Stop Being Poor

FAR 167

Expected Air Date: 07/09/18


I was minding my own business at the pool the other day and a young man walked by with a shirt that read “Stop Being Poor.” My first reaction was to be a bit startled, then amused. I thought to myself “he’s inviting a heap of criticism upon himself — I wonder if he can take it?” Then I realized we were at the pool deck of our building in midtown Atlanta and it’s unlikely he would run into any poor people at this venue. Of course if we want to see poor people all we need do is step outside the door of our building and start walking in any direction. We won’t go a full block before we come across someone with their hand out, making various claims about their homelessness, joblessness or poverty.

This show is about real estate and real estate investing, and the subject of poverty is not a happy one. In fact it might be one we prefer not to ever think about. But it is ever with us and should be considered in light of our larger responsibilities to ourselves and the people around us. So later in the show I’m going to tackle the subject and see if I can’t bring it around to a real estate connection somehow.

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Topic: Stop Being Poor

The shirt: “Stop Being Poor”. I did some research and learned there was an entire meme on the internet about this.

  1. Poverty is a choice, especially in the United States of America.
    1. Many are born into poverty and don’t realize the opportunity.
    2. Our role is to present the opportunity, not create dependency.
    3. Anyone can take the next step.
  2. “The poor will always be with you.” -Jesus. Why?
    1. Some (non U.S.) lack any reasonable opportunity.
    2. Some do not have the ability to lift themselves out. Mental illness or physical disability.
    3. Some are trapped by culture – unaware of the steps out of poverty.
    4. Some are unmotivated. America is a land of opportunity unparalleled in the world and throughout history. It is also a country where you can do absolutely nothing with your life and receive handouts that make your living standard better than much of the rest of the world. Many will choose this. If you’re unmotivated, if you’d rather sleep than work, if you prefer entertainment or fill in the blank with your substance of choice rather than advancing yourself, I’m ok with that. Just don’t complain to me about being poor. And please have the intellectual integrity to stop blaming everyone else.
  3. So what do we do with the poor?
    1. Feed, clothe, and shelter them.
    2. Show them the way out.
    3. Feed, clothe, and shelter even those who choose to remain poor. Why? Because this is how we live out beautiful concepts known as mercy and grace. We have all received mercy and grace and perhaps the most Godlike thing we can actually DO with our lives is to be conduits of mercy and grace. What are mercy and grace?
      1. Mercy: NOT getting the negative results you deserve.
      2. Grace: Getting positive blessings you don’t and possibly couldn’t deserve.

Anyone hearing my voice right now has the opportunity to do something different with your life, if you want to.  If you think there’s a better life out there and you want it badly, you have the freedom in this country to pursue it. There’s so much more to life than being rich in material things, but if that’s what you want, all you have to do is learn what rich people do and do that. Whatever it is you want to achieve there is almost certainly someone out there whose path you can follow.

The real question is not whether there is opportunity. The real question is, how badly do you want it?

What can we do?

  • The people on the street?
  • The impersonal unknown “poor”
    • Let the state help?
    • Do your bit.
  • The working class poor?
    • Affordable housing
    • Rent with respect for human decency and dignity.

“There will always be those who take advantage of the less fortunate. You don’t have to be one of them — even to compete with them.”

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Motivational Thoughts for the day

  • When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful.
  • Eric Thomas

2 thoughts on “Stop Being Poor”

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