Breaking the Cycle of Poverty

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Progressives have been pioneering innovative solutions to the problem of poverty for centuries, but sadly a large proportion of the world and America still lives below the poverty line. Lower income communities in America are plagued by gangs and drugs that besiege them night and day, and as if that isn’t enough, minorities in these communities are frequently victims of police racism. Young adults in minority communities are often sent to prison and get criminal records, which limits their opportunities for life. Women are systematically repressed in America, and still earn significantly less than men. In addition, women are grossly under-represented in Math, Science and Engineering degrees, which limits their career options even further.  All of these factors reinforce the vicious cycle of poverty, and the task of breaking this cycle seems insurmountable to many. However, progressives have highlighted many practical steps we can all take to end poverty once and for all.

Economic Empowerment

Disadvantaged youths in poor areas and developing countries have little hope in today’s capitalistic profit driven-world. In a world ruled by corporations, uneducated minorities have no value and privileged white children from two-parent households are swiftly escorted into the higher ranks of society. It’s all part of what economists call the “Chain Effect”. Children from disadvantaged backgrounds and single mother households get lower grades because of poverty, and therefore do not get accepted into top colleges, which limits their opportunities in the workplace. We simply have to break this chain. Colleges need to be forced to accept students with lower grades so that they have an opportunity to move up in society. If we limit college to only those from privileged backgrounds, then there is absolutely no way for poor people to move up in the world. College elitism is not only unfair – it is also racist and sexist, as it leads to huge racial and gender disparities in education, which then filter through into the economy.

Community Programs

Progressives have been very active in supporting youth programs that give hope to disadvantaged communities. These programs include music classes, sports lessons and general fun and games to give talented but disadvantaged youths a chance to move up in life. There have been innovative programs that teach youths in South America how to play a musical instrument. This allowed youths who had never even seen a musical instrument before to play at a professional level, which was heart warming to see. Other programs have taken a different approach by giving free soccer lessons to kids in Africa – not only does this give them the opportunity to learn a new sport, they are also learning coordination and social skills, and who knows, maybe one of these kids will end up in the Premier League in 10 years’ time. You never know what is going to happen when you give hope to a child – these experiences could be the turning point in many of these children’s lives. I’m also a big fan of youth talent shows in poor American neighborhoods – it’s simply amazing how much talent you find in disadvantaged communities when you provide them with an opportunity to perform in front of a live audience.

Raising Awareness

A big part of the problem of poverty is that people are simply unaware of extent of the issue, and simply stand by while governments ignore the people who need them the most. Liberals have been proactive in spreading awareness of poverty, to encourage people to pressurize their governments to do something about it. The Live 8 concert is probably the best example of an awareness raising event, which saw pop giants from all over the world come together to give one of the most kick-ass awareness concerts we have ever seen. The Live 8 concert was strictly about awareness, so no money was raised and the concerts were free, as music should be. As a result of the Live 8 concerts, third world governments were relieved of billions of dollars’ worth of crippling debt and received a doubling in foreign aid, which allowed them to get back on their feet and start fighting poverty again.

So far we’ve made a lot of progress, but all of this costs money, so we desperately need more people to write to their congressmen and ask them to fund more of these programs. As the west experiences economic turbulence, we must not forget about those who need us the most. We must keep doing what we are doing, as people all around the world are counting on us. It is up to us to be vigilant, and make sure that nobody gets left behind in the progressive revolution.

1 COMMENT

  1. “congressmen” ahem. How about congresspersons? These sexist speech code violations are at the heart of generational poverty. I would love to see legislation passed at the national level to correct this type of injustice once and forever. It’s high time we released our children and fathers and sisters from American prisons and fill them with speech violators and the unjustly privileged instead!

    • Apologies for my unacceptable sexist language – you are absolutely right to call me out on that. Yes, I hope to live to see the day when the tables are turned on the privileged. The reality is that it is you and I who should be behind bars, while the undeserved and downtrodden move up in the world. That is true justice – and it is up to us, and us alone, to make it a reality.

    • This is one of the most ridiculous and unreal statements I have ever seen made. Can you please in so many words explain yourself in some sort of rational manner? What your are saying makes no sense.

      In fact, what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this chat room is now dumber for having read it.

  2. To fulfill the imperatives of providing economic empowerment and community programs for the disadvantaged in America, American voters would do well to elect a President who has experience as a community activist and is a person of color. Think of what could be accomplished if such a person became President.

