Poverty kills normal initiative

"The sting of poverty – The Boston Globe 

tags: poverty

"In the community of people dedicated to analyzing poverty, one of the sharpest debates is over why some poor people act in ways that ensure their continued indigence. Compared with the middle class or the wealthy, the poor are disproportionately likely to drop out of school, to have children while in their teens, to abuse drugs, to commit crimes, to not save when extra money comes their way, to not work
When we’re poor, Karelis argues, our economic worldview is shaped by deprivation, and we see the world around us not in terms of goods to be consumed but as problems to be alleviated. This is where the bee stings come in: A person with one bee sting is highly motivated to get it treated. But a person with multiple bee stings does not have much incentive to get one sting treated, because the others will still throb. The more of a painful or undesirable thing one has (i.e. the poorer one is) the less likely one is to do anything about any one problem. Poverty is less a matter of having few goods than having lots of problems."

This problem has been bugging me since my childhood when I was surrounded by people living in poverty and squalor. I myself lived in it as a child and it is only much later that I could rise out of the dehumanizing conditions of poverty. Drawing from the sting theory mentioned above, one could come to a conclusion that poverty is such a hopeless situation that it kills the normal human initiative expected in such a situation because the individual feels that it does not really matter if a partial or insignificant solution is reached .When I am talking about the dehumanizing  effect of poverty ,I mean the killing of the normal human initiative which alone can bring the individual out of the hopeless situation.

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