First Person As In 19th Century America, Tycoons Are Barons

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate August 2001

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They increased the number opportunities to us, or so they say. Adding numerous jobs and creating an Industrialized Country out of the United States. But is this what they're really doing? Making our lives so much better? Just look at where we are today and decide for yourself.

I give them credit, look at our country, it has grown immensely industrially. We now have factories practically around every corner! But look at these factories, who is working them? Not only are there men and women working, but our children too. They pay so little that families have been forced into sending their 10 year olds to a full time job at the factory. These full time jobs aren't just a cake walk either"”sometimes they're 15 hr shifts, working either 6 or 7 days a week. Yet, these people earn just cents a day, while these barons who are running the show do very little, yet are the richest men in the country.

Not only do they jobs have painstakingly long hours, but they also are mind-dulling and boring. A work line, where way too many people are packed into a small space, repeating the same tedious job, over and over and over again. The workers never really gain the skill of the product they're making, just a portion of the production. So no one really gains the knowledge or could even have the chance to start up a business that would counter these corporations. In horrible conditions they work. Poor lighting and ventilation along with their long hours and the dirt, people often get sick and sometimes hazardous machinery"”with unskilled workers"”often creates many injuries. Yet, no one is ever compensated for the lost work time for injuries on the job, and no one ever gets time off. Whether its for vacation, being sick, or even weekends (many people are working 7 day weeks) people don't get off work. Its horrendous! How can our nation praise such things? You know what gets me the most riled up though? The pay. I know I intimated at this before"”but its just horrible! First of all, men make almost double the amount as women, for doing the same work. And children get paid practically dirt for long days. Many children aren't even educated and have such poor conditions, they barely get any sleep. Their growth is stunted and they are in such bad nutrition. Most eating on the job! But thats all beside the point right now, because the main point is their wages! These people are working like dogs, getting paid with just bones, while these big business tycoons are raking in the dough! Carnegie makes something like $20 MILLION a year! And does he have to pay income taxes? NO! But do the everyday people, who get paid $500 a year pay these taxes? YES! How can our country be considered in prosperity when its just few that are? Most people are so poor its not even funny!