Poverty Essay

1142 words - 5 pages

Presented By: Corey Edwards
Presented To: Dr. Mary Kay Svedberg
Class: SOC 100
Date: March 4, 2012

In the real world, poverty has been described as where it takes place. This means the way people eat and mostly how they live. Poverty has been blamed “as the result of policy choices, of political will, and of moral conviction” (Spriggs, 2007). Most importantly, society blames the person that is living in poverty. The South and Southwest of the United States is where the majority of poverty found. Poverty can be referred to as material conditions, economic position, or the social position of that person(s). Poverty is attributed to inequalities in the structure of ...view middle of the document...

Research has shown that children who live in poor conditions most likely will have a mental illness (Department of Health, 1999b). This can also lead to deficits with children’s cognitive skills and educational achievements. Poverty and illness together make people much more vulnerable and needy at all stages of their lives, and even more so in old age.
The number of people who live in poverty has declined since the beginning of the 1900s. “The number of people who were living off $1 a day has moved up to $1.25 a day” (Shah, 2011). “In 1981, the estimated number of the poor increased 1.5 billion to 1.9 billion” (Shah, 2011). It 1988, it dropped to 1.4 billion. The persistence of poverty also depends strongly on individual and family characteristics. Among those beginning a spell of poverty, about 83 percent of white children living in two-parent households headed by someone with at least a high school education will escape long-term poverty. In contrast, only 10 percent of poor black children in a household headed by a single woman without a high school diploma will avoid it. Research has shown that two-thirds of people living in poverty are white and 25 percent of the African American population lives in poverty (Macionis, 2010). Although, African Americans are more likely to be living in poverty than non-Hispanic whites.
In the year 2000, the number of poor Americans reached an 11-year low at 31.6 million, and the poverty rate stood at a 26-year low at 11.3 percent (Spriggs, 2007). The U.S. Census Bureau reported that in 2007, 37 million people (men, women, and children) were poor at 12.5 percent. “The poverty line is about three times what the government estimates people will spend for food” (Macionis, 2010). Poverty has decreased tremendously since the 1960s and is constantly staying between 10 and 15 percent. However, the poor people in the United States are way better off than the poor in other countries. Different sectors have declined at different rates, but the overall trend is clear. Now 46 million Americans live in poverty (Eisold, 2011).
The United States can extend more property rights protection to the poor. This helps them with their economic freedom by having rights to land. The increase of welfare could possibly help but only to those who need it. We could have more supporting programs to people in poverty. These programs can teach people how to come out of poverty and get back on the right track. There also needs to be a better debt relief plan. Even...

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