    Oh. Yeah. Um. Gee. Obama? What happened?

    • Puzzled, you have got it wrong.

      Totally wrong.

      “Obama” you ask? Our half-white President has absolutely no concept of the abject poverty and misery suffered by the people of color. How could he have the slightest empathy with any of these people? Pleeeeze… Obama has done absolutely nothing to further the plight of the poor and dispossessed.

      He, as a half-white, scorns them and ignores their pleas for assistance. A lame duck extraordinaire!

      If the neocultural narrative holds, the subject is contextualised into a structural discourse that includes reality as a totality.

      We have to choose between capitalist precultural theory and textual situationism. However, the Constitution is capable of significant form, given that the premise of neocultural depatriarchialism is invalid.

      In a sense, the subject of poverty is interpolated into a semiotic discourse that includes narrativity as a paradox.

      • … – to undo the more than 400 years of socio-economic *VIOLENCE* done to people of color, i conservatively estimate that only a 16,384%-black chief exec’ will ever be able to budge the issue, at this juncture…

  3. Great to see you back on form MDB.

    We need to do everything we can to get kids from disadvantaged backgrounds into education programs but that’s only one side of the coin.

    It’s time to start looking at restricting college access for the well-off. Why the hell should Harvard and Yale be filled with upper class kids who’ve already had thousands of dollars spent on their education?

    The American education system is nothing more than a feedback loop for producing inequality. The only way to fix it is by removing the racist, classist idea of ‘grades’ and allocating access to education based on need rather than “ability” (to pay!)

    • I full heartedly agree Chauncy. Grades are a prejudicial artifact of the white patriarchy, and have no place in a 21st century multicultural liberal democracy. Grades simply reinforce the idea that some people are simply ‘better’ than others, and that success should be determined by ability. Elitism breeds inequality and resentment; what we need is a truly egalitarian education system that does not shut out downtrodden members of society, but instead lifts them up and breaks the cycle of poverty. This will also stimulate economic growth by enriching the diversity of our economy and bringing new ideas and perspectives to the table.

  4. You cannot win this battle on one front, restricting the access of the privileged classes to education will not be enough. The government must lead from the front on this issue. All public sector employers should greatly increase their intake of workers from disadvantaged backgrounds and ignore social constructs like criminal records. This would lead to amazing diversity and cohesion in the work place, which in turn would pay dividends in productivity.

    • Completely agree. And how about we go one step further and stop sending these kids to prison in the first place? Most of the incarcerations are due to police racism anyway, which is absolutely rife in America. How can we expect disadvantaged youths to do well in society when we’re giving them criminal records?!

      • MDB, you have hit the target dead centre, as per usual.

        Why should the young and dispossessed be sent to gaol? As you so rightly point out, this just reeks of police racism, but not only the police, but prosecutors, judges, and the entire Administration.

        In the works of Adam Smith, a predominant concept is the concept of subsemantic sexuality.

        Smith (and The Invisible Hand) is the apparent guiding light for the systematic plunderers of society, the capital class.

        Marx’s analysis of capitalist discourse suggests that sexual identity, somewhat ironically, has substantial significance. Thus, an abundance of narratives concerning dialectic postmodern theory exist, especially when contemplating incarceration as punishment as opposed to rehabilitation.

        This is particularly relevant when someone talks about “sharing a cell with Bubba”, meaning:

        (1) sharing a prison cell with a person of color;
        (2) who is enormous and physically intimidating to a new cell-mate; and
        (3) is likely to enjoy playing “Mummahs an de Pappahs” with the new inmate, all night long.

        The characteristic theme of textual materialism is a self-sufficient paradox. The use of dialectic postmodern theory is specifically aimed to attack class.

        By “class”, we can all safely assume that this is code for the black/white dichotomy.

        If the subtextual paradigm of capitalist narrative holds, we have to choose between dialectic postmodern theory and patriarchial discourse. In this sense, the term ‘capitalist discourse’ denotes the defining characteristic, and subsequent dialectic, of neodialectic society.

        In other words, sending kids to gaol (especially if they are people of color) is not a desirable outcome.

        Keep up the Lord’s work, MDB!

    • – we could even send all white workers on furlough for, oh… – the next century, or so… – should give the economy and employment demographics sufficient time to rebalance nicely…