“The ideal of an ‘American way of life’ is fading as the working class falls further away from institutions like marriage and religion and the upper class becomes more isolated,” writes Charles Murray in The Wall Street Journal.
He defines the “white upper middle class” as people age 30-49 with at least a college education working in managerial jobs or high-status professions, and the “white working class” as people age 30-49 with no more than a high-school education in blue-collar, low-skill or service jobs. Here are some data points:
- From 1960 to 2010, the total number married fell 11 percentage points among the upper middle class (from 94% to 83%), but fell 36 percentage points for the working class (from 84% to 48%).
- Males without jobs rose 3 percentage points among the upper middle class (from 9% to 12%), but doubled (from 10% to 20%) for the working class.
- Secularism rose 11 percentage points (from 29% to 40%) for the upper middle class, but rose 21 percentage points (from 38% to 59%) for the working class.