Government must address poverty issue

To the Editor:

Here are some quotes on poverty and civilization by notables from the last few centuries:

? Adam Smith – “No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable.”

? Samuel Johnson – “A provision for the poor is the true test of civilization.”

? Pope Paul II – “A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members.”

? Hubert Humphrey – “The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those that are in the twilight of life; the sick, the needy and the handicapped.”

? Mitt Romney – “There are 47 percent – who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe that government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to – you name it. These are people who pay no income tax. My job is not to worry about those people”

It appears that many Republicans, Romney included, don’t see a large and rising amount of poverty as a problem that needs to be addressed by government. If we stay on this path, maybe the U.S.A. will eventually be classed as a third world country.

Jack Conaway

Amherst