Which is like the THEME here at Unnatural Forces, and there is going to be a follow-up post to the narratives around marriage thing, but:
What I found interesting about this article from the NY Times on how states are pretty much reneging on their promises for welfare reform and screwing over poor people by cutting essential services, thus forcing people to go on welfare who wouldn't otherwise go on if they could get subsidies like they are supposed to, is the narrative that the first young lady profiled holds.
I urge you to go read the article, but essentially, this young lady is being forced to go onto welfare after Arizona's childcare subsidies were cut and she can no longer afford someone watching her child while she works. And this is a very unfortunate and preventable situation. But even as she is now entering the ranks of those who have been forced onto welfare, the woman continues to insist on the conservative propaganda-driven stereotypes that people on welfare must be "lowlives" with "no backbone" who merely "live off the state."
And her narrative doesn't change, even though she now must apply for welfare. She doesn't see herself as one of Those People, although she now is. She is now one of the people those terrible human beings who denounce welfare recipients as "lazy" and "moochers off the state" will be talking about. And instead of realizing that thinking for the bullshit it is, she makes it clear she is NOT like Those People. Because in this false narrative, good, hardworking people like herself can't be Those People on welfare; Those People are lazy good-for-nothings. And the very basic reality of what-the-fuck-is-going-on doesn't make her challenge the applicability of that narrative at all.
I find this really, really sad. Empathy runs in such small supply here. As does critical thinking, I suppose. I once told my kids the most powerful things in the world are stories. I still think I was right.