Aveneu Park, Starling, Australia

Poverty their social and cultural gender roles, they face

Poverty
is everywhere and affects men, women, and children. It is affecting people
differently of different ages, ethnicities, and sex. Due to women’s biology and
their social and cultural gender roles, they face disadvantageous conditions
which accumulate the effects of poverty (“Gender and poverty).
Poverty
not only harms people in poverty, it effects every person.
Many things cause poverty and some of them include
lack of education, having a culture of poverty, overpopulation, epidemic diseases such as AIDS and
malaria, and environmental problems such as lack of rainfall (“Gender and poverty). With all these problems that cause poverty there are
programs and people out there that help people in poverty and try to end it in
a whole. People get upset that people in poverty can’t provide for themselves
and think they abuse using special organizations that help them get out in
poverty, but that’s not true and people need to stop blaming the victims of poverty
for being poor.

The basic definition of poverty not earning enough money to
afford needs like food, clothing, and shelter (“When did poverty start?”). It
is said that Poverty was around in the 1770s, as stated in the book “The
Wealth of Nations,” written by Adam Smith in 1776 (“When did poverty
start?”).  Smith stated income
inequalities among citizens in the United States. It said economic prosperity
differed among nations in addition to citizens of the U.S. Some nations had
advanced technology and acquired wealth quickly, while others struggled to
provide citizens with basic needs and resources (“When did poverty start?”).
One in eight U.S. citizens are considered to be in poverty and thirty three
percent of those people are children (“Poverty Facts.”). Detroit’s poverty rate
is three times higher than the national rate and sixty percent of the people in
poverty there are children (“Poverty Facts.”). Poverty has been around for a
really long time and will likely to continue to be around for a while until we
take action and defeat it.  

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In Ideology and the Harms of Self-Deception: Why We Should
Act to End Poverty by Timothy Weidel, it talks about how poverty not only
harms people in poverty, it effects every person (Ideology and the Harms of self-Deception). Humans have a selfish
desire to avoid the harms of poverty and every problem that comes with it. We
should help people in poverty out since we will sacrifice so little and it will
provide such great help to the poor by saving their lives (Ideology and the Harms of self-Deception). We have a moral
obligation to take out our wallets and donate to a reputable agency. It is
worth noting that this is not an easy task, even those of us who recognize the
harms of ideology try to avoid self-deception sometimes feel we cannot make a difference
(Ideology and the Harms of
self-Deception). Sometimes the problem feels so big, and our contribution
so small, so we think there’s no point in helping (Ideology and the Harms of self-Deception). We say there is nothing
I can do about this problem. But this is self-deception and there is something
you can do for this person in front of you at this particular moment (Ideology and the Harms of self-Deception).
At the very least, there is real benefit to stopping and acknowledging the humanity
of the person asking you for help (Ideology
and the Harms of self-Deception). If we all help out a little, it will
combine to something big. So if someone asks for some change on the street,
give them what you can and also stop and talk to them to make them feel part of
humanity.

 

It is said that women have a higher poverty rate than men. One
of the main reasons for this is because women earn less than men when they have
all the same qualities and standards as men. They have no choice but to make
less and this doesn’t help them one bit if they are in poverty. Women who work
the same amount of hours as men make only seventy seven percent of what men do (“FEMINIZATION
OF POVERTY.”). Another reason is they are segregated into
low paying occupations. They are put into jobs like nursing, waitressing, and
cleaning that pay much less than jobs men usually get. Another big reason I
would say is women are more likely to take the costs of raising children. The
employers might not want to hire women just because they don’t want her to miss
time for work (Cawthorne, Alexandra). This isn’t right, but women are
definitely at a disadvantage when trying to find a well-paying job. Women also
experience feminization of
poverty, which is a change in the levels of poverty biased against women or
female headed households. More specifically, it is an increase in the
difference in the levels of poverty among
women and men or among female versus male and couple headed households (“FEMINIZATION OF
POVERTY.”).

 

            Lack of education also has an impact
on poverty. It is said that the root to poverty is a lack of education and it
has been an ongoing problem for many years (“Inditex beta.”). If someone can’t
read or do basic math problems, they won’t be able to apply themselves at work
and in that case won’t have a job. If they do get a job it will most likely be
one that doesn’t pay well and keeps them in poverty. There are almost 80
million children today who don’t go to school and fifty five percent of them
are girls. A lot of countries charge an enrolment fare so poor families can’t
afford their children an education. They don’t have a choice because they were
born into families that don’t have enough money to give them an education. “Education
is not a way to escape poverty, it is a way to fight it”-Jullius Nyerere
(“Inditex beta.”). Education is also key
into breaking poverty. If we don’t have an education about poverty then we
can’t teach our children about it and how to fight it. We need to know the
basics of the problem in order to solve it.

