My experience at Operation HOPE tells me that most people ignore or set aside the financial conversation in their lives, because of one simple, primary reason. Shame.

Most people are simply ashamed to admit their don’t have a clue about money, the language of money (financial literacy), the economy and how it works, free enterprise, capitalism, or GDP (‘what’s that,’ most people might say). And don’t ask most people if they understand the Wall Street Journal, and what IT is talking about. What’s the OCC, derivatives, the SEC, FINRA, swaps, et all.

And don’t then start talking about poor and working class, and even middle class people and families in trouble. For a long time, approximately 50% of all those in mortgage foreclosure in this country! never even called their lender. It wasn’t that the lender game a bad answer. Folks just never called.

Part of my mission in life is to banish this so-called shame. There is no (or should be no) shame in having problems. I have problems. We all have problems. There is only shame in doing nothing about them.

Benjamin Mays once said, “it must be borne in mind that the tragedy in life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. Not failure, but low aim is sin.”


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