The escalation of America's suffering poor The escalation of America's suffering poor



As Christians who fight for social justice our efforts need to be taken to a higher level. Year after year, as we drop off canned goods to food closets and soup kitchens, legislation is being passed that increases the poor amongst us to record numbers. Income disparity is at the highest level since the gilded age of last century.

One percent of Americans controls 40 percent of all the wealth and the top 20 percent possess 93 percent of all the wealth of this country. In 2011 the chief executives of the 500 biggest U.S. corporations got a 16 percent pay raise ($10.5 million a piece). All the while the bottom 80 percent of wage earners controls just 7 percent of our nation’s wealth. Eighty four percent of U.S. cities had increased requests for emergency food assistance and there are over 67,000 homeless veterans here in America.

These numbers reflect our moral code as a nation that prides itself on being founded on Christian values. While a select few lavish themselves with luxuries beyond our imagination, an increasing number of our children and elderly citizens struggle just to survive.

Even if you have never called or wrote to your elected official in the past, now is the perfect time to start. Make them understand that as Christians we refuse to tolerate these kinds of statistics and the suffering that exists because of it. Our collective voice can make a difference.

It is my hope that every Catholic parish in this state formulates a letter letting our representatives in government know that this is unacceptable for a nation that brags about opportunities in our democratic country. It will only get worse unless we try.

Robert Midura