Hopelessness and Poverty in America

Opportunities in America, especially for those who have minimum wages and big families to support, are very limited. Jonathan Kozol presented a speech about poverty in America. In this, he talked about his experiences staying in a homeless center in New York, one of the wealthiest places in the nation, and how he “never found his way back home. ” The people are easily unseen and greatly forgotten. Because of this, families in poverty do not get the same possibilities as wealthier people do.

Opportunities in America should be equal for all people and to do this, actions need to be taken. The kinds of measures that need to be taken have to do with shelters, nourishment, and impartiality. Kozol was inspired to visit the homeless because of an article written the night before Christmas 1985, which told about a boy who died because he was premature. This resulted because the mother did not have the proper nourishment and care. The baby was already living on the streets before he was even a year old.

This is a revolting fact to realize that baby’s are being born on the filthy city streets and are not being provided with the proper care. Kozol decided to visit the mother of the baby in a homeless shelter. He celebrated the holidays with families in the shelter where the food was cooked off of hotplates, because there were no ovens. He also said that the average child was only six years old. The living conditions in a homeless shelter are very unsanitary and when you are a child your immune system is not that strong and it is very unhealthy.

Kozol explained how one day he was in Las Angeles when he spotted a family living on the streets. The mother came to Las Angeles to look for good rent but couldn’t find anything suitable enough. The husband was working in a sweatshop making only five hundred dollars a month, which is minimum wage. This was certainly not enough to pay for rent and support a family at the same time. Because of this, they were forced to live on the streets.

Kozol was right, compassion is un-weighted and if you are born poor in a rich nation it is a major disadvantage. To make the opportunities in America more equal, there are many things that the government and more fortunate people could do. Since there were almost two thousand people in the shelter, I think that the cities should make more places for the homeless to come, have decent living conditions, and a source of food. There should be certain doctors for patients in need who do not have the money to pay for appointments.

So that people who make minimum wage and are suffering get a fair chance, there should be people who can help find jobs for them, and help them get a chance with going to college. Everyone should have fair opportunities and have equality. People should start bending low and start helping those who are too frail to stand up. Everyone should have a shelter, nourishment, and equality. To do this people need to take a stand and start doing something about it. All people have the same rights; why not give all people the same likelihood of having the same experience of those who are more fortunate than others.