Benny's World

Monday, September 19, 2005

Edwards calls for national discussion on the poor

By CHARLOTTE EBY, Globe Des Moines Bureau

INDIANOLA -- The country should open up a national discussion on helping the poor after Hurricane Katrina brought the “face of poverty” onto America’s television screens, former Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards told an Iowa crowd Sunday.

Edwards criticized President Bush’s plans to rebuild New Orleans, saying he has “a complete lack of understanding” of how the poorest victims of the hurricane lived their lives.

Edwards proposed recreating a program like the Works Progress Administration, or WPA, that put unemployed Americans back to work during the Great Depression.

“We ought to bring these folks that have been displaced back into New Orleans to rebuild their own city – give them a decent wage, decent benefits,” Edwards said. “I think that’s the way to help rebuild New Orleans the way it should be rebuilt. Not just rebuild the city, but rebuild people’s lives.”

Edwards criticized Bush for suspending a federal law that would require government contractors to pay workers the local prevailing wage for rebuilding the Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.


Harkin said it best:

"“That hurricane didn’t just rip the roofs off of houses, it ripped the mask off of George Bush’s America,” Harkin said.

I started another discussion last night with my siblings on the subject of poverty, as I tried to explain that poverty is in our backyard. We have a mother who lives in poverty as she only gets $9050 in SS from the government, and my father left her nothing many years ago when he died.

Because the topic involves money, I feel as though I fight with my siblings all of the time to contribute more to help my mom. They are well to do in many instances, but when it comes to my mom, they have difficulty understanding her financial problems and with parting with their money. They keep thinking I should bear most of the burden since I don't have children, but I don't think that's right.

Shameful. My sister and her husband don't want to help my mother willingly. They obviously live in the other America and don't see the pragmatism in giving back to someone who gave them a life and helped nurture their kids for 20 years.


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