Women in today’s society face many adversities. In this essay I will discuss fact versus stereotypical perceptions about the various social and economic problems women must face everyday. I grew up on the Upper East Side in Manhattan mostly comprised of wealthy, socialite families. I attended The Convent of Sacred Heart, also one of the top, private, all girl schools in Manhattan. The majority of the students come from very privileged families and are, more often than not, very spoiled and naïve to the world around them. While I was attending High School, I found it very hard to make friends with some of the students that went to Sacred Heart. I hated the way “rich kids” thought. They always spoke about Welfare and made absurd comments about how it should not exist because the people feeding of their tax dollars were nothing but the bottom-feeders in the world. The people I was surrounded by could never move past the fallacies their parents would talk about. They never realized that many people on welfare struggled. These unfortunate people were not lazy; they weren’t all drug dealers and prostitutes that just kept getting pregnant so that the city would write them a check every month. The only thing they were guilty of was being born a minority and from birth, growing up in some of the worst conditions imaginable.
Over the summer my friend and I decided to join the Coalition for Homeless Women. I learned a lot while visiting the numerous women shelters and I can admit that I too had very stupid and naïve perceptions of some of these women. Even though I was not as “rotten” as some of the girls I attended school with, my parents sheltered me. I will always remember walking down the street one day and as I passed by a homeless woman I handed her my dollar. My father immediately looked at me funny and said “Sonia, you shouldn’t have given her your allowance, she will only use it to buy drugs or alcohol. She will not use it for anything good!” At the age of ten those words resonated in my head for some time. My perception of homeless people was somewhat flawed until I was old enough to understand the world for myself. I was really happy when I visited shelters and spoke to some of these remarkable women. They weren’t on drugs, they weren’t alcoholics, and these are wo...
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...not on welfare do not have more children if they cannot support their families. Middle and Upper class families are paying the government in tax dollars to support mothers who continue to have children even though they know they cannot support themselves. Also, a single mother who chooses to have another child while being on welfare severely decreases her chances to go off welfare because she will need to stay at home with her children. This promotes a woman’s dependency on welfare.
To wrap up my essay, I will simply say that people who continue to talk about welfare in ways that it should be taken away or controlled have not educated themselves enough to fully understand what it is they are talking about. I believe that everyone in the world serves a purpose. The wealthy are not the only people who should have the right to enjoy life. People on welfare, may need help but at least they are trying. To say they are all failures is wrong. The majority of women on welfare face so many problems. People make ludicrous preconceptions about these women. People should open their eyes and realize what really goes on in the world instead of living in on a cloud.
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