Essay on The Poverty Of Poverty And Poverty

Essay on The Poverty Of Poverty And Poverty

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As the number of people living in poverty increases every year, the need for assistance also increases. According to the National Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness, the national poverty rate reached 13.2% in 2013. This means that one in seven Americans are at risk of suffering from hunger. The increased cost of living and high unemployment rate force about 3.5 million people to make the streets their home (“Overview). Although everyone living in poverty needs assistance, the general public tends to separate the homeless into groups towards whom they should or should not show compassion. In an article for Newsweek magazine, journalist Stuart Bykofsky divided the homeless into three groups: “(1) the economically distressed, who would work if they could find work, (2) the mentally ill, who can’t work, and (3) the alcoholic, the drug-addicted, and others who won’t work” (Wright 64). However, this division is problematic because these three groups are not all-inclusive; each homeless person has his or her own reason for being homeless. While some people separate the homeless into groups, others view them as an undifferentiated group. They have given in to the connotation that all homeless people are homeless on their own accord. Although people in the middle and upper classes are more fortunate than the homeless, they still have to work to pay bills and to support a decent life. To the more fortunate, this is an excuse for their avoidance of responsibility towards the poor.
A photo taken during the 2012 New York Fashion Week has raised controversy over the topic of indifference to poverty. It portrays the general public’s attitude towards the familiar sight of a homeless person. The photo shows three models posing for a...


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...d work does not always pay off.
To avoid the responsibility of helping the poor, most people have come up with easy solutions such as ignorance or hostility. The photo of three models posing for a picture next to a homeless man portrays the general public’s attitude toward the poor. Although the other people in the photo see him, they simply choose to overlook the sight of a homeless old man sitting on dirty stairs. Nonetheless, there are no easy or inexpensive solutions to homelessness. It is a combination of various problems: unemployment, cutbacks in social welfare, substance abuse, mental health, as well as other problems. Hostility to the poor is not the proper response. Being unkind towards a disabled Vietnam veteran, a family whose father has lost his job, or a mentally ill man does not come easily to most people. It is also not the solution to homelessness.

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