Our country’s history involves some real tragedies, such as slavery, the near extermination of Native Americans and the oppression of women. Today, another tragedy is the unwillingness of Congress to do anything major about poverty.

To give some type of overall perspective regarding who’s poor: women, 12.9%; men, 10.6%; disabled, 25.7%; children, 16.2%. The poor have a shorter life expectancy than the average person.

There are 38.1 million Americans who are considered poor and another 93.6 million who live close to the poverty line. When one considers that our country is the wealthiest in the world, there can be no justification for failure to address this problem.

When compared with other nations, we do rather poorly for our children — 1 in 7 live in poverty and they’re more than likely to drop out of school. That fact is very costly on different levels and has a negative impact on our entire country.

It’s always interesting how a lot of people will express their outrage against abortions, but say little or nothing regarding children who need to receive meals at school or who lack adequate clothing. It should also be noted that about 50% of those who receive an abortion are economically deprived.

If there’s a real concern about abortion, then something needs to be done about poverty. Furthermore, not having an abortion for many will lead to economic hardship. A lot of problems associated with poverty could be resolved if Congress and the president decided to make poverty a major issue.

Larry R. Widdoss

Manor Township