ON POVERTY

A fundamental belief of conservatives is the presence of poor people and the presence of hard working decent people who have enough money. The association with laziness and poverty runs through conservative  thinking in the United States of America. Poverty comes in various shapes and forms. There is poverty arising when one loses a job, poverty stemming from having gone into debt, poverty arising from poor health, poverty because one is paid a low wage and the ever  present poverty associated with being a single parent.

Most discussions about poverty assume it is “something” rather than a multitude of “things.” A low cost health system will prevent X number of people from slipping into poverty. Raising wages will enable many to escape poverty. Providing job opportunities for those lacking a job will dramatically reduce poverty, and recognizing that single parents need free day care, and additional support for food, clothing will help reduce poverty.

We have to cease thinking of “poverty” as requiring one thing. One can never end the  concept of poverty, but one can ensure it impacts fewer people.