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Poverty’s Conundrum

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Poverty’s Conundrum

Cora Perry, Writer

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Despite all of the problems it creates and the drastic number of people it affects, many hardly notice the people who struggle with poverty everyday. Poverty and its effects are constantly touching people globally. Many children are born into a low income family and suffer from this setback for the rest of their lives. Once born into such a hardship, it can be difficult for one to overcome such an epidemic. Impoverished children need extra hope and help from outside their home to give them the push they need to escape such a repetitive cycle.

Growing up in poverty is not so rare as everyone may think. KARK News found that in 2008, there were 28,000 children living in poverty in Arkansas– that’s almost 10 times the number of students at Bryant High School. Although it is not spoken about often, poverty can and will affect a significant percentage of the children we see every day.

Children and teens who live in poverty often act out as a sign of mental health issues, causing them to make mistakes which can alter their image for life. According to Vittana, children who grow up in a poverty-ridden area are more likely to have a criminal record than  children who grew up in an area with a higher income bracket. Children who are affected by poverty will often let it change the way they function in society for the rest of their lives.

Along with financial struggles and mental health issues, the success of a child’s education can also be altered by poverty. According to Urban Institute, children growing up in poverty are 43 percent more likely to not graduate from a four-year-college. When someone is born into poverty, it can be more difficult for them to overcome financial struggles, causing them to follow in their parent’s footsteps and continue the cycle. When a child is put into a mindset of financial instability at birth, their future is already shaped for the worse because of it.

Often in society, the negative problems we see are ignored and swept under the rug. Poverty affects thousands, yet many don’t even know the problems it creates for their neighbors. Poverty is an epidemic that can ruin a child’s life if the proper justifications are not taken. The more in the dark we become on this issue, the more that affected children and teens will be ignored. The only solution we have to such an issue is to get people informed and involved. The more we talk about it, the faster information can spread and the more help we can give. If you are one of the individuals who is currently struggling with poverty, don’t become a victim of cycle. You are not you situation, and focusing on a long term goal can help focus on your future rather than your present.

 

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1 Comment

One Response to “Poverty’s Conundrum”

  1. Natasha A. on February 4th, 2019 11:32 am

    It’s unfortunate that many people dismiss those in poverty using justifications from social darwinism. This lack of empathy for other people is simply staggering to me. Hopefully someday people will understand it is a cycle rather than the child’s fault, and I agree talking about the issue in the first place is an important step to this understanding.

    However, I have to disagree with one of your statements, “When a child is put into a mindset of financial instability at birth, their future is already shaped for the worse because of it.”

    Of course poverty itself never results in a net gain of advantages, but it can provide a positive mindset a child would be unlikely to acquire otherwise. One of my teachers told the class he keeps clothes for several years and always keeps extra food in the house because of childhood circumstances. He developed a mindset as a child because of poverty that helped him later in life, to never waste and be prepared.

    I would argue the attitude of the parents toward poverty matters much more than poverty itself. If parents are always distant, bitter, and/or don’t have a healthy control of their emotions, the child is more likely end up suffering. But in poverty, a child can also learn to develop a positive mindset and have an advanced self-control when it comes to spending and saving money, especially if parents regard poverty as a temporary stage in life, or are willing to ask for help–I have personally seen this happen.

    Good job on this nuanced and insightful worldview. People who are willing to talk about issues are most likely to change the world.

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