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Friday, September 19, 2014

Poverty in the Mind

Often times the term "welfare dependency" carries derogatory connotations that the recipient is unwilling to work. As a single mother, I do understand the impact of struggling through poverty.  Struggling through poverty is the exhausting and time-consuming fight to make ends meet with no end in sight. It is the daily stress of having to choose between whether to pay the rent, pay the electric bill, or pay for food. It is the daily worry about whether the car will break down, someone will get ill, or your child will need a new pair of shoes. Then having to decide which necessity will have to be sacrificed to pay for the added expense of the unforeseen bill.  Some of us have truly fallen on hard times and are “deserving” of government assistance.  But are we all “deserving” of that support?  

 Too many single mothers, of age to work with no disability, devote their time and energy looking for loopholes within the system to stay dependent on it.  My theory as to why this seems to be, is most single mothers, thus they are moving forward with changes of time, have not completely transitioned to the new state of mind.  The new state of mind is we are living in a world of equal opportunity! There are no longer policemen, there are police officers.  There are no longer mailmen, but mail carriers.  There are no longer firemen, but firefighters.  In short it means employment is no longer limited to just men; employment is available to EVERYONE.  If you are an able body whether male or female, you have every right to gain employment and EARN an income.  Unfortunately there are more women that possess the drive to “getting a man” to provide for them in additon to the goverment support they collect, than those with the desire to become self-reliant.  As a single mother, I ask, how can we, as women, DEMAND to be treated equally to men if we still cling on to the mentality that we need to be provided for?  How can we expect men to view us in the same respect if we do not make changes to get off the “system”?  Furthermore, how can we go on celebrating the women before us that fought for our rights to equal opportunity, when we are still living in the "old state of mind"? 

I understand in most cases we are left to pick up the pieces of a broken family; or left to do the best we can for our children without a father in the picture. Government assistance is there to aid us put the pieces back together.  It is there to help us move forward towards self-reliance.  It was never meant to be a permanent source of income.  Let us focus less on who are next “perfect guy” is going to be and focus more on cultivating and refining ourselves.  These days, men would prefer a woman that is self-sufficient to a woman that believes she is entitled to a HANDOUT.  We prefer men that are resourceful, and because we wanted equal opportunity, why should they expect any less from us?  

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