#TheNewMiddle: Tell Us What The Middle Class Means To You

Jul 14, 2016
Originally published on August 1, 2016 9:07 am
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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Here at ALL THINGS CONSIDERED we've been exploring what it means to be middle-class in America today.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Economists say to be considered middle-class, a family of three needs to earn about $40,000 to $120,000 a year. Next week we'll visit one of the places where the middle class has shrunk faster than almost anywhere else in the country - Midland, Texas. As in many parts of the U.S., the middle class has shrunk in Midland because people there have gotten richer.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: That's not to say that I'll be a millionaire next week or next year, but I feel that the momentum is coming. And I feel like I'm kind of at that tipping point where all the momentum up until this point is kind of getting ready to tip me over.

SIEGEL: Well, now we want to know what your middle class experience is like. On Twitter, some of you talked about being able to pay off your debts or having extra money for vacations. For St. Edwards University professor Chris Gerben, being middle-class means relocating for jobs. He's lived in five states in the last 15 years.

SHAPIRO: And to 42-year-old high school teacher Andrew Larson, middle class means working during summer vacations to help pay for his children's college tuition. Join our conversation. We're @NprATC, and use the hashtag #TheNewMiddle. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.