The United States, the wealthiest nation on Earth, also abides the deepest poverty of any developed nation, but you would not know it by listening . . . to the major parties' presidential nominees [as] 47 million Americans yearn to reach the middle class. —“The Millions of Americans Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton Barely Mention: The Poor," The New York Times, August 11, 2016
Don't be so naive and pity the poor.
The poor, sages tell us, will always be with us.
Today there are just too many people, and
There just isn't enough to go around
For everybody to become Ozzie and Harriet.
But you must be so naive and
Believe establishment voices
That the market under god dictates
The income of capitalism's leaders to
Exceed the average worker's hundreds of times.
So you must accept, as you nod and sigh, that
The opportunity to share our nation's goods and wealth
Must remain elusive to millions
And poverty must remain
A never-ending curse.
George Salamon professed German language and literature at Harvard, Haverford, Dartmouth and Smith colleges, served as staff reporter for the St. Louis Business Journal and as Sr. Editor on Defense Systems Review. For the past five years he has contributed regularly to Jewish Currents and TheNewVerse.News from St. Louis, MO.