It is time to think in a different way.
sur le banc

Dear Forum on Overcoming Extreme Poverty,

Here is an article of mine that was recently published in a newspaper in my city.

Every time I write articles on poverty and social exclusion, I receive many phone calls with approvals from both friends and unknown people.

This is very important for me because my aim is to sensitize public awareness on solidarity towards poor people because now it is time to think and act in a different way.

It is time to think in a different way

Even if the question of social exclusion has become a structural phenomenon of our society and it is both a National and European political challenge, we could find different solutions to solve this problem in our city only if politicians and authorities shall be up to deal with this serious social impact.

The problem of homeless people and of those who more and more are falling into the spiral of poverty, which, as a social phenomenon, shows only a tip of a vast submerged, is more serious and widespread than it might seem at first sight. For this reason, this topic requires all our attention : we need to be, above all, aware that the phenomenon must be examined in a deeper way and included in a new political program for our city.

However, it seems that many politicians and authorities are dormant and too little attention is given to the humanitarian aspects and the deep causes of this social upheaval. Some people consider that the consequences of this crisis must still come out. We can see already that the unemployed are responsible for their own family; they are extremely worried for this new situation of great social unrest. There is also the phenomenon of young minds running away from our country with serious moral and material damages; anyway, we can witness a general feeling of insecurity and despair among citizen : some of them become depressed, others commit suicide because they have lost all hope.

Above all, unemployment can be considered like a time bomb….., therefore it is necessary to eradicate this “social cancer” as soon as possible. There are already some alarming symptoms such as violent demonstrations and destructions, increased xenophobia, and a lack of trust in the society and its institutions. However, if well-off people think that this problem does not affect them, they are wrong and, on the contrary, they should worry more than anyone for this latent state of uneasiness and rebellion that grows more and more. In their own interest, they should be more sympathetic towards people in need, trying to help them with donations or other interventions, to be able to relieve some of this enormous social suffering.

It is time to think in a different way and then act accordingly. It seems to arise again a problem already present in the eighteenth century : “re-distribution of wealth” (Adam Smith and others.). It is necessary for our society to re-examine the importance of the various economical sectors and social income brackets in order to treat them adequately; above all it is necessary to replace those who, unable to manage this situation, pursue only personal interest and privilege, ignoring the social urgency and the general suffering of our nation.

It is already time to gather all healthy social forces and humanitarian organizations including those who should institutionally be above parties to intervene and collaborate with targeted projects and adequate solutions.

A greater coordination between institutions and citizen is not only useful, but necessary to transform the procedures into effective models of interventions. We know that a feature proper to human beings is the confidence in the future, the hope to find a right solution for their problems; therefore we hope that, in the long run, the best social forces will prevail and this difficult situation will be overcome.

Sergio P., Italy