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Poverty and homelessness are choices. Before you close your browser window, upset that I am blaming impoverished and unhoused persons for poor choices that led to their predicament, hear me out. Poverty and homelessness are choices society makes, that you and I make, each and every day. By convincing ourselves that we, the “haves,” are […] Read More

A majority of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants are employed while receiving assistance but in positions with unstable hours resulting in income volatility, according a Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) report released on March 13. The CBPP – a nonpartisan research and policy institute focused on poverty and inequality – reviewed U.S. […] Read More

The wealthiest 1 percent of the global population secured 82 percent of the global wealth created in 2017, according to an Oxfam International report published on Jan. 21, while 3.7 billion adults saw no wealth increase. Oxfam is a nonprofit organization that works in more than 90 nations “to tackle the root causes of poverty […] Read More

Jesus tells us that in the end we will be judged on how we dealt with the poor in our lives, but there are already dangers now, in this life, in not reaching out to the poor. Here’s how Bryan Stevenson, in his book, “Just Mercy,” teases out that danger: “I’ve come to believe that […] Read More

I have heard and read many references to white privilege and male privilege over the past several years. These seem to be the only types of privilege that socially progressive people talk about and disparage. Although I sometimes think these phrases are overused, I don’t disagree that our American society still struggles to level the […] Read More

Poverty is not inevitable, we are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers, and a nation should be assessed by how it helps citizens with the greatest needs. These were focal points in a report from the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships released last week. Ending poverty requires coordinated and sustained efforts between government, […] Read More

Twenty folks possess more wealth than 50 percent of U.S. citizens, according to a December 2015 report from the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), a Washington-based progressive think tank focused on peace, justice and the environment. The IPS study cites data from the latest Forbes 400 list, which necessitates having a net worth of at […] Read More

The gap between the super rich and everyone else continues to expand. “In 2014, the richest 1 percent of people in the world owned 48 percent of global wealth,” a January 2015 Oxfam report said. The remaining 52 percent was “shared between the other 99 percent of adults on the planet.” Breaking down the 52 […] Read More

The French economist Thomas Piketty’s monumental “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” is being widely acclaimed as a classic on par with Marx’s “Capital” and Keynes’ “General Theory.” Paul Krugman summarizes Piketty’s thesis thus: “The big idea of ‘Capital in the Twenty-First Century’ is that we haven’t just gone back to nineteenth-century levels of income inequality […] Read More

“Pope attacks ‘tyranny’ of markets in manifesto” (Chicago Tribune, Nov. 26); “Pope Assails ‘New Tyranny’ of Unchecked Capitalism” (Wall Street Journal, Nov. 26); “Pope Francis the Revolutionary” (Wall Street Journal, Nov. 28) are just three of the thousands of headlines in newspapers and on blog posts recently. The focus of these headlines – Pope Francis’ […] Read More