November 08, 2013
The single-mother predicament is about as bad as poverty gets in America, but having your rent and food paid for ain’t nothing to scoff at. Drive around slums in Philly or Brooklyn or LA, and you’ll see poor single moms living in five-bedroom houses with a front and back yard. Here in New York, we are inundated with towering projects where families pay only a few hundred dollars a month depending on their income.
I recently shot a movie on one of the poorest streets in Brooklyn and the single mom’s house we shot in was gigantic. She had four kids and each had their own room. One room appeared to be some kind of shrine to the matriarch and the walls were festooned with pictures of her from throughout her life. The fridge was packed, the porch went on forever, and the TV was one of the biggest I’ve ever seen. We shot all night at that location and I was startled to see her teenage son playing Batman on his Xbox at five in the morning. I hadn’t noticed him because he didn’t get up until five PM. When I was his age I worked at a gas station and if I wanted to play a video game, I’d bring a dollar to the arcade. Only spoiled brats had an Atari at home.
Simply stating the vast numbers of people on government assistance is not proof that we have a poverty problem. Kiyras Joel is the poorest village in all of America and it’s all Hasidim taking advantage of free welfare money and food stamps. They’re already doing fine with donations from “the community,” but if God’s non-chosen people are offering free stuff, why not?
Even if we did have the kind of poverty problem we’re told we have, the government would be the last place to look for a solution. The Washington Examiner recently pointed to the knuckle-whitening incompetence that has come to light recently via Obamacare. Our government is wasting billions on scammers and appears to have no intention of fixing it. This should be the story of the century, but the media refuse to go near it because it’s not an empowering Aretha Franklin song about sisterhood.
The government spends over a trillion dollars a year on welfare, but liberals say that’s not enough. Their proof is, “Look how many people sign up for it.” Yes, well, it might be time to consider the possibility that asking for something is not the same thing as needing it.
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