Lack of affordable housing is obviously a huge problem and barrier to breaking out of poverty.
Alex Brown

Are you saying that widespread homelessness in America is what gives people the “will to progress”? I have a hard time believing that. If that were the case, the countries with the most homeless would be the most driven to excel. South Africa and Brazil would be doing much better than the US.

I think the original post is more illustrative of why people are willing to work hard and try: because there’s some expectation that things might work. Even if it’s a long shot, the possibility is clearly there. I think, for Asian Americans, it’s a particularly kind time. It wasn’t always like this.

There’s still a lot of racism against Asian people in America, but it’s nothing like it used to be. I’ve read numerous stories of the 1950s, when people who got college degrees from UC Berkeley, Stanford’s rival, and went back to working in the farms, picking fruits and vegetables for a living, because they couldn’t find work.

That’s unthinkable today, at least for Asian Americans. We can get jobs. Maybe not all jobs, but there are a lot of good jobs, and some great ones.

I don’t think this is quite the same for African Americans with college degrees. They still have a harder time getting a job than a white ex-convict, according to some study.

Do Black South Africans feel like any effort to work harder or get an education will lead to more money, a raise, a promotion, and a higher status in society?

I think the lack of opportunity to benefit from hard work, study and sacrifice is what saps people of their “will to progress”.

I seriously do not think guaranteed housing would lead to the demise of ambition in this country.

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