Stratification

“Meritocracy is an ideal system based on the belief that social stratification is the result of personal effort — or merit — that determines social standing” (Openstax, pg.188). It goes to say that people should get jobs almost exclusively based on ability and talent. Personally, I do not believe that we have a meritocracy in the United States. Although some can put forth a lot of effort and become successful, it is not common. Many people inherit jobs or money, which naturally gives them a head start above others. Other things that influence this is the inability of companies to keep their objectivity. People can (and will) be evaluated not only on skill and effort, but on gender, race, or even sexuality. This doesn’t allow for the US to have a fair meritocracy.

The Davis moore thesis states the following; 1. For society to function positions must be filled, from most important to least important. 2. Some positions are more important than others. 3. More important positions must be filled by more qualified people. 4. More important positions must offer greater rewards. In some ways, this theory makes sense (https://bb.uccs.edu/webapps/blackboard/execute/displayLearningUnit?course_id=_178160_1&content_id=_2665604_1). It seems fair that a surgeon who had to go through many years of higher education should earn more than someone who works at Sears as a cashier. But when you look further, you find more examples that don’t seem to make a lot of sense. For example, the annual salary of Lionel Messi (a pro soccer player) is $43,865,800. The average annual salary of a high school teacher is $56,310. This, by Davis-Moore’s theory, would imply that a soccer player is more important than a teacher. I personally disagree with this notion. I agree more with Mosca’s theory, which states 1. No society can exist unless its organized, it needs leadership. 2. Leadership requires inequalities of power; some people lead and some follow 3. Because human nature is self-centered, people in greater power will always use power to seize greater rewards for themselves (https://bb.uccs.edu/webapps/blackboard/execute/displayLearningUnit?course_id=_178160_1&content_id=_2665604_). 1 I believe these descriptions make sense. People need leadership, otherwise we would become disorganized. And those who are in power will always take advantage of the power they have, because no one is truly altruistic.

I personally agree with Mosca’s argument that humans are self-centered by nature. People will do what they must do to survive. No one is truly altruistic in nature, and I don’t think that’s a negative notion. People can still do good deeds, and make the world and themselves better in the process, but now without some sort of reward.