Power Analysis Reflection

Exploring the question, “Why are people poor?” is a very interesting one because we often first look at a situation and see it as the people’s fault who are in that situation. Whereas in reality it has more to do with the systems that these people have to face instead of the people’s practices because the people are the victim. They have been put at a disadvantage by society, having to try to build themselves up in a place where all the different systems are just beating them down again.

In the first day of the power analysis we tried to solve this puzzle, we had to connect a three by three grid of dots with four straight lines. The reason we struggled so much with this puzzle was because we were thinking of the grid as a box and we didn’t want to make a mark outside of the box which is the only way to solve this puzzle. By looking at this square we discussed restraints that we impose on ourselves or that are imposed upon us from the outside. This discussion was very interesting to me because I hadn’t thought about how often we put constraints on ourselves, not even realizing that we are doing so.

Something that really surprised me as we were listing the different systems that are in our culture today, was just how many of them we face each day without thought. A few of the once we listed were the school, transportation, food, banking, and government systems that are so common that they are almost forgotten. And we saw that many of these systems are the cause of poverty. Another shocking moment for me was as we were listing the different names used to refer to different poor communities, it was very hard to find a name for the poor white community. Eventually, we found the word “trailer park” but this isn’t something that is in the city like all the others names we had listed. This just shows that in a city poor white people are spread throughout different neighborhoods, raising the question for me, why is only the poor white community spread out? Personally I think it has a lot to do with the education system and the housing system so these would be the two systems that I would like to further explore to see how they are creating a divide.

Power Analysis

Will attend an Undoing Racism and Community Organizing workshop next semester as an alternative to MK’s Power Analysis.

Why are People Poor

The power analysis mainly solidified existing concepts that I already knew about. The exercises we did helped explain further about how the system is set up against minorities and how people generally blame the victims rather than the institutions that place people into bad situations. We talked about how there are many factors that go into making a working society and how they are designed to help some and disadvantage others. Some of those factors include systems like transportation, taxes, education, entertainment, media, criminal justice, employment and many others. Those are many systems that everyone goes through every day. Unfortunately, minorities experience the disadvantaging effects of those systems and a lot of people do not realize how much the systems are not benefiting them. After the power analysis sessions, I mainly felt frustrated that the rest of America could not go through the same power analysis that I experienced. I believe that there is a lot of ignorance circulating the country especially those who are politically active and those in powerful positions. I wonder in what ways can people properly educate the upper class and those in those powerful positions effectively.

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