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What Will the Poor Get Out of a 'Fiscal Cliff' Bargain?

John Lund/Blend Images/Getty Images
John Lund/Blend Images/Getty Images

Writing at the Huffington Post, Tavis Smiley evaluates the current "cliffhanger" through the lens of poverty.

First, we hit the debt ceiling. Now we're hanging over the fiscal cliff. Next, the walls start to close in on millions of Americans, particularly the poor.

The news media is covering this story everyday as if this is some kind of "cliffhanger" when, in truth, it's really not. I can tell you right now how this movie ends. Indiana Jones is not going to show up and save the day. Whenever this so-called "grand bargain" is reached, it may be grand for the elite, but not so much for the nation's poor. I would love to be wrong about this, but signs point to yet another piling on of the poor. Eventually, if not immediately.

Yes, I know folk on both sides of the aisle in Washington have drawn a line in the sand, but have you ever actually drawn a line in the sand? They are quite easily erased. When they finally stop posturing and positioning and get down to the business at hand, the ultimate question is how "pragmatic" will the Obama White House be when it comes to cutting programs for the weak and the vulnerable? Will poor people be given priority? It's the predicament that the less fortunate find themselves in perennially — will their suffering be rendered invisible yet again?


Read Tavis Smiley's entire piece at the Huffington Post.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.

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