Poverty can lead to
overpopulation. There is an estimated 7 billion people in the world and 680
million of them are starving (“How Poverty Impacts Overpopuation). As population and hunger increase in the
developing world, water availability for irrigation is declining. The USAID
stated that overpopulation results from the issue of a lack of education in
poverty stricken areas. The Population Institute also documents that “The U.N.
projects the population of the 48 poorest countries in the world will double
from 850 million in 2010 to 1.7 billion in 2050.”The bottom line is, the less
poverty there is in an area, the less overpopulation will occur. People have
more babies if they don’t know they will survive or not (“How Poverty Impacts Overpopulation). It is almost destined for
these babies born in poverty stricken areas to stay in poverty for the rest of
their lives.

Environmental
problems can cause poverty. Environmental
problems add more to the miseries of people in poverty (Youth, Voices of). These environmental problems make life real hard on people
as these catastrophes lead to other problems. Some of these problems are soil
erosion, land degradation and deforestation (Youth, Voices of).  This leads to
decline in food production along with shortage of wood for fire (Youth, Voices of). The worst consequences of environmental deterioration are
usually experienced by the people in poverty (Youth, Voices of). Natural disasters cause major problems money wise and this
causes people to become in poverty (Youth, Voices of). Not only the catastrophes that happen to the land, but just
the environment people are born into leads people to grow up into poverty.

The two diseases mostly associated with
poverty are AIDS and Malaria (“Diseases and the
Links to Poverty). More than forty million people across the globe are
infected with AIDS and over ninety percent of the people infected are from
developing countries in poverty (“Diseases and
the Links to Poverty). Malaria is attributable to one million deaths
globally per year and predominantly affects people in the world’s poorer
regions (“Diseases and the Links to Poverty).
Poverty causes set backs on developing cures for these diseases. Many people
who have these diseases need the money they make to pay for the medications to
survive (“Diseases and the Links to Poverty).
They have to buy the most basic items just to survive or try and live without
necessities (“Diseases and the Links to Poverty).
These places in poverty are more prone to these diseases because they can’t
afford the health care needed to prevent them (“Diseases
and the Links to Poverty). The people in poverty are trapped in poverty
stricken areas and they can’t maintain a clean environment (“Diseases and the Links to Poverty). This is
linked to the environment people are born into and possibly the education level
of these places.

Having a culture of poverty is almost destined to leave you
in poverty. This culture is characterized as felling helpless, dependent, and
powerless (“Culture of Poverty.”). The division of poverty
has had a major impact on U.S. public policy (“Culture of Poverty.”). It has formed the basis for public policy toward the
poor since the early to mid-1960s (“Culture of Poverty.”). It strongly influenced President Lyndon Johnson’s
War on Poverty (“Culture of Poverty.”). The culture of poverty theory indicates the
development of a set of departing norms. Where behaviors like drug use and gang
participation are viewed as the norm behaviors of those living in the ghetto Culture of Poverty.”). The culture of poverty theory indicates the
development of a set of departing norms. Where behaviors like drug use and gang
participation are viewed as the norm behaviors of those living in the ghetto.
Another explanation is that individuals behave in ways that are illegal, like
participation in gangs, not because they wish to do so or are following
cultural norms, but because they have no choice. Seeing as how the lack of
educational and job opportunities available in their neighborhoods are almost
non-existent. Growing up in poverty has a huge influence if you’re going to be
in poverty in the future (“Culture of Poverty.”).

 

There are hundreds of organizations just in your local area
that try and end poverty or anything in relation with poverty. The
organizations involved help many families and people in need with food and
shelter. These organizations also help make people aware of poverty and hunger
in their communities and try to get other people to help out in the community (“Great
Organizations Confronting Poverty & hunger”).
Some examples are food pantries, Mazon, Bread for the World, Hunger Task Force,
and Meals on Wheels and on and on (“Great Organizations Confronting Poverty
& hunger”). The U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development’s
mission is to create strong communities with quality and affordable homes (“Great
Organizations Confronting Poverty & hunger”). I
would say that CARE is probably one of the biggest organizations trying to end
poverty. CARE operates in ninety countries, reaching more than eighty million
people through nearly one thousand projects (Careadmin.). They take great pride in helping women improve their
education, increase access to quality healthcare, and expand economic
opportunity. They also help communities plan for emergencies and give people
necessities like food, water, shelter, and healthcare. CARE is a great
organization and there are many others that do the same to help fight poverty.
Without all these organizations out there, it’s sad but many people in poverty
might not make it too long without the assistance (Careadmin.).

