Is America Burning - a Forum To Discuss Issues

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Skyline - Houston, Texas

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Another country heard from

This is from a young online friend of mine in England. She's having technical problems with Blogger (don't we all sometimes) so I told her I'd put it on for her.

It's an echo of what those of us on limited to "moderate" income face in the USA.


Anyhow, I agree with you and ‘Worried’: it would give me a lot of pleasure to see the rich and *important* people within our government forced to live, just for a little while, in the circumstances that we do.

Our income is adequate for survival: hell, we can even afford to save a little here and there – but eventually it all gets used on bills. We are poor enough for money to be a constant worry, for queuing at the checkout to be a weekly test on the heart, but not poor enough to qualify for any help. We are far richer than some, far luckier than many, but finances and circumstances still hold us trapped. We cannot get ahead. The only way to improve our circumstances would mean that the debt that we are already in (thanks to my mother’s student loan which my father squandered, but that’s another story) would swallow us up completely and we would drown.

I would love to see those people having to budget the way that we do.

Having to pay for anything extra which has not been allowed for that month, such as a prescription (£6.50 per item) sends us into a panic. I want those people to experience that panic: to know how it feels, what it’s like to need rigid structure and the fear that we will “have to go overdrawn again”. I would also love them to live where we are forced to; on a council estate that is classed as a ‘troubled’ area. I’d love for them to understand what it feels like, being too terrified to set foot outside your house, to even make a five minute journey to see a friend or relative who lives just a few blocks away by yourself in case you run into any of the gangs that lurk on the streets. I would love, as well, for them to have to deal with being treated like dirt if forced to ask for financial help from the council, or having to wait endlessly for medical treatment, or for repairs that are supposed to be dealt with immediately but take months to be even looked at, let alone sorted.

Yup. I would love that

Alice January 4, 2006



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