Hello, I selected 35,000-45,000 but we barely squeak into that bracket before taxes. I think the bell curve may reflect the economic inequality built into American society. There are lot of people living on too little, and some who have more than they need, and the middle class is shrinking.
My husband and I have crept out of poverty - it's been a long, rough road - and I feel very lucky to have kitchen cupboards full of food, mittens on the kids, petfood for the cats, no harrassing calls from bill collectors, and $27 leftover until payday. We haven't always been so fortunate.
Many people in the U.S. are attempting to live and raise families on the so-called "minimum wage" which basically means you work and work for subsistence, and rarely enjoy having everything you need to live. I think it's important that those of us who are more fortunate keep the needy in mind.
To me, as a stay-at-home parent, as long as the bills don't outpace our income, it is a wonderful thing to be able to have the time to nurture my family. I can play guitar or do some sewing, get online, or read a book to the kids, or whatever. Time is precious, more precious than money, but only if you have enough money to meet your needs.
I feel sad that so many familes put the priority solely on work, leaving the children unattended and unsupervised, unmentored. I think that the young generation is suffering badly from parental inattention. Many people, both mothers and fathers, are working long hours just to be able to afford to live. This is the age of drop-offs, latch key kids, and school as daycare. It's a shame . The "bell curve" is unfair.