportunities will get it.

3. Maggiulli uses "you" and "we" in order to make his essay personal. Making an essay personal pulls at the sympathy strings of the readers. Another reason is when people see themselves included in the problem they feel more of the need to change it rather than reading "his" or "they" Maggiulli shows "we" are able to change this for ourselves and everyone.

4. I believe Maggiulli uses charts and graphs to easily show the racial wealth gap. Magiulli's use of these charts showed readers that he is not just talking about opinions rather he is showing the data from research centers and professionals.

Jah'Liyah Bedminster

The racial wealth gap is the difference in incomes between different races. This article focuses primarily on the gap between white and black households in America. This racial wealth gap is deeply rooted in systematic discrimination. In the article, the author shows how big the racial wealth gaps between these two races are by showing graphs, charts, and other visual representations. In 2016, based off of the median net worth by race, the gap between these two races were dramatically different. “…the typical white household has 10 times as much wealth ($171, 000) as the typical black household ($17, 000) in the U.S.,” Maggiulli expresses. Even when Maggiulli controls a household’s education level, the wealth gap still exists. The author argues that “…the median black household with a college degree has a net worth similar to the median white household without a high school diploma.” The author alleges that he sees negative compounding, which is a certain disadvantage that is put on people to stop them from doing something, at work. These disadvantages can be redlining or even just starting off in a bad place economically. One of the only possible solutions to reduce the racial wealth gap is to improve the initial conditions of those who are the worst off in society. We need equality of opportunity and a level playing field for all races in America.


The two “sides”, liberals and conservatives, have always thought of the other as unreasonable or irrational. They never understand why the other believes what they believe. These two sides never stop to understand where the other is coming from and immediately labeled each other as the bad guy. They think that their beliefs are so different, they don’t even want to listen to each other. Even though they themselves don’t want to listen, they expect the other side to listen to them. Sean Blanda agrees with this in her essay, The “Other Side” Is Not Dumb, when she states, “Over time, this morphs into a subconscious belief that we and our friends are the sane ones and that there’s a crazy ‘Other Side’ that must be laughed at—an Other Side that just doesn’t ‘get it,’ and is clearly not as intelligent as ‘us’” (213). These two sides need to be able to listen and talk to each other to solve problems in unity. These past few years have had many uprisings, including Covid-19 and Black Lives Matter. That is why this topic is urgent; these events that brought chaos could have been cared for if the two sides talked to each other to come to a conclusion. Many people believe that race is the reason for this division, but I believe that there are other corresponding reasons which are money, geography, and the media.

In minority households, money is more scarce than in white households. Collins agrees with this when he writes, “White households remain more likely to transition into millionaire status than Latinos and Blacks. The percentage of white families that are worth a million dollars has increased from 7 percent in 1992 to 15 percent in 2016.16 Only about 2.3 percent of Latino households and 1.9 percent of Black households had a net worth over a million dollars in 2016” (11). Throughout time, Latino and Black households always had less money than white households. In general, white people are more conservative and minorities are more liberal. Democrats tend to focus more on the equality for everyone aspect which brings more people of color into the picture. Minorities don’t have a lot of money unlike white people; they want an equal chance to compete with white people so they are usually liberal and put more stress on equality.

Conservatives need to wear the shoes of liberals and liberals need to wear the shoes of conservatives to understand the differences of each other. One way this would be possible is by understanding why they believe what they believe. The best way to do that is to go back to their environment and see what caused them to become conservative or liberal. Conservatives usually live in rural areas and liberals usually live in urban cities. A lot of the necessities in rural areas like police, firefighters, doctors, etc. have all been relocated in urban areas because they get higher wages and recognition than if they stayed where they were. The workers that stay in the rural areas would not have the best equipment. Almost all of the taxes paid in rural areas get used for urban areas (Leonard 283). When Trump came, people who lived in these rural areas thought of him as someone who could change these unfair policies of having urban areas get all the benefits. Sometimes, liberals make some policies that seem meaningless to conservatives (and vice versa) because of where they live and how much money they own. Liberals usually believe that people are born good and conservatives usually believe that people are born evil (Leonard 280). So, their beliefs have been based on different principles.

These different principles also get born from different types of news channels. Various news channels lean left, while others lean more right. There are some channels that are closer to the middle and don’t ridicule the other side, but they still hold their beliefs. It is very hard to find news that is not biased or slanderous. If someone watches news that mocks Trump as a bad guy, they would also believe that Trump is evil. If they watch news that says Biden is doing more bad than good to the government, then they would believe that Biden is not a good president.

