Blog Action Day is an annual nonprofit event that aims to unite the world’s bloggers, podcasters and videocasters, to post about the same issue on the same day. Our aim is to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion.
I first learned about Blog Action Day about the same time my sister sent me this article. She had a Google Alert set up for the phrase “single parent.” Here’s the excerpt the Google Alert gave her:
DOES EVIL EXIST?
NewsWithViews.com – Merlin,OR,USA
Single parent motherhood is the leading cause of poverty. Fornication leads to single motherhood. A government check will never replace a father. …
She sent it to me livid because of the title and not realizing that the excerpt pertained to her alert, but not necessarily to the article’s message. The article itself is a pretty decent article and to most of its points, I agree. I’ll readily admit that the act of sex outside of marriage is a sin. I’m also here to tell you however that God can (and did for me) take that sin and turn it for the better. As anybody who has known me longer than 5 minutes knows, Andrew is the single most important thing in my life outside of my relationship with God.
So Blog Action Day is about poverty. This article makes a blanket statement:
Poverty is a consequence of sin, often associated with fornication. Single parent motherhood is the leading cause of poverty. Fornication leads to single motherhood. A government check will never replace a father.
I’d like to disagree. First, let’s find out what is considered poverty level? According to The 2008 United States Health & Human Services Poverty Guidelines I am not poverty level. While I agree that many single parents are often poverty level, and single parents often have to fight harder than married parents to stay out of poverty, I do not see how Mr. Daubenmire comes up with his statement. He provides no facts to back up his statement. Maybe it’s an opinion-based statement rather than fact.
Some days I feel poverty level. The days when the only reason we have food in the cupboard is because of a local church food bank. The days when I go to the store to buy butter but don’t have the $2.97. The days when I have to tell my son no once again because I don’t have enough money for the 99 cent Hot Wheel he wants. It sucks. But I have to remember there are so many worse off than me. I haven’t had enough money to buy him Christmas presents the last two years. But you know what? He had a decent Christmas. God sent angels in the form of friends who knew I was struggling and wanted to make sure Andrew didn’t notice.
According to an article that ran in the Deseret News in Salt Lake City, Utah on February 19, 2003, the single leading cause of poverty is self-destructive behavior. Of course, he also points out that a large percentage of poverty is found in female-headed households. He also states:
According to a NPR/Kaiser/Kennedy School Poll, the leading cause of poverty identified by both the poor (75 percent) and non-poor (65 percent) was drug abuse.
So one article states that the leading cause of poverty is single motherhood and another article states it is drug abuse. Who is right? I tend to think neither. I tend to agree more with this article which states:
There is no single cause of poverty. Poverty is too complex an issue to be the result of just one problem. There are, however, many interrelated factors that contribute to poverty in developing nations.
I think if you’re going to narrow down poverty to one single factor, you should be sure you can back it up with facts and not opinions. My point? Just because one is a single parent does not mean they are poverty level or living off the government. And if you see a single parent that needs a little extra help, would it hurt you to give it to them? I think the problem is many assume that we want a handout when really we’d love a hand up.
You can find more facts and statistics on poverty on the Global Issues website.