Tapati (tapati) wrote,
Tapati
tapati

What do tires have to do with class status?

The time has come to get new tires for my car.

Even though I no longer work, I am married to a darling man who still has a middle class job and grew up a few rungs above me in terms of income and class status.

The difference in how we view the world is apparent in how we think about things like tires.

He assumes that of course one always buys 4 new tires and has them rotated regularly on schedule. While I have grown more used to that way of doing things, and agree that it's sensible, I explained the way poor people approach the same problem.

"The thing is," I said, "Poor people NEVER have money for 4 new or even used tires at the same time. So what you do is buy a decent used tire whenever you have one that can no longer be patched. You make sure you have towing and road service on your insurance."

Dave always urges me to write about these things because, he says, "People don't know what it's like."

Do people really want to know?

I suspect most people don't. They'd rather ignore poverty. Poverty serves a purpose. If we solved poverty, who would willingly do the dangerous or boring jobs for minimum wage? It's much easier to shake our heads and wonder why poor people don't just work harder and stop being poor. Heaven forbid we offer them health care with even one penny of our tax money.

ETA: http://whatever.scalzi.com/2005/09/03/being-poor/

Link provided by <lj user="almighty_patsy> --Thank you so much!
Tags: class, classism, poverty
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