Poverty in Canada and its Newspapers
As Marc noted, the Toronto Star is waging a journalistic “war on poverty”. The editorial in Mondayâ€™s National Post chastised “The Toronto Starâ€™s poverty scam”Â for using the Low-Income Cut-Off, a relative measure, as an indicator of poverty.
Todayâ€™s National Post includes the following letter from yours truly:
In The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith, the founder of free-market economics, wrote, “By necessaries I understand not only the commodities which are indispensably necessary for the support of life, but what ever the customs of the country renders it indecent for creditable people, even the lowest order, to be without.”
Poverty can only be defined in relation to its social context. By any measure, a disturbingly large minority of Canadians cannot afford what most of us consider to be basic necessities. Kudos to the Toronto Star for proposing solutions to this social problem rather than trying to downplay it.
Erin Weir, Ottawa