Unfortunately, self preservation is not valued in River East. The "gim'me gim'me" mentality is glorified. And the democratic party - no matter how well intentioned- is partly responsible for the mess we're in! This is not breaking news. We all know institutionized handouts don't work. According to a study conducted by the Heritage Foundation:
Each of the above points snowballs into other social ills plaguing River East i.e. crime, sexual promiscuity, high school drop outs, etc. Policymakers need to look at the statistics and stop throwing money at these problems. The solution to our problem is tough love. In the short term, it will be painfull. Residents will be forced to change their lifestyle. But in the long term, it will be glorious. The same way we came up from slavery and segregation, we can come up from poverty, idleness, and dependency. To acommplish this, we need to incrementally dissolve the handouts and invest in 4 things:
1. Teen pregnancy prevention
2. Child and Adult Education
3. Job Training
4. Job Creation
Can we take River East residents off public assistance and pair each one with high-paying jobs that will sustain a middle class lifestyle? Nope - not in the beginning. It will take at least one full generation to get there. Why do to you think Africans and Asians do so well when they immigrate to the U.S.? They scrimp, save, and support each other. It's not rocket science. This means if Keisha only makes $30,000 per year working as an office clerk, she will have to forgo satellite cable, trips to the nail salon, rims, Nike boots for her toddler, and brand name foods from the grocery store. Her child may only get one gift for Christmas. She will share an apartment with a relative -like the immigrants do- to save money on rent. But the dignity of being self-supporting will pass on to her child. Don't you think it's worth it?Below is a quote from George Bernard Shaw written in 1893:
People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them.