We have friends who usually have the same beliefs as us. We listen to them saying that our beliefs are correct and the other side is wrong. We listen to things that we agree with and block out other opinions (Blanda 215). Media plays a huge role in determining whether people are liberal or conservative. Conservatives usually watch news channels like Fox News and liberals usually watch channels like CNN. Social media groups people in political parties. If someone identifies as one party and they have friends or follow people who are in that party and view posts by people who are in that party, then they would only be exposed to people and posts that are related to that party. They would never see the other party’s viewpoint on social media. Social media separates people even more than they already were.

Now that we have established the reasons for separation, we need to find a way to bridge the two sides together. First, we need to listen to and understand each other, then we need to find common ground. We cannot have any false information or slander be brought across to create more chaos. Even if some passes through, the two sides need to communicate with each other to solve the problem. Bridging the differences is not easy, but if the two sides can cooperate, then it may be possible to come together on specific topics. Communication is key; with communication, we might come closer to filling in the gaps and closing the holes. I believe that money, geography, and media are all of the main points that shape our society into two polar pieces.


“The Silent War”
We are in a war. This war is not heard through machine guns or planes flying overhead. This war is heard through the typing of keys, the marching in the streets, and the click of the remote as the television turns on. This is the war of the 21st century in which our nation becomes more and more divided into red and blue each day. The divide grows bigger not only within the government itself but also amongst the people. The country is tearing itself apart from the inside out. Minor arguments turn into online battlefields and the road to “equality for all” still hasn’t been paved. Furthermore, keeping quiet is no longer an option in the eyes of some people. Now, it is reasonable as to why some people may think that. However, when the decision to choose a side is rushed it can cause the person choosing a side to be biased or choose the wrong side for them simply because they didn’t have adequate resources to make the decision, this is one of the primary reasons for the increase in polarization.
Eric Wargo, a writer for Association for Physiological Science asserts that it only takes people one-tenth of a second to judge someone and that the longer we look at someone the more confident we are of our prejudices (Wargo 2006). This confidence in our judgment can make it harder for people to change their minds after they have decided which side they are on. This judgment eventually leads to polarization on a large scale as we have seen in recent years. In fact, a Times article written by Ian Bremmer suggested that the capital riot was decades in the making; Bremmer explains that the United States has actually been divided for a longer time than we had originally realized. Furthermore, from the events in Bremmer’s article, it is apparent that growing tensions in the United States will lead to further riots in the future if not kept in check. The capital riot, as Bremmer suggests, was just a spark of what could come if the bridges between citizens aren’t mended.
Currently, we have reached a point in our history where the tension from division has pushed us to turn against one another and think of the other side as foreign or uneducated when in reality, neither is true. The problem with thinking that we are better than others is that it only furthers the divide which makes it harder to come back from. Sean Blanda in his essay The “Other Side” Is Not Dumb, writes, “When someone communicates why they are not “on our side” our first reaction is to run away or dismiss them as stupid” (213). I believe that in order to avoid this behavior we must remember that a scenario always has multiple perspectives. You may think one is more credible than the other, but by looking at both sides you will have a better understanding of the scenario. We, as a society, must learn to listen to the other side and collect all our evidence before making a conclusion. We must be more mindful of other people’s beliefs even if they differ from ours. If this is not done, society will reach a point where it will be much harder to come back from the divisions within our nation.
Nowadays, the primary division is between Republicans and Democrats. Sometimes we ridicule the opposing side when most of the time we haven’t stopped to truly listen. We hear their opinions, but not their line of reasoning. We don’t listen long enough to understand why they would feel that way or how they came to feel the way they do. In most cases, the minute we hear something we don’t like we either don’t let them finish their own perspective and refuse to hear another word. Often, we reject what undermines our understanding of the world. We sort people into groups and categories that we understand. We are rapidly approaching a period in which if we do not mend some of the divisions between us we will be forever stunted in our ability to understand and communicate with one another. People no longer trust each other, we question each other’s sources, we question their motives, and we oftentimes are locked in an argument in which we believe ourselves to be right.
This distrust is most apparent on social media: the media is a public platform with millions of people contributing their opinion each day. The media can be a very easy place to get lost with all the information and opinions that it has, it serves as polarization’s primary weapon. Most times, you probably won’t even know the other person in real life which only adds to the skeptical atmosphere. As Beata Bialy puts it in her essay, “Social Media–– From Social Exchange to Battlefield”:

Psychological warfare on social media can take different forms—overt or covert, depending on the target audience and objectives. Overt methods consist of acting via official social media accounts and channels. Covert methods involve creating false accounts, using social media trolls (called by some experts “hybrid trolls  [25]) or bots, addressing closed social networks (11).

