Have Americans Lost Their Empathy in this Recession?

In today’s economy, it seems that everyone is struggling in some way – students are worried about loan debt, homeowners are worried about the value of their homes and everyone seems to be cutting back on some of the finer things in life. In considering that most everyone has had to make some adjustments in the past 5 years, I wonder about American’s level of empathy with each other. Beyond congressional debates about government assistance programs, it has been my observation that many Americans hold the opinion that they have their own problems to worry about, and not enough time or resources to be concerned about others. One controversial area I witness this in is the relationship between the homeless and those of financial means.