Politics Magazine

Child Poverty Is Commonplace In The U.S.

Posted on the 15 May 2013 by Jobsanger
Child Poverty Is Commonplace In The U.S. This chart from UNICEF should shame every single American. We live in the richest nation in the world, and yet have nearly the highest child poverty rate (23.1%) of any developed nation. That means nearly one out of every four children in this country is living in poverty. Only Romania has a higher child poverty rate (23.6%), and it is just barely higher. Compare that to the nations of northern Europe, all of whom have a rate under 8%.
Right-wingers like to call those northern European nations "socialist" countries -- like that is something bad. But while those nations have some socialist elements in their economy (along with some capitalist elements), what they do not have is a high rate of child poverty. That's because the income and wealth of those countries is more evenly distributed -- and they have a good social safety net to give the poor and disadvantaged a hand up.
In the United States, we have a poor social safety net. It barely provides for a subsistence level of living -- and even then, not for all who need it. And we have the biggest gap between the rich and the rest of our people of any nation in the developed world (and actually worse than some third-world countries). And many in our government (the Republicans and blue dog Democrats) want to cut the social safety net further, to pay for new and bigger tax cuts for the rich (the same people who are hoarding most of this nation's wealth).
What we need in the U.S. is to re-establish some economic justice. Since the imposition of "trickle-down" economics by Republicans in the 1980s (and enhanced by Bush after 2000), economic justice has slowly disappeared (along with a good chunk of the middle class). If we don't kick the remaining Republicans out of power and change this failed economic policy, we'll soon be left with a country composed only of the rich and poor -- and that outrageous child poverty rate of 23.1% will look like the good old days (as it climbs much higher).

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog