In the most basic measurement of the status of our kids, America ranks 38th of 40 countries when calculating childhood poverty. One would expect such socialist oriented countries like Finland, Denmark, France and Germany to do better by their offspring than Americans do, but how about Slovenia, Estonia, Russia and Mexico, as well.
Russia? Mexico? Give me a break.
This heartbreaking data comes from Sunday’s New York Times in an article written by attorney and journalist Bryce Covert who specializes in such reporting.
The gist of his opinion piece underscores the importance of such government initiatives as the child tax credit, widely recognized for its success in feeding millions of youngsters but it also is under frequent attack as too expensive, too generous, too … liberal.
So just who attacks this provably positive effort to provide regular nourishment for our pride and joy, our most valuable resource, our pool of young people who we count on to guarantee us “oldsters” a comfortable and secure future?
Naturally, or actually quite unnaturally, it is a gaggle of the same graying goofs who enjoy every senior citizen perk possible – Social Security, Medicare, free and reduced meals, life extending medicines, easy and free access to the finest doctors anywhere, generous retirement benefits – who regularly vote to repeal, limit or restrict programs designed specifically to deal with America’s childhood poverty plague.
That’s right. Conservative Republican lawmakers who, in the name of smaller, limited government, turn first to the so called “social safety net” when advocating cuts and reductions in federal spending. At the same time, these self-described fiscal hawks will buy every new weapons system offered in the name of national defense, needed or not, and damn the growing national deficit.
And before some criticize me as being anti-military, let me remind them I did have the pleasure of wearing my United States Air Force uniform for 32 years; that our defense budget is $755 billion currently while our great foe, Russia, spends only $66 billion; and indeed, waste can be found in most all federal initiatives … even in the hallowed halls of the Pentagon where I served on the Air Staff for three years.
In closing, if our nation wants to remain the most powerful country in the world, and most of us do desire that, the threat from youth poverty is a much greater cause for concern than whatever craziness Vladimir Putin may perpetrate today or tomorrow.
And you can take that to your bank, while Putin can’t even do that because most of his are closed!