Baltimore

Taking the easy way out, I will quote two pundits on the subject of poverty and its relationship to the recent riot in Baltimore. The headlines say that this riot protested the treatment of black men at the hands of police, a topic that has made the news often, with cause, lately. The following thoughts try to look into deeper, more systemic causes.

N.D.B. Connolly says:

By avoiding the language of individual failings and degenerate culture, political leaders, black and white … can help us all see the daily violence of poverty. …better use the power they have to do something about it. By calling a nationwide “state of emergency” on the problem of residential segregation, by devising a fairer tax structure, by investing in public space, community policing, tenants’ rights and a government jobs program, our leaders can find a way forward.

David brooks says;

Yes, jobs are necessary, but if you live in a neighborhood … where half the high school students don’t bother to show up for school on a given day, then the problems go deeper.

The world is waiting for a thinker who can derive poverty through the lens of social psychology. Until the invisible bonds of relationships are repaired,life for too man will be nasty, brutish, solitary and short.

Having lived through The War on Poverty and the Great Society and having seen the positive changes that those movements created, I am saddened by some of the residuals. A poor, black man once said, “Can’t we just all get along?” A Man from the Middle East once said, “Love one and another …” It is not just the poor who no longer attend to those words. Such a pity.

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