Samad Saadiq Cost of Living in America America is the best place to live. But “money is the key to survival” (Crute) which all Americans live by. With the economy growing fast so is the cost of living. The cost of living is the amount of money it cost to survive with the basic necessities. Even though the majority of Americans survived off of the cost of living, they believed that things would get better, and they would be able to spend money on things other than necessities. The changes in the type of jobs, necessities, and how people spent money 50 years ago to now increase the cost of living. This is why the cost of living provides more jobs, better pay, and better places to live. With work being the only source of income people viewed it as an “obligation” (Crute). “Work was something that everyone did, and wasn’t considered a job” (Crute). People worked because they had to; it was the only way to survive. Families could not survive if their parents did not work, because there was no money. Although most of the money that came into the households came from the parents; children also worked and brought in money.
The only jobs that existed were jobs that provide goods and services needed for survival. “My mother was an in house nurse and worked barely for minimum wage” (Crute). The average American would pay “$49,000 for a house, 35 cents for cigarettes, and one cent for candy” (Crute). A place to stay and food to eat are the necessities. Rarely was money spent on things such as movies, candy, or eating out. Living was just living and we survived just fine off of the basic needs in 1960. The 21st century is a lot different compared to how people viewed the world 50 years ago. Most people go to work because they enjoy what they do or they enjoy the benefits of the job. There are jobs for just about anything you want to do in the world, encouraging more Americans to work. The majority of Americans work, but the government is more involved in helping struggling families who don’t work to survive. There are child labor laws that prohibit children from working until they turn at least 14 years old. The economy is in such a terrible state that nothing is cheap, increasing the cost of living. The average loaf of bread cost about $3. 9 which is more than a gallon of gas. Even though nothing is cheap we do spend money on more than necessities. People pay thousands of dollars to put rims on their cars instead of hubcaps.
This is like throwing away money. Hard-earned money should be spent but not wasted. Crute remembers paying 25 cents for a gallon of gas, that we now pay $2. 79 for. In order to keep up with the increasing prices of these products and people living their lavish lifestyles, they have to pay workers more money to survive. With the cost of living now at “$8. 5 per hour” (WHD) people feel encouraged to spend it on the finer things in life. Such as the $49,000 dollar home this now costs $350, 000, or a $30,000 car. Even though the cost of living is an expense it created better opportunities for American citizens. Money is everything and Americans have been given more over the years because it costs more to live it in a beautiful place. Citizens still need the necessities but now there are more than just food and shelter that are considered necessities. If it wasn’t for the cost of living costing so much we wouldn’t be able to enjoy our money as we do now.
It would feel like the people who worked 50 years ago like an obligation but it doesn’t. Everything has increased from the number of jobs to the amount of money we bring home in just one month. The cost of living is now more than survival it’s about living life.
“Cost of Living. ” Telephone interview. 1 Nov. 2010.
“U. S. Department of Labor – Wage and Hour Division (WHD) – Minimum Wage Laws in the States. ” The U. S. Department of Labor Home Page. N. p. , n. d. Web. 05 Nov. 2010.
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