Quotes for
the Journey:

Poverty

   
   
Poverty is the parent
of revolution and crime.

Aristotle

   

"This is the even-handed dealing of the world!" he said.  "There is nothing on which it is so hard as poverty; and there is nothing it professes to condemn with such severity as the pursuit of wealth!"     -Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

   
Some of the best people that ever lived have been as destitute as I am; and if you are a Christian, you ought not to consider poverty a crime.     -Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
   
The Gospel takes away our right forever, to discriminate between the deserving and the undeserving poor.     -Dorothy Day
    
People whose history and future were threatened each day by extinction considered that it was only by divine intervention that they were able to live at all.  I find it interesting that the meanest life, the poorest existence, is attributed to God's will, but as human beings become more affluent, as their living standard and style begin to ascend the material scale, God descends the scale of responsibility at a commensurate speed.     -Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  
Even today we don't pay serious attention to the issue of poverty, because the powerful remain relatively untouched by it.  Most people distance themselves from the issue by saying that if the poor worked harder, they wouldn't be poor.     -Muhammad Yunus, Banker to the Poor

    
Extreme poverty is not only a condition of unsatisfied material needs.  It is often accompanied by a degrading state of powerlessness.     -Peter Singer, The Life You Can Save
  
Poverty is a great enemy to human happiness; it certainly destroys liberty, and it makes some virtues impracticable, and others extremely difficult.     -Samuel Johnson
   
As usual, in every scheme that worsens the position of the poor, it is the poor who are invoked as beneficiaries.     -Vandana Shiva
  
We must powder our wigs; that is why so many poor people have no bread.     -Jean-Jacques Rousseau
  
American humorist Kin Hubbard said , "It ain't no disgrace to be poor, but it might as well be."  The meanest eating or drinking establishment, owned by a man who is himself poor, is very likely to have a sign on its wall asking this cruel question:  "If you're so smart, why ain't you rich?"
   Americans, like human beings everywhere, believe many things that are obviously untrue. . . Their most destructive untruth is that it is very easy for any American to make money.  They will not acknowledge how in fact hard money is to come by, and, therefore, those who have no money blame and blame and blame themselves.  This inward blame has been a treasure for the rich and powerful, who have had to do less for their poor, publicly and privately, than any other ruling class since, say, Napoleonic times.
   Many novelties have come from America.  The most startling of these, a thing without precedent is a mass of undignified poor.  They do not love one another because they do not love themselves.     -Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five
  
It is a common condition of being poor. . . you are always afraid that the good things in your life are temporary, that someone can take them away, because you have no power beyond your own brute strength to stop them.     -Rick Bragg
  

  
It was possible, no doubt, to imagine a society in which wealth, in the sense of personal possessions and luxuries, should be evenly distributed, while power remained in the hands of a small privileged caste.  But in practice such a society could not long remain stable.  For if leisure and security were enjoyed by all alike, the great mass of human beings who are normally stupefied by poverty would become literate and would learn to think for themselves; and when once they had done this, they would sooner or later realise that the privileged minority had no function, and they would sweep it away.  In the long run, a hierarchical society was only possible on a basis of poverty and ignorance.     -George Orwell, 1984
  
If you go out into the real world, you cannot miss seeing that the poor are poor not because they are untrained or illiterate but because they cannot retain the returns of their labor.  They have no control over capital, and it is the ability to control capital that gives people the power to rise out of poverty.     -Muhammad Yunus, Banker to the Poor
  
I am opposing a social order in which it is possible for one person who does absolutely nothing that is useful to amass a fortune of hundreds of millions of dollars, while millions of men and women who work all the days of their lives secure barely enough for a wretched existence.     -Eugene V. Debs
   
Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well- warmed, and well-fed.     -Herman Melville
  
Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.     -Mother Teresa
  
When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint.  When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist.     -Hélder Câmara, Essential Writings
  
Once poverty is gone, we'll need to build museums to display its horrors to future generations.  They'll wonder why poverty continued so long in human society--how a few people could live in luxury while billions dwelt in misery, deprivation and despair.     -Muhammad Yunus, Creating a World Without Poverty
  
There are people in the world so hungry, that God cannot appear to them except in the form of bread.     -Mohandas Gandhi
  
You might be poor, your shoes might be broken, but your mind is a palace.     -Frank McCourt, Angela's Ashes
  
If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.     -Charles Darwin, Voyage of the Beagle
  
If you are preoccupied with people who are talking about the poor, you scarcely have time to talk to the poor.  Some people talk about hunger, but they don't come and say, "Mother, here is five rupees.  Buy food for these people."  But they can give a most beautiful lecture on hunger.
   I had the most extraordinary experience once in Bombay.  There was a big conference about hunger.  I was supposed to go to that meeting and I lost the way.  Suddenly I came to that place, and right in front of the door to where hundreds of people were talking about food and hunger, I found a dying man.  I took him out and I took him home.
   He died there.
   He died of hunger.
   And the people inside were talking about how in 15 years we will have so much food, so much this, so much that, and that man died.
   See the difference?     -Mother Teresa, Words to Live By
  
I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion about the means.  I think the best way of doing good to the poor is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it.     -Benjamin Franklin
  
Poverty is not the absence of goods, but rather the overabundance of desire.     -Plato
  
The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.     -Franklin D. Roosevelt
  

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