Povertyby Representative Joseph R. Pitts
Posted on 2014-01-10
PITTS asked and was given permission to address the House for 1
minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
Mr. PITTS. Mr. Speaker, it has been more than 50 years since
President Johnson declared war on poverty. I don't doubt that President
Johnson had good intentions, but intentions don't win wars, and poverty
is a stubborn opponent. Fifteen percent of Americans still live below
the poverty line, after trillions spent by the government.
In December, I brought together community leaders and national experts to discuss how we can reinvigorate the city of Reading and other cities in the 16th District of Pennsylvania. From this conference, we are moving forward to get institutions to work together strategically and think differently about attacking the problem.
Government at every level and communities leaders need to cooperate and make sure there are opportunities to start new businesses and attract more development.
Perhaps most importantly, we need smart strategies to help kids get a good education. This has to include building strong families, since statistics show that children raised by only one parent are far more susceptible to temptations of drugs and gangs and other problems.
It is time we rethought our strategy and rededicate ourselves to try helping needy Americans by removing barriers for wealth creation.