Ending welfare will mean that more white women than ever before in our nation s history will enter the ranks of the underclass. Like their black counterparts, many of them will be young. Workfare programs, which pay subsistence wages without the backdrop of free housing, will not enhance their lives. As the future “poorest of the poor” they are far less likely to be duped into believing their enemies are other economically disadvantaged groups than their predecessors. Since they are
the products of a consumer-oriented culture of narcissism, they are also more inclined to be indifferent to their neighbors’ plight. Constant deprivation creates stress, anxiety, along with
material woes. But their desire to ease their pain can change indifference into awareness and awareness into resistance.

bell hooks. Where We Stand: Class Matters. New York: Routledge (2000) 118

A passage of hooks’ insightful book that is especially relevant in an election cycle that may lead to a President Romney and a Vice-President Ryan, both stark opponents of the affordable health care act and other vital programs.

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