There are more myths than facts about poverty and the poor in America. We all need to start thinking and acting differently by seeing the poor as the key to a stronger economy for all.

Here are just five of the most common wrong assumptions we make about the poor:

False Assumption #1: Money will solve all the problems of the poor.

The Truth: If I gave a poor person a million dollars, there's a high likelihood that they will be poor again in six months to a year. Money and charity are only short-term solutions to helping the poor. Knowledge and resources in the form of financial literacy – combined with self-confidence, self-esteem, and aspiration – will lead the poor to a promising and different future.

False Assumption #2: Handouts to the poor are bankrupting the U.S. economy.

The Truth: During the elections, many candidates argued that nearly half of American households receive government benefits, but recent research by the National Poverty Center shows that a declining proportion of these benefits go to the poor, and most of what goes to the poor is in the form of in-kind benefits, not cash. In any case, the Center on Budget and Policy Studies confirmed in its research that total welfare funding was 0.47% of the federal budget – not exactly enough to bankrupt a national economy.

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Watch the 4-minute movie on How The Poor Can Save Capitalism here.

Listen to the first national interview for How The Poor Can Save Capitalism, on the Steve Harvey Morning Show here.

Join the national HOPE 100-City Book Tour here



Posted by Natasha Eldridge, Senior Fellow, Office of the Chairman

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