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Respond to this discussion
1. Which of the major American values discussed in this chapter (see pages 83-88) lead to support of social welfare policies and which contribute to opposition?
The major American values discussed in this chapter that leads to support of social welfare policies include; Achievement and Success, Activity and Work, Humanitarian Mores, Efficiency and Practicality, Equality, and Nationalism Patriotism. The major American values that contribute to opposition of social welfare policies include; Moral Orientation, Progress, Material Comfort, Freedom, External Conformity, Science and Secular Rationality, Democracy, and Individual Personality. Sociologist Robin Williams, identified 15 major values in the United States society that lead people to support or oppose responses to social welfare policies (Popple & Leighninger, 2019). The values discussed in chapter 5 are not seen to be uniform and concrete, but rather bring forth contradictions and problems for groups of people. Many of the social welfare policies seem to benefit one group of people, while simultaneously disenfranchising others, and this is where the hassle lies for many. For example, on the value of Individual Personality, groups are viewed as a collection of individuals made for the purpose of pushing forward goals of the welfare for an individual. In a group setting, in dealing with social welfare, one may be asked to give up something that’s valuable to them, in the means of helping another person in need. This opposition, among others, is formally the cause of conflict that is seen in light of social values relating to problems for society.
2. Name one value (from this list) that you yourself hold and explain why you hold it. Name one value (from the list) that you do not hold or believe, and explain why you do not hold it.
One value from the list that I hold, is the value of Achievement and Success. I appreciate the work of social welfare policymakers working to instill achievement and success into clients. The value of success is very important in society, and it’s unfortunate that those who don’t measure up to society’s standard of “success” are frowned upon. I believe the core purpose of the social work profession is to help individuals become better and I think the programs that gear towards making that happen are impactful. I think everyone deserves a chance to have success, even in unlikely terms that differ from the way society views success. In addition, I believe the cards your dealt with in life should not determine your skill of success, there’s still more that can change and bring forth achievement despite failure.
One value from the list that I do not hold or believe is the value of Democracy as it relates to minorities. Due to the majority rule, many African Americans, Hispanics, gays, migrant workers, etc have had to suffer on the basis of others not being sensitive to their issues or concerns. Because the decision is up to an entire group of people, even if they are not being directly impacted negatively by the results, it can be harmful to those who may not have a strong say in what’s acceptable or not.
Popple, P. R., Leighninger, L., & Leighninger, R. D. (2019). The
policy-based profession: An Introduction to Social Welfare Policy Analysis for Social Workers (7th ed.).
New York, NY: Pearson.
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