Archive for January, 2009|Monthly archive page

Good Morning, America?

In Uncategorized on January 24, 2009 at 11:14 pm

Millions of Americans do not wake up to a “good morning”. Many unfortunate citizens do not have food to eat, a place to live, or a job. What’s happening in the world’s most powerful and affluent country when so many families seem to be struggling? It’s quite obvious that the state of the economy is at its worst point since the Great Depression. However, poverty has been around hundreds of years (even before the current economic debacle)! As stated in my mission statement, the purpose of this blog will not be to persuade an individual to address poverty in any certain way. The very mentioning of the word “poverty” should cause one to head to America’s streets and end this social dilemma—no persuasion necessary! Francis Bacon stated that “Knowledge is power”. My job is to enable you to become a more informed citizen regarding this subject matter. We cannot address an issue if we know nothing about it.

So, here are some quick, basic facts:

  • Poverty in the United States is cyclical in nature with roughly 12% to 17% living below the federal poverty line at any given point in time (J.E. Schwartz 2005).
  • Most Americans (58.5%) will spend at least one year below the poverty line at some point between ages 25 and 75. (Michal Zweig 2004).
  • The current poverty threshold is measured according to the Health and Human Services poverty guideline. With the exception of Hawaii and Alaska (who construct their own poverty thresholds), an individual making less than $10,400 is considered impoverished. For each additional person in a family unit, adding $3,600 to the base income will determine if a family is deemed impoverished.