BENEFITING: BORGEN PROJECT
Today in the U.S., a rough economic recovery and chronic fears about national security can feel all too consuming. Seemingly paradoxically, many of the answers to these U.S. concerns might lie outside of its borders. And they may not be what immediately come to mind.
Fighting global poverty is an essential tool for ensuring that U.S. national security interests are upheld. Chuck Hagel, the current U.S. Secretary of Defense, said in 2008, “The impoverished regions of the world are the most unstable, volatile, and dangerous areas representing the greatest threats to America and the world.”
Nearly half of the world’s children live in poverty. Many never receive primary school education and spend each day malnourished and starving. It is not difficult to follow the trail from poverty to despair, which allows extreme ideologues that make boastful claims for solving these issues to appear as attractive options for a better future. In other words, dangerous regimes and non-state actors such as ISIS in the Middle East and al-Shaba’ab in Africa do not gain footholds based on ideology alone; they only thrive in regions already deep in despair.
By placing a focus on the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the U.S. can help prevent the world’s most impoverished people from becoming future security threats. By simply allowing people to possess the belief that tomorrow will be brighter, they may think twice before picking up arms against the U.S. and the rest of the globe.
Bringing millions of families throughout the world out of poverty not only assists in U.S. national security interests, it allows for upward social and economic mobility. The benefits from these fresh sources of income come in the form of new markets that will seek to consume a variety of goods. Countless jobs and businesses can be created and will benefit from the untapped marketplaces that previously had no buying power. Eradicating global poverty should not be seen as just giving aid to the poor; it should be looked at as an investment in future growth of the U.S. economic system.
Altruism is not just a philosophical term; it is an idea that the United States was founded on and what made it a powerful nation in the first place. The U.S. was built on the idea that we should lend a hand those who cannot help themselves, even when it is not in our own self-interest. Because the rare opportunity has arisen in which US domestic self-interest and just doing the right thing are aligned, nothing should be holding the nation back from fighting global poverty.
The Borgen Project lobbies major political players at all levels to support poverty reducing initiatives, and this is why you should give!!
 Hagel Speech: “Memo to the Candidates”. Brookings Institute. Retrieved September 5, 2014 from http://www.brookings.edu/~/media/events2008/6/26 hagel/0626_hagel_speech.pdf
 Global Issues. Retrieved September 4, 2014, from http://www.globalissues.org/article/26/poverty-facts-and-stats
 United Nations Millennium Development Goals. UN News Center. Retrieved September 5, 2014, from http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/bkgd.shtml
 Global Poverty and U.S. Jobs – The Borgen Project. The Borgen Project RSS2. Retrieved September, 6 2014, from http://borgenproject.org/global-poverty-u-s-jobs/