The world as it has always been.

This world is not a perfect place and life can be very challenging. Do you want to hear my sad story? Probably not, and I don’t blame you for that.

There have always been poor people throughout most cultures in the world.

The question is how does a person or a group of “poor people,” get out of poverty?

Well, first poverty must first be examined and defined. Are the people who live high in the mountains of Nepal poor because they live in houses heated by a water buffalos and that don’t have electricity? I don’t think so. They have great family units for the most part and the children learn the value of hard work and cooperation early in life.

Is learning the value of and the results of hard work cruel? I don’t think so. It is preparing your children for life and reality.

Are you doing your children a favor by “protecting” them from the harshness and dangers of the real world? Well, that depends.

If you lock your children out in the snow, I would say you are being cruel. But if you point out to them that life owes them nothing and that they will have to make their way in a world that at times is indifferent to everyones needs and wants at best, I would say that you are doing your job.

Yes there are people who cuss, do drugs and worse. Do you keep your children away from them or do you expose them to these “people” and then explain that what they are doing is at least, antisocial and counter productive for them in the long run?

Odds are, that some of their good friends will end up doing many stupid and illegal things. What do you do then? If you haven’t told or shown your children the way to behave, then it’s on you. You don’t have to lock them up in the house, but you should, as a parent, expose them to the world as it is, in some way, not as you would like it to be. I have found that seeing examples of good and bad choices and the aftermath of both, make life choices easier.

I was lucky to have worked my entire life in people’s homes and apartments. What economic level one comes from determines little in life. The decisions that one makes in life determine everything. I have worked in filthy houses of the rich and famous and the poor. I have worked in clean houses of the same.

You all have rich or comfortable friends and family members who have had tragic outcomes with their children. Their wealth wasn’t the reason their children went bad or had bad things happen to them. The reasons are many and complicated, as are the reasons for poverty.

Some cultures place a very high value on education. That can be a good thing. Other cultures don’t need high levels of formal education to survive. If you are a farmer¬†out in the African country side or a farmer in the South American country side, advanced algebra might not be very necessary or important in your life.

If you are living in modernity and want to work in the modern world, perhaps algebra might be important. One rule does not apply to all people or all cultures.

Remember, the world will always need tradesmen and farmers. They are not less than the doctor or the lawyer. They are an integral part of the fabric of life. If you are a farmer with a degree in something, then my hat goes off to you. If you happen to be a great farmer or tradesman my hat still goes off to you.

Those of us who live in modern America, which one might call “Disneyland,” and where most things work pretty well and most people get enough to eat, might forget what the real world is like.

THAT IS WHY TRAVELING IS SO IMPORTANT. NOT EVERYONE LIVES LIKE US AND SEES THE WORLD IN THE WAY THAT WE DO!

Most of the people that I grew up around were drunks, drug addicts and criminals. I am none of those things. I watched and listened and discovered the results of that life style. I was exposed to them. Perhaps a little too closely and too much, but it worked out well in my case. I quit smoking at twelve, by the way.

I don’t drink, but I don’t care if you do. I eat some meat, but I don’t care if you don’t. There is not one answer to the questions of life. There is more than one way to measure poverty. Being narrow minded and thinking that you are always right is poverty.

Poverty defined: the state of being inferior in quality or insufficient in amount: The poverty of imagination.

How about the poverty of tolerance for others and their ideas. Life is not easy. Life is not simple. To make it out to be either is poverty of thought. Be nice to each other!

Look for my novel, Grandpa Ernie’s Secrets on Amazon. It is written by me, R. C. Hand