America, Be Not Proud

The new homeless people of America that were made so by the hurricane will soon be placed in some sort of housing. This nation will rise to the occasion and find housing for as many of these people as possible and hopefully for all of them. We are going to do this very quickly, relative to the scale of the problem. And the city of New Orleans will be rebuilt as fast as humanly possible.

The question I have is why didn’t we do this for the homeless people who have littered the streets of this nation for decades? How many homeless war veterans are there in this nation? How many mentally ill people wander the streets of America shoeless and hungry?

We will no doubt see a lot of political congratulations, praise and tributes to the many people who will take part in the effort to normalize the lives of the people displaced by Katrina and many of us will feel a newborn pride in our nation because of this. Don’t be fooled, we have a long way to go before America should be proud. While CEOs of corporations in America earn more that 400 times the salary of their average employee, people in this nation go hungry.

Religious organizations, mostly Christian and Jewish groups, support politicians who’s policies of greed contradict the teachings of these religions. The Catholic Church alone has accumulated enough wealth to solve many of the problems of society, yet what becomes of this wealth? The Catholic Church owns more real estate globally than any other organization on the planet! Yet, there are homeless people all over the world while the Church earns tax free profits from a great deal of their real estate. The Church does not even pay taxes that may help fund public programs to help house the homeless. This is not to say that Churches do not help the homeless, but I am saying there is a lot more to the picture than what we might think.

This disaster should be a wakeup call to Americans. Tax breaks are immoral while people are in need. Earth has not advanced to the point where paying too much tax can be considered unfair. When everything is taken care of, then perhaps we can discuss greed. Till then stop fooling yourself. America is overwrought with greed & insensitivity for which selective self serving compassion can not make up for. We have a lot to be proud of, but we have a lot to be ashamed of as well. Think about it!

One Response to “America, Be Not Proud”

  1. Michael says:

    Hi Jesse,

    You’re 110% correct on this point. Sure, I am heartbroken by what has happened to all of these innocent people on the Gulf Coast, and I am delighted that tremendous efforts are finally being made to aid and assist them, but there are always huge numbers on the streets only more spread out. When a disaster hits, we become concerned with helping those who have lost their housing, money etc. What about the homeless we confront every single days of our lives all over the U.S.; where are the massive efforts to help them? Are their lives somehow less worthy than the victims of a hurricane? Or is it because we feel that the victims of a natural disaster are pure victims, while we look at the day-to-day homeless as people who just didn’t try hard enough and are somehow lazy or lacking and it therefore responsible for their own conditions.

    Whether we like to admit it or not, we are a very classist society, and we are also extremely judgmental. Even those of us who profess to be kinder and gentler, somehow in many of our hearts we believe the old adage “God helps those who helps themselves.” And we give ourselves the authority to determine who is deserving of our efforts and who should just be left to suffer and die.

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