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The Man in the Dog ParkComing Up Close to Homelessness$
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Cathy A. Small

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501748783

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501748783.001.0001

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Blind and Delusional

Blind and Delusional

(p.132) 9 Blind and Delusional
The Man in the Dog Park

Cathy A. Small

Jason Kordosky

Ross Moore

Cornell University Press

This chapter argues that when it comes to homeless people, the American public is blind and delusional. It reflects on how the economic policies in the United States have resulted in much greater gains for those with more than for those with less, while those in the bottom tier of the economic system have recently been losing ground not just relatively but absolutely. As a result, poor people are less well positioned than ever before in recent history to be able to afford basic needs, especially housing. What has happened to the country's poorest is that a growing percentage are “severely rent burdened.” This often makes it difficult to afford food, clothing, transportation, and medical care. Moreover, it leaves many in the vulnerable place where there is no way to save money and no way to weather even a small storm. Any misfortune can leave one short or late with their rent, often leading to eviction. All of this is why so many Americans live on the edge of homelessness. The chapter then considers “the high cost of being poor,” explaining how the poor depend on alternative financial services.

Keywords:   homeless people, American public, economic policies, United States, economic system, poor people, housing, eviction, homelessness, alternative financial services

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