The challenges many hardworking Americans are facing is probably some of the toughest times ever. The types of days & nights leaving parents feel as though they are failures not being able to provide necessities for their children, without sinking deeper into debt, loans, borrowing or simply doing without.
What should the head of a household do when he or she is faced with the dilemma to either pay the rent/mortgage or buy groceries or purchase needed medication for a child that need it sustain quality of life, or buy new shoes because the children have outgrown their shoes?
What should you do if you can no longer rob Peter to Paul because both Peter and Paul are out of resources? What should you do if your income does not meet your living expenses but you are NOT living above your means? Is there anyone to blame? Can we make our employers pay us a higher wage if pay increases are not being afforded because…oh yeah, everyone is being hit with hardship – even the company that employs you.
Should you move to an area that’s less expensive but unfortunately, it’s not an area that is safe and the schools in the respective areas are failing schools? Should you sell your car and rely on public transportation to get you to and from your job(s)….even if you work at nights? Who even cares about these quirks that many are being faced with?
The state of the union is truly not unified on the fronts of the well-being of today’s average family. But then again, who is considered average – the rich, the struggling working class, or the households receiving government assistance (food stamps/housing/health insurance etc.). There is nothing wrong with being wealthy, I wish I was, there is nothing wrong with receiving government assistance, I wish I could but where is the rope for those in the middle – scrapping to survive literally. When you’re told you don’t qualify for food stamps because “you’re over income”, you’re told you don’t qualify for housing assistance because, “you’re over income”, you don’t qualify for assistance with utilities, summer employment for your children and things of that nature because “the programs are for the needy…and you’re over income!” I laugh, the program is for the needy, yet the very needy you speak of, are already receiving EVERY handout given. There is nothing remaining to cut from your budget because you do not shop, go to hair salon, nail shop, have a nice car, wear expensive clothes and your clothes are at least 10yrs old….where is your break, you often ask of the universe?
I don’t have a problem with the “system” existing, I have a problem with a single mother who has an illness that keeps her hospitalized 90% of the time, yet she cannot receive food stamps because her disability is too much, but after rent, she’s lucky to have $100 to which that has to be allocated between food, utilities, toiletries, transportation to and from school for both her and her child. Yes, this mother is also a college student. So, it’s not that she’s lazy, she is trying to better her situation by going to school – but due to health conditions she is restricted to work. Where is the help for her?
Or what about the disabled elderly man that too, cannot receive food assistance because his social security check and the little money he receives from his wife pension just covers rent, utilities (to which he will sulk in hot temps to avoid running the AC to keep the bill down), personal items leaving him only to live off cold sandwiches and once a week hot meal.
Where is the light at the end of the tunnel? Those on the outside looking in – usually only see what they may have trained themselves to see, or led to believe, that the “needy” and by needy, I am referring to the “working class” are needy because they are lazy, uneducated, stemming from a generational curse of turning the system into a career opportunity, or feel as though they are owed something. No, the working class are not lazy, are not uneducated (many with degrees), are not co-dependent and not freeloading citizens. They are mothers, fathers, caregivers who more often than you may care to realize or accept are making hard decisions daily about feeding their children, finding ways to buy medication that is needed for asthma, autism, and other illnesses that affect greatly a child’s day-to-day functions. These guardians are making the conscious decision to sink into debt by missing bill payments to have money to eat, bathe, wash clothes, school activities – because it’s not the child’s fault and often, it’s not the parents fault. The fault is likely, the rates on rent is ridiculous, everyone is not receiving housing assistance yet landlords are pricing their homes to receive the most bang for their properties – I get that…they too have to eat & provide. Mortgage rates and interest – the same. The price of food, especially healthy food is almost robbery. I can remember when $20 could buy milk, bread, cereal, sandwich meat and snack, now you’re only getting milk, bread and snack with that $20.
The morale of the working class today is probably really low, it’s like the “lost class” of civilization – left to fend for themselves in the good ol’ USA – the hardworking, educated, trying and yet still come up short with the demands of living in today’s economically off-balanced society.