« Life and Debt | Main | Globalization & Social Change Make Life A Debt in Jamaica »

Poverty Now vs. 1950

Urban poverty has been a very, very eminent problem in the urban areas of the United States for a very long time. The poverty has not changed, it is the reason for the poverty. The reading from the Ore selection this week was very interesting. It discussed how the reason for poverty has made a shift to a far worse reason that is not so correctable. While poverty used to be caused by people not working or working for little wages, now it is caused not by invididual ‘joblessness’ but by city ‘joblessness’. In the 1950s there were many people in urban Chicago that lived in poverty, but most of them had jobs that just didn’t pay them very much. William Wilson, from the Ore collection, informs us that that has changed very much. “In 1990, for example, only one in three adults ages 16 and older held a job in the ghetto poverty areas of Chicago, representing roughly 425,000 men, women, and children.? (Ore 354)

There are many problems that come along with the fact that the city is now incapable of offering these people jobs. The major problem discussed by Wilson is crime. There is no doubt that the lack of jobs definitely has an effect on an increase in crime. Now these people, living in poverty, have no means of income, and a lot of time on their hands. The only way to stop this crime is to create jobs in the community because citywide ‘joblessness’ is a dangerous source of poverty.

“Many of today’s problems in the inner-city ghetto neighborhoods – crime, family dissolution, welfare, low levels of social organization, and so on – are fundamentally a consequence of the disappearance of work.? (Ore 355)


It just seems like an endless circle that there is no way out of.

I too read that portion of the book, and re read it because it was interesting and I had to get all the facts figured out lol. It is too bad that the inner city jobs are leaving to the suburbs or the country. People are also not getting hired because they don't have the proper english skills which many jobs require to maintain their professional status.