Globalization and Poverty

During our second day in Tigre, we visited a community health center called CONIN in a much more impoverished area of the municipality. CONIN provides daycare, nutrition, and child development specialist care for the children of mothers who attend workshops to learn to cook, work, and parenting skills. The main aim of CONIN is to combat malnutrition in the community’s children and help their mothers, who are often uneducated and trapped in the cycle of poverty, learn to support the family. A center such as CONIN is important in an area where 70% of the children are underweight because of malnourishment.

This site visit was eye opening because it showed the stark inequality in socioeconomic status within one municipality, which is analogous to the inequalities faced throughout the country. Our visit to Delta Tigre yesterday was marked by yacht clubs and colorful waterside properties. Today, the neighborhood around CONIN featured homes with tin roofs and dirt roads where children are malnourished and parents are uneducated and unable to work. As Argentina’s inflation rate climbs, so does their impoverished population, and their middle class shrinks. Globalization plays a role in this process.

Globalization is seen as a good thing, and it should be. Globalization allows for the spread of ideas and technology from one place to another. Without it, we would all live in our isolated areas and major advancements in technology would not be made. On the other hand, globalization can also exacerbate economic inequalities in a community.

There will always be socioeconomic inequalities. Some people will always be richer than others, but this is usually balanced out by the middle class. However, with globalization, the middle class can be weeded out significantly. Globalization brings new technology and products to countries. Those who are already well-off have the means to purchase these goods and will continue to get richer because of it because of the new opportunities to innovate. Those who cannot afford to purchase these new goods will fall behind the rest of the population and be unable to catch up. This deepens the divide between rich and poor and effectively eliminates the middle class. With a diminished middle class, those in the lower class have no upward mobility and this establishes and propagates the cycle of poverty.

Globalization is massively beneficial, but there are also alarming side effects that must be controlled for, because it is unacceptable to see people with yachts and mansions and those who cannot feed their children living minutes from one another.

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