The "poor" buy toys at Christmas! Since when?
They beg them from Toys for Tots or some other charity. The "poor" go from give away to give away. Then the parents take the toys and sell them for crack.
I'm not going to claim that there aren't somepeople who waste their money, there are, but they don't represent everyone who is struggling.
If a child lives in the projects, or lives motel to motel, or lives in areas that are infested with crime, where do they play?But don't give me this guff about buying an XBox just to keep a kid away from crackheads. Being a responsible parent keeps kids away from crackheads.
They take 10 steps outside their front door and they will find drug dealers.
I've lived in areas like that when I was young and I know many people who live like that today. In some areas, just being outside of your home is a dangerous place for kids.
Suppose a single mother is working double shifts, or long hours (or hell even normal hours) at her low-paying job, who is protecting those children?
They can't afford babysitters, so often times the kids are left alone, with a young teen sibling watching over them. This isn't what the parents want, but they don't have options that middle class people do.
That's a good idea, but a lot of these low-income families don't have cars, they walk to work or rely on public transportation and taking their kids to another location that may not be close to their job as a means of alternative babysitting isn't realistic. A lot of therse children have behavioral problems too. Children who don't have a steady home life, who face family financial troubles and know that they are poor often times act out in ways that gets them in trouble. They aren't "bad", they just aren't mature enough yet to cope with their lives. Parents who work multiple low-paying jobs are often times under extreme stress themselves, they aren't professional therapists and they sure as hell can't affod to see any.If you want to entertain a kid, take him to the library
It's not uncommon that the kids who need places like libraries the most are kicked out.
and do you know how much games cost? $60 a pop.
When you buy them new. There's no reason to assume these people get a new game every week from best buy. A kid may get a handheld gaming system like a PSP from a resell shop like Goodwill, they may get 1 or two games from their parents throughout the year, also from resell shops. Charities often donates these toys to needy families as well. Sometimes other family members pitch in for the kid, with aunts and uncles or grandparents throwing $10 each for a game.
It may not be necessary for survival, I'll grant you that, but suggesting that these people are living it up throwing hundreds of dollars left and right for toys and games, because like just like living in motels is absurd.
I did grow up in a bad neighborhood, and my family didn't have money. There were gangs around, there was violence. I saw a man get shot at a very young age right outside of my home. There was a damn good reason for my parents to do everything they could to keep me inside. My dad had to make my toys himself, welding them out of pieces of scrap metal, and I was given books to read. Every now and then I'd get a nice toy and I can't describe how happy I was.Oh, and gaming systems are luxuries. We didn't have these things growing up and we didn't hang around with gangs. You're just copping out and making excuses.
Children growing up like that often have no real childhood, they are forced to grow depressed and jaded before they are even 10 and it's common that they fall into the bad environment that is all around them. Often times poor parents are just trying to give their kids a little piece of childhood by giving them toys.
It's sad to see how eager everyone is to comdemn the poor, when in the end it's children who suffer the most from it.
Some poor parents are sometimes able, (not always though), to put aside $10 each paycheck for a few months in order to buy their kid a once-a-year Christmas present.
Other struggling families are not able to. If someone gets sick or some other unexpected expense comes up that whole plan is scrapped.
That .00000001% is something you just pulled out of thin air. There are numbers out there, and granted the numbers are a little fuzzy sometimes and often times the same number means different things in different circumstances, but to take a little uncertainty and run with it to assume that almost nobody is actually poor is a little silly.
First of all, the number you cited there is 1 billionth of 1 percent.
That means out of 350 million people, 1% if that is 3.5 Million, and 1 billionth of that is 0.0035 of a single person. If we round up that is 4 one thousanths of a single person, perhaps one of their hairs? That means that if the US population was 4 thousand times larger, we'd have a single poor person.
I know you didn't mean that number exactly, but it illustrates your mindset. In your mind, a very rough estimate of US poverty is that if you got the US demographics, increased it to a population of 1 and a half trillion people, that a single person would be poor.
You don't want to believe there are people who are struggling, or if you do, you must believe it is 100% thier own fault, because you have this naive notion that the world is just, the world is fair, and anyone who is in a bad situation is there because they deserve it.
2nd, it's easy to be poor even if you have a little money. A very basic 1 or 2 bedroom apartment for a family in a city can cost between $700 and $1200 a month, to even qualify to move in, you have to pass credit checks which may be difficult for a truly struggling family. Assuming they have good enough credit to qualify, most places require proof of income that exceeds 3 times the monthly rental cost, which can mean around $3,000 per month.
Assuming full time 40-hour a week work (which is often times unavailable, with many struggling parents being forced to take part-time jobs), that comes out to $18.75 per hour, or as little as $13 per hour.
So if we take a single parent in a city, just to get approved for a basic apartment can cost up to $18 an hour. If we have a woman working at Jack in the Box, or waiting tables at a diner, or cleaning motel rooms, she quite simply isn't going to make enough money for a secure home.
So she may be bringing home a regular paycheck, but she can't afford a home, she may have to live in motels, find roommates (and adult roommates can be dangerous when they have kids). ect.
Sure making $200 a week would be great for a poor family in ethopia, but in the United States that simply isn't enough to make it. Add in the crime, drugs, and problems that come with American poor neighborhoods, and it stops being about comfort, it's about safety..
"True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring. ”
― Martin Luther King Jr.
I worked hard throughout my life. Throughout high school and college I worked non-stop. Fast food, factories, outside in the brutal Texas heat, and more cushy environments like research labs and academic settings.
My family was the working poor when I was a child, and today I'm more comfortable. However, I'm not going to pat myself on the back and say "well if you are poor that's just because you aren't as smart or hard working as I am!". That is cruel, that is wrong. Other members of my family didn't do so well, some did. Several people that I knew growing up in my neighborhood and school are dead today.
There were some aspects of the system that were stacked against me, and there were some aspects of the system that helped me to do better in life. In many cases I was simply lucky. I've known people who worked far harder than me their entire lives and never got to where I am today, because of factors out of their control. I count myself very lucky, and it's important for me to give back, but it's even more important to try to change the system so that people who are struggling actually have a fair shot.
This meritocracy nonsense is just masturbation for people who desperately need to feel good about themselves.
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