Sunday, July 28, 2013

Feeding the poor

What does it mean to feed the poor? Give them food, right? with the abundance of food in this country and so many others throughout the world, there should be enough food to feed everyone and still have a surplus. Transporting the food is sometimes a problem and that issue should be remedied as soon as possible. On the other hand, when it comes to the poor, are they being removed (at least in this country, the United States) from the natural course of events in life? So many times we hear of someone who worked themselves up from being poor to being a complete success financially. A musician from a few decades ago, Liberace, was born and raised poor. His mother worked at minimum wage and often less than that and received a very small amount of help from the government to get by. Liberace, even in those conditions managed to learn to play the piano and became a huge success and made a ton of money. when he became well off financially he repaid the government for any assistance his mother received, plus interest. He was grateful it was there when they needed it but he didn't want to be responsible for someone else not getting assistance when he reaped the benefit of it. That was true integrity in my opinion. Who else have you heard of that grew up on assistance and repaid it when they became reasonably well off?

The natural course of life for the poor is that they are challenged to improve their lot in life by trying harder despite the hardships. When I was a kid, we were poor. We were told by our parents that if we wanted something more, we should work hard to get it. "Work first, play second!" We could have anything we wanted if we wanted to pay the price for it. We wore second hand clothes, and had fun shopping for them at the second hand store. There was no shame in being poor, wearing second hand clothes or playing with second hand toys we were told, only in not striving to do better. getting better things took work and effort, it was our incentive to be poor. I'm not poor now, I didn't raise my family poor either. There are still things I'd like to have but can't afford. That's life to me.

I wonder if some of the people I see that are living on assistance understand how it works. Niki shoes, Approved sports team sweat shirts, Guchi hand bags, jewelry, tattoos and piercings all over their bodies, 3 bedroom town houses paid for by the government, government provided education and child care and still no job in sight or the desire to get one.

I believe in proper aid to the poor. I wonder if we haven't created a culture of being poor with everything they ever wanted without working for it. It's a quandary worth investigating. It's my understanding that about 48% of the American citizenship is on some type of assistance. Almost half of us. How long can that go on? Is there a limit to what is considered proper giving? Or, in the case of the government, dividing and spreading the wealth. Yup! I think we should study what we are doing there.
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