Theories Of Poverty Essay, Research Paper
Does the government have an obligation to help the poor? What are the causes for poverty? These are questions that have been asked repeatedly over time. Some people believe that the government has no obligation to help the poor, and that the poor are in that situation because of their own choices. Numerous theories have arisen of what causes poverty. These theories include the biological theory, character flaws theory or the cultural poverty theory. Some thought is also raised that the poor should be put on birth control, in order to control the number of children that rely on welfare checks to survive day to day. This issue is one of sensitivity for some. Does anyone have the authority to tell a woman she cannot bear children? Isn t this her god given right as a woman?
I believe that in some instances, the government does have an obligation to help the poor. Actually, the group I am referring to cannot always be classified as poor. I think that if the government lays off workers for reasons beyond control, yes they need to help out the people that were put out of a job. For an example, let s say that one company merges with another and positions of employment are lost in the hubbub. This is not the fault of the worker that their position was eliminated. For example, John Smith was a worker on an assembly line, making $10.50/hr. With the coming of the computer age and era, his and three other positions were replaced by a computer that can run at the cost of less then + of what the four workers were making. John Smith has three kids and a wife that were living off of this paycheck. The wife was staying home to care for the children. In a case such as this, I believe that the government needs to help support John Smith and his family until they can get back on their feet.
One theory believed to be the backbone of poverty is the biological theory. This theory states that the poor are biologically inferior and in a sense, breed within their own class. I don t think this is true at all. I think that people have the choice to do what they want with their lives. The next two theories, I believe, are connected in a way. The character flaws theory says that the poor just have lack of motivation and that genetics are not an influence. This basically says that the poor just don t care about their status in society. The other theory that I believe goes hand in hand with this one, is the cultural poverty theory. This theory says that the poor have learned and accepted these lowers class norms, and know no better then the life and social status/class that they were born into. They were born into this class and adopted to the only way that they know. In a sense I do believe this. A child that is raised on the poverty-stricken streets of Brooklyn by a drug addict mother will not have same opportunity to advance in life as a child that is raised in the wealthy suburbs of Beverly Hills. I believe that a person must have two things in order to become what they want in life, such as an educated person. First, a person must be given the opportunity to be successful in life and move beyond the poor stereotype. Secondly, the person must have the want and desire to move ahead. They need the inspiration. This inspiration may be watching a public figure and having the desire to do what they do, or maybe watching a mother struggle to barely survive on welfare.