From my work in progress at Wattpad..
My next section deals with the perception and reality of poverty. Being raised a good little midwestern Republican, I was taught that you had to be cautious of giving money to the people on the street, because they were "just gonna use it for liquor" and that those that were living on goverenment assistance were just lazy. There were horror stories of pregnant moms that were having kids and sit around doing nothing.
As I grew up, I would learn just how unrealistic and untrue those perceptions would be. First of all, any woman raising kids is working harder than most men at their high paid jobs. Second, I would realize that poverty isn't something that people choose but is often chosen for them, as I would learn over the span of my own years.
Over my life, I have had to declare bankruptcy on bills a few times, and all of them were due to situations that were above my ability to prevent. I was drowning in debt, earlier in my life, when I faced bills resulting from my daughter's birth. When he was being born, we were covered by Oklahoma state medicaid health insurance. However, since we moved right after her birth, Oklahoma said that due to a clause that required us to remain in that state for 6 months after using the benefits, they refused to pay any of our medical bills.
Then, a few years ago, I moved TO A GOOD PAYING JOB in Texas, as a way to pay more money for the family. Following the state procedure, we notified my wife's ex of our plan to move. He did not object. We moved, and I began the job. He participated in the relocation a few times without objection. Then, he got a problem with the drive and sued my wife for contempt for her move with the demand she be put in jail. The state of Oklahoma pressured us to move back to Tulsa. As a result of this move FROM a higher paying job to a state WITHOUT work at the demand of the state, we ended up with a HUGE list of bills, since all of our "friends" failed to help at our request. Also due to the stress of the exhanges and the relocation (and walking miles a day without a car for work in Tulsa), I ended up with major back and health issues.
I say all of this to say this. Our financial woes had NOTHING to do with our desire to work or our efforts. In fact, that desire LED to the poverty, as well as being ignored by those that claimed to care for us. Our poverty was caused by physical limitations, institutional and state caused debts, and more. When you consider how many people have physical infirmities or legal situations or even job layoffs, you never know the story of ANYONE that is poor or their ability to work or pay. Just this last month, the job I was doing suddenly had no work for 2 weeks and announced after that there would be none for 2 more weeks.
YOU DON'T KNOW what struggles other are facing, so you do not have the right to determine if they can FEED THEIR FAMILY or pay their medical bills. It is time people stopped judging entire classes of other people by their OWN situations and started to care, again.