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poverty final paper - Nakul Shah Poverty in the US Final...

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Nakul Shah Poverty in the US Final Exam Essay The endemic of poverty in the United States has been prevalent throughout the nation’s history and must be addressed on various fronts to be completely understood. In order to effectively minimize the number of individuals and families living in poverty and potentially eradicate the problem in the United States, poverty must first be understood from a historical perspective. You must then understand the various individuals living in poverty and how they have gotten there. You can then attempt to create anti- poverty legislation and ways for people to escape the grips of poverty and the life associated with it. The following briefing on poverty in our nation will explore poverty from various aspects in an attempt to create the correct legislation to help those in poverty, as well as the many that face the prospects of future poverty. Past administrations have failed to target poverty, such as the Bush administration’s family structure programs and marriage incentives, or the PRWORA under the Regan administration. We will attempt to eradicate poverty effectively and permanently. American poverty differs from that in other nations based on a historical attitude toward poverty and the impoverished. Feelings toward poverty in the United Sates are based on the Protestant belief that hard work pays. The distinction between the deserving and undeserving poor came about at this time, where those in poverty were seen as lazy and did not want to work. If American sentiment toward poverty is based on the nation’s original inhabitants, poverty policy will reflect this notion of anti-aid policy. The belief in an undeserving poor has evolved over time to what is now seen as a character flaw of the poor. Many believe that impoverished individuals do not want to work, and prefer to collect welfare checks and spend what they have on alcohol and drugs. There is a misconception that these “welfare queens” have many children and have no intention of working, while the fathers are absent and have not taught their children how to obey authority.
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The flawed character theory of poverty is closely related to a culture of poverty, which is associated with high concentrations of poor individuals in an area. This culture of poverty, alcohol, sex and drugs, is what many believe perpetuates poverty and causes an intergenerational transfer of poverty.
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