I am increasingly feeling uncomfortable about the rhetoric surrounding benefits and people who claim benefits in the UK. If you read the press it feels as if The Powers That Be have decided that we are split into a nation where you are either a striver or a sponger
Strivers work hard, want to get ahead, have to set an alarm in the morning and are Good People
And everyone else is portrayed as being work shy or trying to get something for nothing
I can see the attractiveness of trying to portray the world in black and white but this just isn’t true
What about the people who need help?
Who can’t work?
Who want to work but can’t find a job?
Who are sick?
Who are caring for someone who is sick?
What about those people who have worked hard and have suddenly had something go wrong?
I want to live in a society where people who need it get help
Surely that is the fundamental basis of the Welfare State? Surely it exists so that we don’t have a country where there is no support for the most vulnerable in society? Surely we don’t want to head back to an era of workhouses and enormous chasms between those that have and those that don’t
What can we do to change this?
If you look at the numbers surely we should stop focusing on the 1% who claim fraudulently and focus on the 99% that need our help? Yes we should investigate the fraud but it is only a small element of the picture
I pay my taxes because I believe that if I am fortunate enough to be earning enough to need to pay tax then I should pay up – perhaps we should focus on the £10 billion of legal and illegal tax avoidance by the richest people and companies, an amount that is 10 times the amount of fraudulent claims
Just think what good things could be done with that money – just think how lives can be changed positively
Can we not start thinking about the 99% and how we can do the right thing for them?