After
researching extensively on poverty I wanted to do my own experiment and see the
different class orientations around different stores and how gendered the
stores were. I visited two clothing stores which were TJ Maxx in Oswego and The
Salvation Army in Chittenango. I believe these two stores have two different
class orientations in which TJ Maxx draws a crowd that is more middle and upper
class, while The Salvation Army draws a crowd that is more lower class and
can’t afford more expensive clothing items. I believe both these stores are
good places for people in poverty to go and buy clothes. While I visited both
places I wanted to see what the workers were like, how clean the two stores
were, what type and how much their merchandise was, and if they gendered  their products. I also wanted to see what kind
of customers they drew and if there workers blended in or if they wore uniforms
to stand out. Through all this I will let you know how I felt while visiting
these stores and all the different things I observed while there.

To
determine the class in both TJ Maxx and The Salvation Army I took into the
consideration how the store presented itself, how clean it is, and what the
store looks like on the inside. I also took into consideration the cost of most
of the items. When I visited TJ Maxx I noticed right away how colorful it was
inside. Not so much with the walls and flooring because that was mainly white
and red, but with the clothes everything was colorful and popped out. The
inside of TJ Maxx was also very clean and had a pleasant smell. They make it
very pleasant for any customer to come in and shop. It made it feel very homey
and comfortable. The cost of things weren’t that bad either. They are a store
that receives merchandise from other companies for a cheap cost so they are
able to sell it at a cheaper cost than what it would be at other stores.
Compared to other stores like this they are a little more expensive so they
draw in more of a middle class crowd but it is still very cheap considering
other stores. When I visited The Salvation Army I thought it was a little dull
and outdated. Which is expected from a store that gives out a lot of donations
and helps out the community. When I walked in I felt like they could have
modernized the store a little more with the paint on the walls, some of the
clothes they were selling, and the equipment they were using. Although, I know
this is a store that receives donations from people and sell their clothes at a
very cheap price to help people in need out so they don’t really need to have
the most appealing store to people to try and sell their product. The
cleanliness of the store wasn’t the best but I also noticed that there weren’t
that many people working at once so it would be hard to get to cleaning things.
I would consider this store to draw a lower class crowd.

When
I visited both these stores I noticed very little class or race gendered
merchandise. When I was in TJ Maxx I did notice that there was a lot more
female merchandise than Male merchandise. I would say that about 2/3 of the
store was for females and 1/3 was for males. That was the only class or
gendered merchandising I noticed and to be honest that is what most stores do
because more females like to go shopping for clothes than males. For both
stores they separated Men’s, Women’s , Boys, Girls, and Babies sections to make
it easier for you to find the things you are looking for.  They also separated the boys and girls toys
in the toy section. Again to just make it easier for people to find what they
are looking for. I feel like this is natural for any clothing store.

When
researching these stores I took notice of the race and gender of both the
customers and employees and came to the realization that most were white and
female. Not all were but I would say the majority were white and female. At TJ
Maxx the workers were of all ages and mostly female, except the manager was a
male. I thought this was very interesting because almost all the employees of
the lower ranking were female except one who was male. This got me thinking of
how females are given lower ranking positions that pay less than males. The
only other male looked like a manger of some sort. He was dressed up in a dress
shirt and pants while most of the employees wore clothes that you could
possibly buy from there. At The Salvation Army there wasn’t many people working
when I was there. All I saw was a girl cashier who was probably in her upper
20’s and a female manager of some sort who was walking around and working with
the clothing. While at both these places I noticed that both places wore name
tags and that there wasn’t people working of different races when I was there.
I’m guessing this is because both areas are high populations of white people.
Both areas have a demographic of 95%+ of white people (Chittenango, New York. (n.d.).
Like I’ve said I observed that most of the people shopping there were mainly
white and female, but I also did see some men with their spouse, kids, a couple
males alone, elderly females, African Americans, and some other races. The
difference between these two places were that TJ Maxx drew a crowd that was
more middle class and The Salvation Army drew more of a lower class crowd.

I
chose both TJ Maxx and The Salvation Army because I believe they are both
similar in the fact that they buy or receive clothes for little to no cost and
sell them at a cheap price. These two places are great places for people in
poverty who don’t have much money can go and buy clothes. I took all the
research I did into consideration and just thought about how people are lead
here because of their education, the area and families they grew up in, their
gender, and realized how we all got to where we are at from all those
situations.

In
conclusion, Poverty is everywhere and affects men, women, and children. It is
affecting people differently of different ages, ethnicities, and sex. It’s
unfair, but almost all these situations that cause or are caused by poverty all
start with the family you are born into.  We should help out anyone in need and
contribute what we can to help out. Although, there are problems we can’t control
that cause poverty like natural disasters and the areas we grow up in. Throughout
doing this research I couldn’t believe all the causes of poverty I came across
and it was making me feel helpless, but then I realized all the organizations
out there that help people in poverty and made me realize I can contribute my
time and help out. There are many causes of poverty and each cause is
individually affecting people in poverty. The main reason I believe is a lack
of education. This is the main reason people think people in poverty are
abusing the system, but in reality they are born into poverty, whether it’s the
location or family you live in or have. If everyone had the knowledge they
needed about poverty, we could help try and end it in a whole.

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