Whoo-hoo! Sent final edits and photographs off to my editor my upcoming book, a biography on Labor Organizer Fannie Sellins. But a writer's work is never done.
I've been doing more research on the project, as I look ahead to promoting the book when it comes next year.
The past couple days I've researching poverty in America, and decided to share with you some of what I've found.
Fannie lived in the early 1900’s, often called the Gilded Age of American Industrialization. Steel, coal and railroad magnates wore diamonds and lived in mansions. Their workers wore rags and lived in primitive conditions.
Today American children live in a new Gilded Age where a corporate executive can drop $100 on a single restaurant meal, while a single mother cannot afford meat for her children.
The latest United States census report shows one out of seven Americans live below the poverty line.
The number of children in poverty is higher yet. UNICEF reports that since the start of the global recession in 2008, that number has increased in the United States by 32%. Since the recession has leveled off, the number has not dropped.
The National Center for Law and Economic Justice Inc. reports that close to 23% of American children (age 0-18) are poverty-stricken as measured by the U.S. census.
With the exception of Romania, no developed country has a higher percentage of kids in poverty than America, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNCF).
An article in Forbes Magazine disputes these stats on child poverty. Forbes, a leading source of news for American business and financial people in this country, published the assertion that the statistics were unfairly twisted to suggest the level of poverty in the U.S. is higher than is true.
However, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) reports that the number of poor kids (age 0-17) in the U.S. exceeds 20%. The OECD is an international economic organization of 34 countries founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade.
There will always be disagreement and debate about how to handle the issue of poverty. But while the posturing continues and the arguments fly, it is the innocent and helpless who suffer. The largest group of impoverished children are age 0-3.
Our children thirst for hope. They hunger for compassion, and for leaders like Fannie to stand up for them. Whether one agrees with her methods or not, Fannie Sellins put her principles and all her resources into action. She did not relent in her efforts to help the poor, even when her life was at risk.
I'm fascinated to discover little-known history, stories of people and events that provide a new perspective on why and how things happened, new voices that haven't been heard, insight into how the past brought us here today, and how it might guide us to a better future.
I also post here about my books and feature other authors and their books on compelling and important historical topics.
Occasionally, I share what makes me happy, pictures of my garden, recipes I've made, events I've attended, people I've met. I'm always happy to hear from readers in the blog comments, by email or social media.