Are you puzzled by Jesus’ statement, “The poor you will always have” (Jn.12: 8)? Our Lord was sympathetic towards the genuinely poor. He urged some to give all they had to the poor (Mk.10: 21). They had a good chance to get into God’s kingdom (Lk.6: 20), because their spirits were freed from the entrapments of this world (Mt.5: 3). But there are the poor by profession and this kind cannot be eliminated, regardless of what shall be shelled out to improve their lot. They make it their business to be among us.
My ancestors were pioneers in Eastern Europe. Political and religious persecution coerced them to move to the Ukraine. They purchased woods and swamps and turned them into fertile farms. They lived in holes in the ground before they could build above ground. World War I hauled them off to Siberia. After the war, they started all over again. My father was inducted into the Polish army for two years and remained in the reserves. He came home, married, purchased land, built a home and shop and raised a family. World War II forced us from three different farms and homes. In Canada, working with his bare hands, father helped his five children (two died during the war) to acquire their homes and ended up with no debts and a home free and clear in the Vancouver B.C. area. During all this time and on both continents the poor were always present and not bruising a knuckle to change their lot. They became experts in manipulating the generosity of socialism.
Socialism without compassionate capitalism, I observed, cannot be extra generous with the professionally poor. From my past experience and history to back me, there is not enough capital in the world to sustain those that specialize in being and staying poor. It has become an art to manipulate the system. Particularly in this country where poverty includes the poor unions and wage earners protected by the political system in power, we are becoming by laws what other nations accomplished by bloodshed, poor. Our ingenious leaders now borrow from other nations to pay our poor. As to where these “Hand Outs” shall lead all of us is no mystery. And this is not just my opinion because the poor shall always be with us. What has and is changing is the definition. The question remains, how can a poor widow with $ 6oo per month support a poor union worker that wants $ 70 per hour (Lk.21: 2-3)? Is it irony or sarcasm? I do not think so.