- Faith & Family
We once believed that if you worked hard every day, paid your taxes and obeyed the law, that upon retirement you would be able to live out your life in relative comfort. But that was many years ago. That was before pension and retirement funds were wiped out by shady businessmen on Wall Street and Main Street U.S.A. That was before record unemployment hit every state while those still working were forced to accept concessions impacting both their health care and take home pay.
Now we hear about double-digit cuts in federal funds that will severely impact cities like North Miami, the City of Miami and even Miami-Dade County. Mayors of these towns say they will find a way to maintain services for their citizens — we just don’t see how.
A basic concept about following a budget is you can’t include things for which you cannot pay. The federal government may have the luxury of going into debt but not local governments. The dollars must be in the coffers so that the bills can be paid.
We are facing difficult economic times but we have weathered such storms before. The tragedy is that those who can least afford it are the ones who are bound to suffer: senior citizens and children. Seniors have paid their dues and supported their communities with their taxes. Many are now helping to raise grandchildren. As services are being canceled, we hear more testimonies of seniors and young children going without food or needed medicine. Agencies like Curley’s House that feed thousands of Liberty City residents each month wonder how they will survive.
Maybe now is the time to focus on our own shores for a change, our own communities and our own people. It’s admirable to fund charitable efforts in far away places. But right now, charity needs to begin at home.