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Starvation and the Morally Impoverished

Updated on November 24, 2011

Being Poor vs. Impovrishment of the Soul

There is this misguided concept, promulgated by conservatives, positing that churches (or simply the charitable at heart) will take care of the needy. Socialized programs focusing on the disadvantaged are unnecessary, or so they say. Politicians who proffer this response appear maladroit, out of touch, and aged.

We are no longer living in a country where churches can afford the cost of health care for people in trouble. With the country's economic downturn, the churches can barely manage to keep afloat let alone foot the bill for ailing individuals. The conservative response is naive to the point of being irresponsible and delusional. The knee-jerk reaction of their audience is frightening and highlights a total lack of realism. If the physically impaired are left to the support of charitable sources, we will start to see corpses on our lawns and staircases.

The capitalists would enjoy seeing us turn into a country of tight-wads -- a fearful mob that lives in a constant state of anxiety that if we lose another dollar for the most basic social service, we will all become destitute.

There are real-life stories of some Jews in Hitler's camps who had to hide their piece of bread for fear that their other starving fellows might simply steal crumbs that didn't belong to them. This is no slam against the Jews. Many individuals under similar circumstances would think about their own survival first. The starving have been known to cannibalize the dead. The capitalists would have us believe that we are indeed on the brink of starvation, and this psychological manipulation has caused a lot of people to adopt a cannibalistic frame of mind.

So many people have been brainwashed into feeling impoverished or threatened by the under-class, the capitalists have us just where they want us -- fearful, desperate, willing to "eat the wounded" just to maintain the lifestyles many see being nibbled at around the edges. The mere possibility of an extra tax being applied to the top-tier of our society has created a mind-set of stinginess and protectiveness among the upper-middle class -- all the way to the "filthy rich."

Unless you are earning well upwards of $200K annually, your fears are misplaced. A revision to the tax code would be aimed at corporations and non-millionaires would hardly feel a pinch. Yet, political rhetoric would have us believe that those of us in the mid-to-lower middle class and the poor will have to share our unsustainable crust with people touted as being somehow unworthy -- and that is (and always has been) the brilliance of disinformation/propaganda. This wild, exaggerated hoax of needing to horde and guard our slice of bread is a powerful fable.

The scapegoats are the indigent, or even a hypothetical person who is conveniently being labeled as "irresponsible" for not having tucked away sufficient crumbs to care for himself/herself at a point of helplessness. The fact is that we are not imprisoned in an internment camp or gulag and we have not reached a level of starvation. If you have a loaf of bread, do not begrudge sharing a slice with someone whose life depends upon it. If you own an entire bakery, give away as much as you can -- and it matters not whether this be through a voluntary charitable outlet or through a government-mandated requirement. Do not buy into this capitalistic scare tactic. Replace your fear with generosity and benevolence. You will not end up starving.

Do not disdain the beggar -- as you have not lived in his/her shoes. If you are a Christian you may understand that the beggar could be Christ himself, testing your level of charity, materialism and self-sacrifice. You have seen pictures and icons of Jesus with a bleeding heart? Conservatives love to use the term "bleeding heart liberal." Given the symbolism behind this form of ridicule speaks volumes about the generosity of some conservatives. The bleeding heart is a symbol of love.

Even if you are an atheist, you know that you cannot take your croissants into the next world. Turning this simple moral lesson into a contest of gladiators is a diversion purposely established by those whose hearts have become the size, color and shape of a dried raisin.

If you have no faith in Christ, at least look to his words of wisdom. Look to the words of the Buddha. Look to the words of Lao Tzu. A house divided cannot stand, and that is the precipice we are nearing with so much in-fighting and raw emotionalism. All of us like to blame the government for its foibles, deceit and incompetence, but understand WE are the government. The government is a mere microcosm of ourselves. If it has become dysfunctional, we MUST set aside ideological differences and reclaim some level of civility. If not this then what is the alternative?

Are our minds so limited, so filled with misplaced rage that we are willing to forfeit our unrealized superior potential and allow a soulless few guide us into endless bickering, an endless blindness that provides us with little (or no) hope for a more peaceful, equitable and just tomorrow?


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    • rjbatty profile image

      rjbatty 22 months ago from Irvine

      Tamarawilhite: You haven't been at the bottom of the American trash heap, obviously. The average allotment for food stamp recipients is about $200 per month for a family of two. This allows you to buy nothing but the very, very basics.

      No one has been able to show that two people can actually exist on $100 per month. Food stamps even exclude things like toilet paper, any kind of over-the-counter medicine (such as Tums/Rolaids or cough drops), shampoo, and everything else that isn't immediately consumable.

      In my county you can't use food stamps to even buy a macaroni salad from the deli section of the grocery store -- why? You got me.

      The government wants you buying bags of rice and a few loafs of bread, and that's about it.

      So, don't talk about subjects in which you have no personal experience. You just come off looking like a common dullard, another bought-and-sold fool of the government-controlled media.

      You point to obesity as if it were an indicator that our poor are flourishing. They aren't. They are eating cheap, inappropriate foods -- and this has nothing to do with their overall health and stability within our society. Because the poor have such lousy provisions and end up obese, this will actually cost the country additional millions in health care costs -- because as of yet -- we still can't quite stand seeing people dying on our lawns.

      Oh yeah, it's fine to compare American poor with those in worse conditions living in the sub-continents. Would it make you feel better if you saw flies crawling on the faces of our emaciated young? Would it? Would it make you feel better about your tax dollars if you saw America's poor crawling through trash piles? Is that what you expect to see in order to be convinced there is a real crisis occurring? Is that what you want America to resemble?

      Your ignorance on the subject is a testimony to the complacency of so many Americans who (based on nothing) assume that the poor in this country are actually fine and dandy. Try living on nothing but oatmeal for a couple of months. Try working three jobs. Try living on the streets, you SOB then come back and tell me how privileged our poor are compared to third-world countries. You know nothing and have displayed that very well.

    • tamarawilhite profile image

      Tamara Wilhite 5 years ago from Fort Worth, Texas

      We should recognize that there are no starving people in the United States to match the pictures of starving Ethiopian children. There are no people picking trash in hopes of finding their next meal as exist in South America and India.

      We are so rich as a nation that one of our leading problems is obesity, a problem greater for those who are "poor".

      Our poor are among the to 90% in the world, from subsidized housing to food stamps.