Benny's World

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Poverty is a Moral Issue for Everyone

By ELIZABETH WHITE, Associated Press Writer Wed Dec 14, 4:31 PM ET

WASHINGTON - U.S. Capitol Police arrested 115 religious activists who were protesting a House Republican budget plan's cuts in social programs when they refused to clear the entrance to a congressional office building Wednesday.

"These are political choices being made that are hurting low-income people," said Jim Wallis, the event's organizer and founder of the Christian ministry group Sojourners. "Don't make them the brunt of your deficit reduction and fiscal responsibility."

This was in response to:

WASHINGTON - Congressional Republicans made progress on twin tracks Wednesday toward their end-of-year budget goals, passing a bill freezing or cutting back spending on medical research and education and nearing agreement on cuts to the Medicaid health care program for the poor.

The first measure, a $602 billion bill funding a wide variety of health, education and labor programs, passed the House on a 215-213 vote. It would cut federal aid to education for the first time in a decade, and spread about $1.4 billion in cuts across the departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education.

And will these same people donate more books, less clothes, and a little bit more money while they are drinking the finest champagne. I like fine wines, have tasted them more than once, but it was at some tasting; occasionally at a celebration or a fundraiser for PBS/local charity that was reasonable for most middle incomed folks to get a ticket into and enjoy.

In general, I think if people have numerous bundles of discretionary income, they should also think of those who have less resources than they. They do with funding private institutions and some of those students get scholarships; privileged kids who attend Ivy Leagues are Congressional interns, often for little or no pay. I suppose that's a service to us, but I would argue many of them don't worry about their energy bills or that they don't have to worry about rent.

Sadly, we have turned into a theocracy in which those who can pay tithes for sins (sorry, the Catholic rules of long ago that I studied in history come to mind) get better service or privileges (tax cuts) than most, especially in the rural or very urban areas. I suppose fiefdoms will be next, but with the hope there will be another Magna Carta that is called "the Constitution" to evolve for government policy.

I know people who have looked for jobs for 4 years. That's too long.

"I refused to consider the vigil a partisan affair, saying the religious and political spectrum was widely represented. "The media seems to think only abortion and gay marriage are religious issues," Wallis said. Poverty is a moral issue, it's a faith issue, it's a religious issue.

JRE has the same message via the "Two Americas" theme.


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