There are many social and economic issues that the community has continued to experience from as early as the history of civilization. These problems are increasing with time and getting more known around the world today. The human race has struggled to minimize or even avoid these problems altogether. One of these problems is poverty. Majority of people on earth have been ignorant of this problem and do not consider it a social calamity. Poverty is the inability of an individual to take care of his/her daily necessities such as food, shelter, clothing and proper medical care. It has been one of the main causes of social instability. This is due to the wealth disparity between the rich and the poor which turns the poor into beggars. They end up begging to sustain their daily lives with the impossibilities of securing good jobs. In the United States for example, there is a big wealth disparity between rich and poor. This disparity occurs for reasons such as dealing with usury, economic recession and government policies.
Causes and Effects of Poverty
Dealing with usury is one of the main causes of poverty in the United States and the world in general. Usury is simply the practice of making immoral or unethical monetary loans. A loan is usurious if it charges excessive or abusive interest rates according to the social mores or local laws. Most people in the current community depend on loans to achieve their life’s goals and objectives such as good houses, cars, education and investment. The banks and other forma and informal financial institutions take advantage of this to charge excessive interest rates on individuals. This is a common phenomenon that is happening till this moment, which leads poverty. Why is there still an interest rate and usury when taking loans? People who try to secure loans already suffer from a financial deficit that they would wish to fill. They have to pay the loans with huge interests depending on the time the lender gives (Espejo 15). Failure to pay the full amounts leads to confiscation of collateral which leads to a lower financial level than the initial one.
People in need of loans are aware of the problem of usury. However, they do not have any other alternatives since they are always in desperate need of the money. Other financial obligations make the problems of usury worse. The individual has to deal with tax payments among other necessities such as housing, utility bills and food. Usury also plays a key role in widening the gap between the rich and the poor. This is because the rich are already the stakeholders in the lending financial institutions. They charge high interest rates which further increases their wealth and leads to the deterioration of the financial positions of the poor.
The second main cause of poverty is economic recession. The financial crisis of 2008 led to a global economic recession which led to a collapse of businesses. Initially, the financial crisis affected only the huge firms which were in global markets. It later came down to affect businesses and individuals in the local level. This is because every business however local depends on the international markets either directly or indirectly. The great financial crisis led to negative consequences both in the economic and social perspectives. For example, a lot of people lost their jobs leading to a high unemployment rate. The loss of jobs and collapse of businesses led to shift of classes (Landes 34). Majority of people who were in the middle class suffered great financial losses which made them shift to the lower class. The upper class also suffered these losses leading to a tremendous shift to the lower class. This causes poverty level increase especially in the lower class since the competition for jobs increases. The higher unemployment level, the lower the per capita income. This means that most people lose the financial ability to sustain themselves and their families. This is not only a local phenomenon but also a global one. The affected population still search for jobs with the hope of liberating themselves from poverty in future.
The third main cause of poverty is improper policy formulation by the government. The government is responsible in controlling the country’s budget to reduce poverty levels and reduce the cost of living. In past decades, the government has exhibited a significant level of inability to manage the national cake in favor of the population living below the poverty line. Increased cost of housing and food has forced made many homeless and beggars in the streets. This has turned citizens to slaves in their own country. The high levels of unemployment has also made it impossible for a large population to sustain themselves fully. The government has shifted the taxpayers’ money to other projects such as war and space explorations leaving the common citizen suffering.
Government has the capability and the authority to control the country’s resources. It is the law-enforcement and implementation authority in the country. Therefore, they should take care of the poverty issues before it spreads to a national calamity. This is because poor people belong to the country as well as the rich. They have the right to life and live happily as well as the rich. Government should avail afford houses and education to the public. With proper education, people will utilize available opportunities both locally and abroad. Proper housing also gives a sense of belonging to the people leading to peaceful coexistence (Wagner 54).
Poverty is a serious crisis that every society on the earth suffers from including the United States. The society suffers from hunger, homelessness, and wealth disparity between the rich and the poor. Dealing with usury between people creates a huge disparity between the rich and the poor. In fact, usury makes rich people become richer, and poor people become poorer. The mismanagement of the government finds leads to an increase in homelessness, unemployment and poverty in general. The government should consult with economic experts to set policies in favor of the general population. The society in general should also work hard to eradicate poverty and promote social well-being.