PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Joan C Williams, the author of the book, White Working Class: Overcoming Class Cluelessness In America, talked with Chris Stigall on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT, saying there is an ever-growing rift developing in the country between those at the top and the middle class.
“There’s really a deep cultural divide in the United States between people in the, what I call, the professional, managerial elites, like the top 16 percent of American families and the broad middle, the 53 percent. We talk different. We eat different. We entertain different. We think different.”
Williams explained the disconnect stems from how people in different classes communicate, both with themselves and each other.
“These two groups have very different social networks. People who are in between, so to speak, who are not in the blue dots, and people who are in the true middle class, even on the coasts, they have very local social networks. They’re very rooted. They tend to hang out with family and people they’ve known forever. That’s how they get jobs. That’s how they get social honor. That’s their social life. That’s an incredibly different way of living than the way I was brought up, where, at age 18, I’d flown the coop. I went to Yale, Harvard and MIT, kind of a caricature, I am, and I have a global network.”
Reflecting on how this division is impacting politics, she stated it is apparent that the Democrats have lost touch with their roots following the election of Donald Trump last November.
“The Democrats had an alliance with the broad middle class when they were focused on good jobs for people without college degrees. College is great. I encourage anyone who wants to go to college, but the answer that, if you want a future, you should graduate from college, excuse me, that’s no answer. Two-thirds of Americans aren’t college grads. We cannot leave them behind.”