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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1510767-Is-Poor-a-Crime
Rated: E · Poetry · Community · #1510767
Is Poor a Crime
Is Poor a Crime?
The local newspaper in big bold letters
proclaimed, "tenants won't move."
They were criminals, lowlifes and thieves,
maybe even druggies or worse,
because they didn't pay the rent,
without remorse, into the street
they should be sent.

Crime and decadence
is not what we see,
after peeling back layers of lies
to let the people's voice
speak loud and free,
but a family in need
of humanity and love,
not deserving to be victims of greed.

Is poor a crime?
In the fine line between
the haves and have nots
in our community and world,
we unfortunately have hard working
and willing, able bodied people
who lose out to the economy time after time.
These unfortunate souls still need a place to stay.

The man has no money to move
because he builds houses
and the economy doesn't need men
who work with boards, plaster, nails
and fulfill other homeowner's dreams.
It is a vicious, sad irony
that he could build a mansion
but can't afford the wood
and concrete it seams.

He wonders if being poor is a crime,
as he stares out into the empty street,
trying to comfort his fiance,
and tiny baby,
so pure innocent and sweet.
His wheelchair bound mother,
sits sad and confused,
but he vows to protect them
with a pride and strength like no other.

The young mother is barely scraping by,
doing her best to keep a smile
on the baby's face,
so pitiful to hear her cry.
Temporary Aid to this needy family
gives them less than $300 a month,
but her rent is $400 you see.
One of her family members
digs deep to send her
the other $100 dollars when she can.

$100 dollars a month in Food Stamps
to feed a mom and baby
is barely enough to
fight back hunger cramps
it is true,
but the poor baby
has committed no crime.

The man has made mistakes in the past
and paid for his misdeeds long ago,
but he carried a label for life
that makes finding work hard
With a dark mantle he is cast,
his applications marked 'discard.'

Yes he paid for his errors then,
and continues to pay again and again.
He wants to provide for his new family
and aging mother, disabled,
but he has been labeled
by those who would exhume
skeletons best left in a closet.
Perhaps they disregard the advice
given by the Lord above
who said "judge not least ye be judged."

Now they never leave the house
except in an emergency,
fearing harassment
from those who should protect
and serve you see,
they believe poor equals crime
and attempt to persecute these people
time after time.

Social morals that the town
is pushing upon these families,
for being unwed and having
made mistakes in the past,
could result in homelessness
for three generations,
who relied on a broken promise
of the town fathers to help
that was quickly forgotten
by those who's abuse of power
has become renowned.

It's not their fault that their landlord,
didn't pay her taxes
and the town acquired the property
by hook, crook, or accord.
They had finally found
a home that they could afford, (barely)
a roof over their head
and all the small things
that make a group of people
rich or poor a family.

In our town the charter says
the Board of Selectmen
and the Town Administration
are the Overseers of the Poor.
I guess they don't want to do
their job any more,
so they pass judgment so neat
and cast the poor into the street.

Is Poor a Crime?
The local newspaper in big bold letters
proclaimed, "tenants won't move."
They were criminals, lowlifes and thieves,
maybe even druggies or worse,
because they didn't pay the rent,
without remorse, into the street
they should be sent.


The newspaper article:

http://www.sunjournal.com/story/296491-3/RiverValley/Evicted_tenants_wont_move/

and an online interview piece:

http://www.therumfordreporter.com/

posted 21 December 2008
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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1510767-Is-Poor-a-Crime