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Define Poverty

Have you ever gave some tips to someone poor, maybe you felt sorry for him, maybe you had a clear conscience after did it... Did you watch movies in several situations of poverty, documentaries about kings and queens who lived in luxury, and the people who were hungry and in total misery?

So, I ask you?

And the situation of poverty in the world nowadays ?

How is it going?

Did you know that the eradication of poverty by 2030 is the first of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations (ONU).

Half of the world's population lives on less than $1.90 a day.


I was curious,about the poverty situation in the world, that is going really bad? Yes, the UN in its latest report points out that the global population is still living in poverty. The UN website has the indexes and graphs for each country involved.

I decided to focus less on the statistics and try to discover more concrete aspects that might attract your attention, ahhh, yes ... because we need to mobilize for action.

All together. And it is not a matter of giving tips, nor is it a matter of everyone doing his own part. We need to mobilize to eradicate poverty. Needed to be all together.

Poverty is a consequence, so we first need to know the causes so that we can act to eradicate this social injustice, this misery... I am talking about development programs, political and social changes, and those capitalist society, which has been the combination of systemic and profound social inequalities.

Eradicate poverty, what do you mean? Is it possible?

I am the Tome that I am...I became suspicious, so I did a quick research on Google.

Starting with the meaning of poverty:

From Latin pauper means "poor, one who has no wealth,"

and from pre-Latin *pau-paros "who produces little; or receives little," from a composition of the root word Pauper.

From a composition of the root word Paupere

paucus "little" ( *pau- "little") and parare "produce" ( *pere- "produce").

The worker who must produce, and the one who does not have a return even for his basic needs, would be such a poor extreme poverty. In societies within a capitalist system, there is a dominant class and a dominated class, which would then be the working class. The history of humanity tells us that until today the contradictions and inequalities have been there for centuries, and even today we have not managed to eradicate hunger in the world.

And in the Bible (Mark 14:7) it is written:

"For the poor, you will always have with you, and you will be able to help them whenever you wish. But you will not always have me."

Always? It is scary.

But let's think on the positive side. If Christ had a lot to teach us, and because of the simple life he led, perhaps the fact that we can help the poor, there is also something for us to learn.

But that is another discussion.

if poverty existed even before Christ, is it possible to end it?

The ONU has a record of several countries that are working well towards this, and Malaysia is a good example, and several others advances.

The good news is that in some countries poverty has decreased since 2015 with the beginning of the creation of the SDGs. Last year (2020), the Covid-19 crisis affected many Europeans who had never lived in poverty before. And this is very bad news, because with the pandemic, instead of prioritizing investments in health, education and social protection, the World has seen budget cuts.

If you go back in time, 200 years ago, think about the rich countries of today, they were as poor as Africa is today. And then with economic growth and other measures, that's how they got out of poverty and then changed the situation of the poorest ones more slowly but efficiently. This is not the case in the developing world today. Let's say, now the problem is further down, the problem has grown, and inequality has increased.

Martin Ravallion, the economist who created the scale of US$ 1.90 (7.5 reais) a day as the global poverty line, explains that not all inequality is bad and that there are positive levels of inequality in terms of incentives for growth and poverty reduction itself, but out of 700 million people, 10% of the world population lives in extreme poverty, struggling for the most basic needs of health, education, water and sewage.

A Brazilian Band, called Titãs did a song "Comida" (Food) from 1987:

"We don't want only food

We want food, fun and art

We don't want only food

We want a way out everywhere".

This lyric expresses well what is necessary for the human being to survive, or rather to live. So we still have to move beyond that everyone has access to those basic needs.

So Tell me,

What and who defines that poverty line?


BBC Documentary:

History of Poverty and Why Poverty


Martin Ravallion - Aug.2019


Capital in the 21st Century, by Thomas Piketty.

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