To understand this series’ inception, read A Response.
Each week day, I walk into a classroom full of children from the so-called dregs of society: these are the poor, the helpless, the forgotten. As I guide them through the day, using principles of love and logic, I think about what many have been through–sexual, verbal, and physical abuse; multiple fathers, and occasionally mothers; foster care; and, the worst, being disregarded in a privileged society.
As the debates continue on Capitol Hill, I wonder how many of them have visited schools like mine, the Head Starts around the country, where the teachers, social workers, and supervisors are doing their best to freely give love to those who have been neglected and cast off from traditional society. In these centers, we, the employees, are overworked, underpaid, yet happy to help the people who really need it–the kids. Despite the choices of their parents, who are often making the same choices their parents made, these children deserve the best. But do you know what they get? The worst. Funding is cut. News analysts suggest that they aren’t “really poor,” and that they “have it better than the middle class,” and should probably be blamed for the economic crisis in our country.
With some kids in my class wearing shoes two sizes too small even though they have parents working two jobs or a single mom doing her damnedest to keep food on the table, they should be blamed for their problems. I mean, they have refrigerators! (Click on the link above to hear the reference.) With many privileged people criticizing the poor, I wonder what their definition of poor is and what they would do without, or let their children do without, before they, also, occupied Wall Street or applied for government assistance.
If you want to blame adults, go ahead. But please, please, remember the children. More than anything, they deserve what they may never have the opportunity to receive.