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The Story of Rosa Lee
 
  The Story of Rosa Lee
The Story of Rosa Lee And More Communication - Essay Samples And Term Paper For Students
This paper discusses the welfare system as illustrated by journalist Leon Dash in his articles about Rosa Lee Cunningham.
Response to Rosa Lee, by Leon Dash For four years, journalist Leon Dash interviewed and worked with Washington, D.C. resident Rosa Lee Cunningham. He published her story in a series of articles, which was later synthesized and expanded into a book entitled Rosa Lee. The story of Rosa Lee Cunningham, as presented in Rosa Lee by Leon Dash, represents a worst case scenario. It is an example of what can happen in a nation where so many people depend on handouts from the government to survive. Not only did Rosa Lee and her family depend on welfare and poverty payments to support their destructive lifestyle, they were also let down by public education and the criminal justice system. Dash's biography of Rosa Lee highlights some of the many failings of the current government; if these problems were corrected, horrific stories like that of Rosa Lee and her children might occur less frequently in the United States. One theme that repeats itself many times in Rosa Lee is the degree to which the monthly welfare checks were a fixture for Rosa Lee and her children. Dash describes, for example, how Rosa Lee's daughter, Patty, always knows and is excited when the checks arrive each month. Dash quotes Patty: "Mama, have the checks come in yet?" Rosa Lee's family is not motivated to change precisely because their lifestyle is subsidized by the government. Their destructive behaviors evidently pose no significant monetary threat to their ability to live, albeit uncomfortably. The readiness of the United States government to dole out checks to people like Rosa Lee, despite her extensive criminal records and those of her children, is indicative of a more systemic, paradigmatic problem in the attitudes of Americans. This fact is especially evident in Leon Dash's behavior during his time working with Rosa Lee. Dash explicitly remarks that he is a journalist and not a social worker, and resolves not to give or accept gifts or money from his...   MORE >>
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