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111

Order Some Carryout

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Desmond, M. (2016). Order Some Carryout. In Desmond, M. Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City. Crown, pp. 111-133

115

[...] He thought a kind of collective denial set in among tenants facing eviction, as if they were unable to accept or imagine that one day soon, two armed sheriff's deputies would show up, order them out, and usher in a team of movers who would make it look like they had never lived there. Psychologists might agree with him, citing research showing that under conditions of scarcity people prioritize the now and lose sight of the future, often at great cost. Or they might quote How the Ohter Half Lives, published over a century ago: "There is nothing in the prospect of a sharp, unceasing battle for the bare necessties of life to encourage looking ahead, everything to discourage the effort ... The evil day of reckoning is put off till a to-morrow that may never come. When it does come ... it simply adds another hardship to a life measured from the cradle by such incidents."

—p.115 by Matthew Desmond 7 years ago

[...] He thought a kind of collective denial set in among tenants facing eviction, as if they were unable to accept or imagine that one day soon, two armed sheriff's deputies would show up, order them out, and usher in a team of movers who would make it look like they had never lived there. Psychologists might agree with him, citing research showing that under conditions of scarcity people prioritize the now and lose sight of the future, often at great cost. Or they might quote How the Ohter Half Lives, published over a century ago: "There is nothing in the prospect of a sharp, unceasing battle for the bare necessties of life to encourage looking ahead, everything to discourage the effort ... The evil day of reckoning is put off till a to-morrow that may never come. When it does come ... it simply adds another hardship to a life measured from the cradle by such incidents."

—p.115 by Matthew Desmond 7 years ago
127

Pastor Daryl felt torn. On the one hand, he thought it was the job of the church, not the government, to care for the poor and hungry. That, to him, was "pure Christianity." When it came to Larraine, though, Pastor Daryl believed a lot of hardship was self-inflicted. "She made some stupid choices, spending her money foolishly ... Making her go without for a while may be the best thing for her, so that she can be reminded, 'Hey when I make foolish choices there are consequences.'" It was easy to go on about helping "the poor." Helping a poor person with a name, a face, a history, and many needs, a person whose mistakes and lapses of judgment you have recorded--that was a more trying matter.

because poor people need to be perfect to deserve to live

—p.127 by Matthew Desmond 7 years ago

Pastor Daryl felt torn. On the one hand, he thought it was the job of the church, not the government, to care for the poor and hungry. That, to him, was "pure Christianity." When it came to Larraine, though, Pastor Daryl believed a lot of hardship was self-inflicted. "She made some stupid choices, spending her money foolishly ... Making her go without for a while may be the best thing for her, so that she can be reminded, 'Hey when I make foolish choices there are consequences.'" It was easy to go on about helping "the poor." Helping a poor person with a name, a face, a history, and many needs, a person whose mistakes and lapses of judgment you have recorded--that was a more trying matter.

because poor people need to be perfect to deserve to live

—p.127 by Matthew Desmond 7 years ago