The United States has long been characterized as a land of opportunity—a place where hard work and ingenuity allow a person to rise, a place where merit trumps birth status. But Americans are increasingly skeptical that life will be better for the next generation—and with good reason.

Recent research suggests the U.S. is a country in which destiny is too often determined by zip code. For example, research by Harvard economist Raj Chetty shows that in many areas of the Midwest and South, less than 5 percent of children will move from the bottom to the top of the socioeconomic ladder.

By: Steve Glickman and John Lettieri, The Daily Beast

Read the full article here.

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