Joe of Incongruous Circumspection is starting a series called Struggling in America:
“I want your story. I want it raw. I want to hear from real Americans.
I grew up Republican. My family believed that everyone had a fair and equal chance of being successful. If you were poor, it was simply because you didn’t work hard enough. If you lived paycheck to paycheck, it was because you were bad at handling money. Even though my mother used the welfare system, we did so in secret and looked down on others, politically, for doing the same thing, viewing them as lazy.
Then I grew up and began to live real life.”
“Private charity couldn’t have done this. No private group can take care of a family, raising children from nine and two, providing shelter, medical needs, and care for two frail adults until they die. The burden is too great, the need lasts too long. Also, the dignity I spoke of is a factor. People seem to want to see those who are suffering beg, and to be able to sit in judgment of them. Frankly, that’s creepy. You can never know the pain of another person, and we often judge others by standards we ourselves couldn’t meet. Saying, “Those other slobs are lazy, and shouldn’t get help, but I’m truly deserving,” is all too common.”
Go read the whole thing!