- Star News -
Freedom. That is what our country is built on. The freedom to practice religion, speech, and chase our goals — the American Dream. Our businesses are built on these ideas. People came to this country to pursue a new life without worrying about being persecuted or quieted. They wanted to chase their passions and dreams, just like we have when creating Star Herbs Tea. Our small family business comes from the love of picking fresh herbs and appreciating the power of nature.
The first amendment states; "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." It represents our freedom. We are allowed to protest what is wrong, speak up for what we believe in, and practice any faith. However, to obtain these rights, the change needed to happen. Historical figures like Abraham Lincoln were advocates for change in America and pushed for rights for all people. He fought for the emancipation of all slaves and fought for the presidency to accomplish this task. When the 13th amendment was introduced, many people refused it. The bill made it through the U.S. Senate but was kept back by the House of Representatives. This didn't stop Lincoln from getting involved in the legislature and advocating for it with each representative individually. To him, slavery was the one issue that was tearing the country apart. It created tension and racist ideologies between its citizens and divided the North and the South. African Americans needed support from our government to finally be freed from centuries of bondage.
In today's world, a divide is also happening in the economy—big business versus small business. The number of family businesses and other small ones is becoming smaller and smaller. They are being replaced by larger corporations who are dominating the economic market. Unique small shops and family-owned businesses are becoming hard to find amidst the rise of new technology, corporations, and the decline of entrepreneurship. Technology is slowly replacing many jobs, taking away customers from small businesses who share the same abilities. An example is online shopping. Almost everything can be found on the internet, which leaves fewer people traveling to smaller, family-owned shops. Big corporations have an extensive range of products that you can choose from without leaving the comfort of your home. The current decline of entrepreneurship is taking a toll, and millennials are the current age group where creating new businesses takes place. However, they also recognize the risks of starting a new business in today's market, and the downsides of what happens if it doesn't work out.
Change is necessary to close the gap between big business and small business. Just like we have advocated for change in our country's history, we need to support small businesses. It isn't easy to thrive and succeed in this market. Each one is built of their owners' dreams and passions, but they struggle to compete in this economy with automation and big business. To survive, small businesses must have money, loyalty, and protection. Instead of being pushed out, our government should take steps to support struggling businesses and promote entrepreneurship. More businesses equal more jobs and employment. We believe that the government should support small companies, family businesses, or community organizations to encourage and stimulate the market to achieve a more diverse economy. Every bit of support we receive pushes us closer to achieving our dream.
Homelessness and Poverty Within America
As our world descends further into the unknown, there are many problems that American society is facing. As well as the new events like COVID-19 and the upcoming presidential election, homelessness, and poverty has been an issue for a long time. Although poverty has slowly been declining since 2000, many people are still homeless, especially in wealthy states like California and New York. As the cost of living continues to rise, more and more people will become homeless.
The COVID-19 pandemic has only enlarged the spotlight on the homeless community. During the lockdown, everyone was told to stay home as much as possible, but we needed measures to protect the homeless who could not. The homeless community is a group that is most susceptible to the virus because they cannot obtain the proper protective gear.
In states like California, homelessness is on the rise. “Homelessness increased in the City of Los Angeles by 14.2 percent over the year, to 41,290 people — a smaller, if still alarming, increase than the year before, when there was a 16 percent jump” (NY Times). There is still a noticeable increase, even if this year it is a little smaller.
With the current crises of businesses closing and people being out of work, homelessness is a very real possibility for a lot of people who have been on the edge of poverty. Unemployment skyrocketed when our country began to shut down at the beginning of the countrywide lockdown.
In our state of Colorado, approximately 9,619 are experiencing homelessness since 2019 (usich.org). And as of 2018, “Colorado is the third-highest state in the nation when counting 3,250 homeless families with children” (Denver Post). Although the total percentage of homeless people is slightly decreasing, families with children are suffering more than any other homeless group. Places like the Samaritan House Shelter in Denver, Colorado have battled the fight against homelessness for years. Last year alone the Samaritan House helped 1,405 individuals including men, women, veterans, and children, provided 80,120 nights of shelter, and prepared 466,899 meals. These charities have been a prime example of the kindness of others and how much can be accomplished when we come together to help one another.
However, having enough room for people in need is another problem that shelters deal with. There are two biggest shelters in the Denver, Colorado area that accept anyone; the Denver Rescue Mission, and the Salvation Army Center. But they are full and are struggling to find enough room for more. Most of the other mission shelters and church shelters are also closed at the moment because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Homelessness is an issue that we must solve together, even if our country is divided. The current world pandemic and the many businesses that have closed down (either temporarily or permanently), have fueled the rise of homeless people within America. Millions are relying on unemployment through this devastating time, and some cannot make ends meet. Before the pandemic, homelessness was a rising concern, and it will only continue to get worse. One of the goals of Star Herbs Tea is to help the people living on the street, but there needs to be more action taken by this country to fight it. Our country and our people need to unite to improve and fix these problems during this challenging time. By donating to the links under the project idea section of our website, you can join us in fighting homelessness in our area. If you want to help closer to home, consider donating to a local shelter in your area. To us, everyone deserves a home.
Thank you, for your help and support.