Some of the liberals I know think terribly of conservatives. When the latter talk about altering welfare and insist that the “war on poverty” has been a losing battle, they former denounces them. “They’re selfish” – “they’re heartless” – etc., etc.
While not everyone has concern for the poor, however, I think that most people do wish we had fewer in poverty. So it is not that conservatives are heartless and selfish; it’s that they don’t want to continue policies that for decades have done little – if anything at all, really – to combat poverty.
Paul Ryan has a fine column today on searching for a “new way” to battle this scourge.
On this less-than-golden anniversary, we should renew the fight. The federal government needs to take a comprehensive view of the problem. It needs to dump decades-old programs and give poor families more flexibility. It needs to let communities like Pulaski High develop their own solutions. And it needs to remember that the best anti-poverty program is economic growth.
Please read the whole column. Irrespective of your political allegiances, most would agree that finding methods to improve the lot of today’s poor is a worthy goal.
I have been doing volunteer work in Minneapolis at an incredibly fine charter school. The students that it serves mostly come from poor families. Nevertheless, both the desire of the students and their parents to learn and climb out of their circumstances is strong.
When I took photos last May of graduation, I saw kids and their families celebrating. The love and the pride and the hard work they are willing to do to achieve success for the next generation moves me. All of us should want to do what we can so that at some point down the road, we can say with joy, “Finally, we are winning the war against poverty.”