Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Is It Possible to End Poverty in Our Nation?

             The liberty principle for this Freedom Friday is that welfare should be a temporary safety net and not a permanent way of life. There are principles that apply to prospering in life, and they do not include getting a government. However, there are millions of people who experience adversity and made need a hand up.

            Politicians seek to bring more equality into the nation. One of those politicians was President Lyndon B. Johnson who sought to end poverty, reduce crime, abolish inequality, and improve the environment. He set in motion his plan in May 1964 when he introduced his “Great Society” agenda. It was “the largest social reform plan in modern history,” and conservatives have been trying to eliminate its bad consequences for decades.

            President Donald Trump knows that federal handouts are not meant to lift people out of poverty, so he worked to bring about real reform. He signed an executive order in 2018, “Reducing Poverty in America by Promoting Opportunity and Economic Mobility.” Forefront in his call for reforms was a call to promote and strengthen marriage. Anyone may wonder, “what does marriage have to do with reforming welfare.” In an article titled “Why Marriage Matters,” W. Bradford Wilcox shared the following information.

Brookings scholars Ron Haskins and Isabel Sawhill have identified the “success sequence,” through which young adults who follow three steps – getting at least a high school degree, then working full time, and then marrying before having any children, in that order – are very unlikely to become poor. In fact, 97 percent of Millennials who have followed the success sequence are not in poverty by the time they reach the ages of 28 to 34.

Sequence-following Millennials are also markedly more likely to flourish financially than their peers taking different paths; 89 percent of 28- to 34-year-olds who have followed the sequence stand at the middle or upper end of the income distribution, compared with just 59 percent of Millennials who missed one or two steps in the sequence. The formula even works for young adults who have faced heavier odds, such as Millennials who grew up poor, or black Millennials; despite questions regarding socioeconomic privilege, our research suggests that the success sequence is associated with better outcomes for everyone.

            The sequence for success is education, full time work, marriage, and children. Why is the order important? Without at least a high school diploma, most people will have a difficult time earning enough money to provide for themselves. Higher education or higher training of some sort usually brings more job security and higher incomes. When an individual has a way to provide for themselves, they are better prepared for marriage and family.

            There are too many people in our nation who have a child or several children without the benefit of education, a good paying job, and marriage and then end up living in poverty and relying on handouts from the government. To be compassionate, some government officials have advocated for single mothers to receive a certain amount per child, and this policy almost guarantees more children born into poverty. Other government officials advocated no work requirement to receive federal welfare. This policy led to more able-bodied people living in poverty on government handouts.

            Education, work, and marriage are three principles that are almost guaranteed to lift people out of poverty. When anyone of them are missing, times are tough. When we allow people to easily and/or permanently live on the efforts of other people, we take away their incentive to do something for themselves.

            I do not believe that we can end poverty completely because Jesus Christ once said that we will always have poor among us. However, we can make welfare a temporary condition and keep it as a safety net. Our goal should be to decrease the number of people living in poverty and help them to make poverty a short-lived condition rather than a way of life.


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