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Ben Carson argues that poverty is just a “state of mind”

Ben Carson, the man in charge of Housing and Urban Development — the federal agency responsible for helping America’s poor—  believes that poverty is not a socioeconomic condition but merely a “state of mind.”

In a radio interview on SiriusXM Radio with Armstrong Williams, a longtime friend of Carson, President Trump’s Cabinet member revealed his views on poverty.

“I think poverty to a large extent is also a state of mind,” he said on the radio Wednesday. “You take somebody that has the right mindset, you can take everything from them and put them on the street, and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there.”

“And you take somebody with the wrong mindset, you can give them everything in the world, they’ll work their way right back down to the bottom,” Carson added, according to The Washington Post.

Poverty, of course, occurs when the distribution of wealth in a country slights a portion of the general population. Lack of access to government services ensures these people are not provided basic needs and, therefore, they become destitute.

A change of perspective, however, would solve all of the poor’s problems, Carson suggested Wednesday. The former neurosurgeon and 2016 presidential candidate said that poor people “develop a certain mindset” that leads to a “poverty of spirit.”

Nevertheless, Carson did concede that the government can play a role in lifting people out of poverty.

“I think the majority of people don’t have that defeatist attitude, but they sometimes just don’t see the way, and that’s where government can come in and be very helpful,” he said. “It can provide the ladder of opportunity, it can provide the mechanism that will demonstrate to them what can be done.”

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

Taylor Link.

Source: Salon: in-depth news, politics, business, technology & culture > Politics

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