Some people believe that the best way to produce a happier society is to ensure that there are only small differences between the richest and the poorest members. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Some people maintain the view that the smaller the gap between the rich and the poor, the happier the society becomes. However, in my view, this is not always the case.
Admittedly, when the gap between the rich and the poor is small, people will have less sense of deprivation when comparing their own wealth with that of others. Nevertheless, smaller gap does not necessarily bring more happiness to the society.
This is the conflict between the size of the economy and the distribution of social wealth quite common in economics. If a country is trapped in poverty and decides not to develop for fear of expanding the income gap, then people will enjoy more equality but less wealth and happiness. Besides, if the income gap becomes too small, the motivation for people to work hard in order to move up the social ladder and earn higher salaries will decrease. This may encourage laziness, thus hampering social development.
In addition, merely narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor fails to ensure social happiness. Other things like improving social facilities, well-fare system and providing more care to the general public will be more efficient to raise people’s sense of happiness. Only by focusing on the well-being of our people so that the sick are treated, the old are cared and the young are educated can we build a more harmonious society.
In conclusion, narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor can reduce people’s sense of deprivation. Nevertheless, this way alone can not ensure a happier society. What we really need to consider is how to improve the well-being of our people instead of just thinking about how to drag down the gap.