Essentially what Bialy means by this statement is that social media is getting harder to control both because of the number of people that use it and the algorithm behind these apps. Bialy acknowledges the fact that social media was originally a tool made to connect us, but she also explains that social media can also be used in the way described in the excerpt which is using the media as a weapon to attack the opposing side, which references cyberbullying and the difficulties of managing it (Bialy 2017). Tying this back to the current day, it is reasonable to assume that more arguments occur over social media platforms as there are more people concentrated in one space and the added note that people tend to be bolder when talking through a screen than in real life. Nonetheless, within the connection, there are benefits that come from it, such as guidance on which side or party is right for you.
Understandably, people may be biased towards their own opinion or the opinion that they have believed before the conflict, however, even when we are certain that our opinion is the right choice we should still take the time to listen to the other side. After all, in a time of such a great divide, listening is crucial to the reunification process. In this case, listening to the other side means being willing to be open-minded and hear what the other side has to say before making judgments. By being open-minded it will make us better informed which helps us in both choosing a side and rebutting aside once we have chosen our side. Listening to the other side helps bridge our differences because it connects us to see each other’s ideas. It allows us to think through the other person’s shoes which lets us see the other side as closer to us and not so foreign.
Robert Leonard in his essay “Why Rural America Voted for Trump”, emphasizes the fact that America is divided in ideological views and also day-to-day life views. There is a contrast between rural America and urban America that is present in the essay, as he recalls that “for the first time, I had a glimpse of where many of my conservative friends and neighbors were coming from. I thought, no wonder Republicans and Democrats can’t agree on things like gun control, regulations, or the value of social programs. We live in different philosophical worlds with different foundational principles” (Leonard 281). In other words, Leonard is saying that you don’t truly know what you haven’t experienced. He is suggesting to his readers that we must all be mindful of how others see things in order to truly get a grasp of what it is like for the other side.
To listen to the other side, one must be aware of what they say and what other opinions are out there, and once they come across opinions that differ from their own, they must keep an open mind and allow the other side to explain themselves. They should not immediately jump to the conclusion that the other side is stupid or arrogant. Listening also allows us to see what our nation needs and in this case, ironically, we need to listen to one another. When we’re talking about our opinions to the other side we should challenge the other side's ideas by proposing our ideas while at the same time keeping in mind the perspective and circumstance of other people. Some may say that you wouldn’t do what makes sense and that you would do what works best for you, however, they fail to recognize that sometimes what makes sense and what works for you is the same thing.
You can decide what side you are on when you have heard an adequate amount of reasons and sources from both sides, adequate meaning enough conducted research and reasons to cover the story from all perspectives. By educating yourself as to what a discussion is about and what the different sides of the story are. It allows you to make a better argument while at the same time understanding things about the sides which allows you to have your own original opinions on both parties. I have a friend who thinks of things as very one-sided. However, whenever I confront them as to why they think this they most often realize that they don’t have a direct line of reasoning, they often reply with: “Well that’s just how it is.” The point of this is that sometimes decisions are made without careful thought. This makes your belief easily knocked down by the simple question of “why?”
Nonetheless, it is true that in some cases we are waiting too long and we must take action. However, there is a difference between taking action and taking charge of your own decisions. When your decision is rushed, it makes you ill-informed which essentially means you are picking what other people think is best for you instead of picking something for yourself. We can guide people by informing them, but in the end, we should let them make their own decisions. When you take a side just because other people tell you to or you’ve only heard one thing about one side. Nowadays, for example, news outlets tend to be more biased towards one side than the other. They portray one side as “correct” or “better” by showing programs that exploit the other side or by having reporters explain why their side is better.
In order to bridge our differences, we must listen to the other side, understand the other side’s argument, and act upon what we believe is right. We must make sure that we have all the information we need to make the judgment, and most importantly we must make the decision with an open mind. Author, Nick Maggiullini displays this in his article, “Give Black Households More Power” which advocates for real equality of opportunity and not just an image (Maggiullini). Maggiullini is encouraging his readers to act upon their words and not just say them. He is encouraging them to keep an open mind to other people’s ideas and understand what they are proposing before making judgments or assumptions. In order to create a better world for everyone, we must learn to listen and cooperate if we are to ensure equality for all Americans. We must push past our differences in order to see our similarities because, in the grand scheme of things, we are all on the same side.

Nyazhlynn Void

In the article, researchers use data found by SCF. What was found was that White house households have ten times more wealth than Black households. The white community has so much more power than the black community because of the resources that they have access to. It was discussed that education has nothing to do with these numbers. Even if an black person does go to college he or she would still be making just as much as a white person with no college education. The author mentions that if we were to reduce social inequality, that economic inequality must be reduced too. Maybe doing that will give black communities an equal chance to earn the same amount of money in the United States as a white person would. Also a chance to "live the dream" says the author.

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