Saturday, May 19, 2012

Something to Think About

I had to take sociology this semester, which is the study of how different societies are created as well as their structure. In all honesty, it was probably one of the most boring classes I've ever taken, BUT once in a while our ancient professor gave an interesting lecture.
He spent one lecture talking about the disparities between our urban society (Chicago) and the societies of the rest of the world. Some of the statistics he gave were truly shocking, and I think everyone should be aware of them. These statistics all come from the World Health Organization.

  • When you look at the world's population, 80% live in substandard living conditions
  • 1/6 of the world’s population is unable to read and write
  • 50% of the world’s population suffers from malnutrition
  • Only 1% of the world’s population has a computer
  • Over 1/2 of world’s population exist in relative poverty
  • 1/7 of the world’s population (1.1 billion people) live in absolute poverty (meaning no food, just trying to survive)
  • 7 million +  in US have no jobs
  • The majority of world’s population live on less than $2 per day
  • 6% of the world's population own 59% of the wealth in the world
  • 1 million people in the world will not survive until the end of the week
  • We are richer than 75% of the population if we have a roof over our heads and a place to sleep
  • If you have money in the bank, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy
These statistics really put things into perspective for me. I'm assuming that if you're reading this, you have a computer. Therefore, you are part of the top 1% of the world. Next time I complain that I don't have something, I'm going to come back to this post and realize what a lucky person I am, compared to the rest of the world.



  1. I couldn't believe only 1% has a computer. But then I thought of some difficult conditions in Asia or Africa... and that might be true, but 1%? sounds really little... If this is really accurate, we live in a sick world and mostly can't do much about it... So sad..

    1. I thought it sounded a little low too. Even if it's not accurate, it's still ridiculous how there are people in the world dying of starvation and those of us in 1st world countries can't even fathom it--we instead freak out when our computers stop working.

  2. Very thought provoking--thanks for posting, Becky!

  3. This is very hard hitting. I never stopped to think about how lucky I am to be in that top 8%. This really put things in perspective.

    1. I know, we never really stop to think about what's going on outside of our own country. That's why I really liked learning these statistics...they make you stop and think.

  4. These statistics are outdated I believe... The US unemployment rate is way higher than 7mil


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