A friend of mine shared something Desire Street Ministries had posted to Facebook:
We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.
Mother Teresa said that. It’s not something you’re likely to hear from the “Occupy Wall Street” protestors. From what I’ve heard, they tend to say that people are in poverty because of big, greedy corporations . . . or government not taking care of them. Mother Teresa was closer to a better explanation. After all, those of us eating and sleeping well weren’t handed bread and a front door key by the government or a corporation.
A deeper poverty lurks behind persistent financial poverty. Sometimes the problem is neglect or abuse, drug addiction or alcoholism. Love can conquer all, but the Department of Social Services and the DEA don’t dispense love very effectively.
My Facebook friend commented, “Non-profits do so much better of a job of helping the poor than big government can/will do.”
Why is that? It isn’t because social workers don’t care. It’s that government bureaucracies are ill-equipped to address individual needs, which go far beyond a bowl of soup and a bed or even a monthly check.
More training, regulations and new laws are hardly the solution.
We are the solution. But we won’t be if we hand the task to government and declare “I gave at the IRS.”
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.