Why Poor Americans Are So Patriotic

Even in Hard Times, Pride in Country Offers Comfort, Security, and the Hope That Life Will Get Better

Why do the worst-off American citizens love their country so much?

Patriotism may be defined as a belief in the greatness, if not superiority, of one’s country relative to others. Depending on how one defines the term exactly, somewhere between 85 to 90% of America’s poor are “patriotic.” They would rather be citizens of their country, for instance, than of any other country on Earth, and they think America is a better place than most other places in the world.

This is striking for at least three reasons. First, those are …

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The Ghetto’s Complex and Troubled Legacy

Ghetto: The Invention of a Place, the History of an Idea

In 2017, we often hear the word “ghetto” come up in music lyrics and casual conversation, out of the mouths of politicians and activists. We know what it means; it …

Welcome to the Affluent Central Coast, California’s Child Poverty Capital

How the Rising Cost of Living and, Paradoxically, the Availability of Jobs Are Tough on Families

Californians used to envy residents of our beautiful, wine-and-wealth-drenched Central Coast. Now we have reason to pity them.

And not just because Nicole Kidman has thrown her star power into producing …

How an Idyllic Italian Village Was Crippled by Family-Centrism

A Watershed Study Connects Nepotism to Poverty, Distrust, and Neglect of the Public Good

More than 60 years ago, an American family arrived in a seemingly idyllic town in Southern Italy. Stone buildings resembled “a white beehive against the top of a mountain.” Donkeys …

A Hungry Child Cannot Learn

Buying Shoes, Growing Lettuce, and Treating Tooth Decay at a San Bernardino Elementary School

Eric had multiple cavities and several abscesses. His younger sister Madeline was not in much better shape.

“He has something wrong with each tooth,” the dental student said in amazement. “He …

Californians Want Much More From Our Neighborhoods

We Love Our Communities but Think They Should Make Us Healthier, and Even Find Us Jobs

California is a state of large things: A 1,100-mile coastline and giant mountain ranges and big roads, bigger cities, and the biggest vistas. In such a sprawling place, with so …