Often times in this field, we hear ignorant comments about poor people. I stopped counting how many times someone has told me that the poor or homeless should just get jobs.
It comes from the myth of meritocracy–the false belief that rich people have earned their wealth via work and production and that poor people have caused their own poverty through laziness or stupidity.
In reality, the few rich and powerful people use their wealth and power to manipulate the government and social structure to leach off the labor of the working class. As a result, working class people struggle to pay the cost of living despite their long and hard hours of labor. Bluntly, simply getting a job won’t keep a person out of poverty. Statistics demonstrate this:
Depending on who counts, the number of working poor in the United States is between 7.8 million and 28 million.
The low number comes from a report by the U.S. Department of Labor and the higher number comes from a report by Business Week. Either way, we can all agree that millions of working people live in poverty in the United States.