Alan Jennings op-ed titled “9 things to do to end poverty”. By his own admission he and CALV have failed to “achieve victory” on the very same goal. Common sense would therefore dictate that his advice be greeted with a good deal of skepticism. Rather than deal with his argument point by point it is perhaps wiser to question his premise that his/CALV’s approach to ending poverty works and we just need more of it. What Alan seems not to have learned, after a lifetime of effort, is that in America only the poor can truly save themselves from poverty. If it were otherwise, the fruits of Alan’s and the government’s best intentions, efforts, and investments would be apparent. Sadly, the nation’s approach to ending poverty has failed. Why? Because Alan Jennings and other well intentioned liberals who, with the best of intentions, fashion themselves as champions of the poor, make the faulty presumption that the poor need a savior rather than a goal. With the exception of his fourth point which states that women make poor choices in men, Alan’s op-ed is filled with what society must do for the poor rather than what those in poverty need to do to lift themselves from poverty. The truth is all the white guilt and good intentions won’t change the outcomes of those born into dysfunctional circumstances unless a message of self sufficiency is delivered with the aid. The lesson that waiting for the government or one of its agencies to solve one’s problems and/or resolve personal fiscal situations is an exercise in extended futility has been learned by all except those who fashion themselves has champions of the poor. Alan’s last point perhaps sums up the problem neatly; “Get off the couch. Stop griping and do something about it. Get together with someone with whom you don't agree but with whom you share a common concern. Look for common ground. Agree on a solution. And get to work. Justice shouldn't have to wait.” Mr. Jennings doesn’t hesitate to deliver the message that “the reader/society”” needs to work harder to solve the issue of poverty. Alan’s recipe for success seems to perpetuate dependency by asking only those who don’t need assistance to heed his call for action and imply to those in need that their only hope is outside help. Denying agency to the poor serves the interests of no one other than their ostensible saviors. In admitting failure Alan should recognize the flaw in his/society’s current approach, and then all those who seek to end poverty should look for solutions that actually work.