Mitt Romney recently addressed the “plight of the poor”. “We have a very ample safety net and we can talk about whether it needs to be strengthened or whether there are holes in it, but we have food stamps, we have Medicaid, we have housing vouchers, we have programs to help the poor.”
Is this going to be the Republican approach to solving the problem of poverty? Are we going to do just more of the same? Is this a Republican suggesting we shore up our broken, social welfare system?
It reminds me of that old proverb that says: “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime.” Where is Romney’s compassionate conservatism? The poor need to be valued. They want to feel like they have some worth. Giving them a handout is like feeding animals at the zoo. They desire to be set free from the bondage of poverty. They don’t need nor do most of them want a handout, they want a job. They want to find a way to earn a living, care for their families and legitimately earn the respect of others by being productive citizens and making meaningful contributions.
The Republicans need a candidate that is innovative, a candidate who will apply new ideas to solve age-old problems. Instead of sewing new patches on old garments we need to replace failed systems with something that works. We don’t need more empty suits in Washington, we need true statesmen who aren’t afraid to risk their political careers to build a better country.
I hope Mr. Romney will use his "poverty gaffe" to share some genuine ideas about how his team intends to address social welfare and poverty in American.
Kevin Probst - Teaches History, Government and Apologetics at the high school level in Columbus Georgia.