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Laura Holton
Kim 6
English AP
6 March 2014

In the past ve years, the United States government has spent 3.7 trillion dollars
on welfare, but statistics prove that 50 million Americans are still living in poverty. The
amount of money that denes poverty in our country is high compared to other
countries, but still matters for the people of our nation. "The poor in the United States
are richer than around 70% of all the people in the world (Worstall)." Some people make
more money with welfare than they would working a job. The United States rst created
welfare in hope that involved recipients would be encouraged to help the nation's
poverty crisis, and to support the poor. In the past twenty years, welfare has produced
the opposite results, with more people than ever in poverty. In fact, the poverty rate now
is close to where it was in 1965 when president Johnson declared a federal War on
Poverty. "The vast majority of current programs are focused on making poverty more
comfortable - giving poor people food, better shelter, health care, and so forth - rather
than giving peope the tools that will help them escape poverty." (Cover) More people
are receiving welfare benets than working full time in our nation (Sykes). Many people
see welfare as the role of a just soceity, to provide its members with their basic needs.
Yet many others nd taxing productive workers to subsidize the less productive, is
comparable to theft. People are free to provide for themselves and should be held
responsible for their actions if they do not. More people are considered to be in poverty,
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and having government assistance has become a way of life for them, proving that
welfare is a broken system.
How to qualify, drug testing. In 1995, the main welfare program, AFDC cost the
governement more than 17 billlion dollars. Welfare is an investment by society in human
beings. Welfare is dened as nancial or other assistance to an individual or family
providing funds and aid to people, including those unable to work. During the Roman
Empire, those unable to afford meals were given corn dole. This began welfare
programs which has led to less individual innitiative. Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the
rst welfare law in 1935 known as the social security act. Considering the great
depression and loss of jobs, Roosevelt's goal was to help people in economic despair
have a chance to get back on their feet. With this act, the government intended to
provide people with opportunites for jobs. Only 18.3% of poor people on welfare in 1987
have moved out of poverty, and 45% of poor peole receiving benets escaped
poverty(Cozic, 37). When the Great Depression hit, many people became unemployed.
The government felt they needed to step up and help solve this problem. By the 1960's,
many people started to believe that welfare programs had created a culture of
dependency, discouraging people of leaving welfare and nding employment. When
started, who started. A bill passed that changed welfare from an entitlement to a block-
grant for states. states are now free to set their own eligibility criteria and may limit
access to welfare in various ways, including limits on the length of time a family may
receive assistance. In order to apply for welfare programs,
Social welfare was only meant to give assistance for a short period of time to
those in desperate need. Welfare programs for immigrants allowed for assimilation to
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the American Culture, but even illegal immigrants are receiving benefts. Ronald Reagan
stated, "We should measure welfare's success by how many people leave welfare, not
by how may are added. "Many people think that immigrants should be allowed benets
until they assimilate to the American Culture. It is intended to help individuals who are
unemployed, ill or disabled, elderly, those with dependent children, or veterans.
President Clinton wanted to end welfare as we know it. Why it was started, give
assistance for a short time. Surveys show that Americans support helping the poor, but
do not support welfare, the primary program designed to help the poor.(Bartels)
In America we now think everything is acceptable. We support divorce, out-of-
wedlock birth, and the disintegration of family. All of these things have caused the
poverty level to increase. There's many ways and reasons why welfare was brought
about, but a lack of jobs is one of the biggest problems. After the Great Depression
many people lost their jobs, losing the income to suppor their families. The government
believed welfare would just help them get back on their feet.Lack of jobs, immigrants,
Roosevelt spent on recovery, great depression, industrialization.out of wed lock birth.
The U.S welfare system actually makes poverty more attractive, even to those who
would otherwise have been motivated to work and support themselves. (Westfall) Newt
Gingrcih writes in his essay, "The welfare system has sapped the spirit of the poor and
made it harder to climb the rst rungs of the econmic ladder."
Younger children show small improvements in their school achievement when
their parents participate in a program that includes earning supplements. The longer a
child remains on AFDC in childhood the lower their earnings as an adult. Since welfare
systems were rst created, the rate of unemployed people has increased immensely.
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"Our check's gonna come in the mail every month, and it's gonna be on time. We get
subsidized housing, we even get presents delievered to our kids on Christmas. Why
should I work?" () Many people have started to believe this because of how low the lack
of shame is. During the 1900's, most people were embarrassed to be seen eating food
given by the government. If people were getting food assitance, it meant they were out
of a job and therefore weren't respected, so they would hide their faces and move as
quickly as possible. In a system without cross checks and billions being dished out year
after year, many have learned they don't have to work (Slavo).

There are many ways our country could improve the issues of poverty we are dealing
with because of welfare. Who is at fault, unemployed, lack of shame
Birth control, drug testing, part time jobs, parenting classes, laws for girls who
just have babies to receive more welfare, qualication of homes for welfare kids. There
have been some gains from the 1996 welfare reform subsidies and other work-related
subsidies. The laws haven't lifted all children out of poverty, but the never married and
single mothers have improved their and their children's living standards."Our rst priority
should be guring out how to reduce poverty permanently by increasing work and
human capital among the poor." Citation 4 Cover states that the study recommends
refocusing anti-poverty efforts on keeping people in school, discouraging out-of-wedlock
births, and encouraging people to get a job even if that job is a low-wage one. grocery
store for only welfare people
Welfare systems in the United States are causing more poverty, not destroying it.
I can see how this program helps some people, but many are taking advantage of it. But
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freedom, argue welfare proponents, means nothing if people do not have the ability to
exercise it (Westfall). Clearly we are doing something wrong. Throwing money at the
problem has neither reduced poverty, nor made the poor self-sufcient (Tanner).