Thirty years ago, 52% of the world’s population lived in extreme poverty. Now only 21% do. There is lots of other good news about economic progress in the developing world, including declines in child deaths. But 84% of Americans are unaware of this progress, and 67% think that world-wide poverty has increased.
So says a Barna study, which expresses a concern that Western attitudes are becoming fatalistic–“nothing can be done about it”–which can stymie efforts to address the very real problems of the 21%, even though they may be quite solvable. Or is the lesson that global economic progress is happening of itself by market forces apart from outside help, especially governmental help?