H.L. Mencken: Crime Cause Slanders Poor

Posted by admin on Thursday, August 23, 2018

H.L. Mencken Money Quote saying many people believe that crime is a result of poverty and use that belief to insult the poor. H.L. Mencken said:
 
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor Quote
 

“The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor” — H.L. Mencken

 

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This quote by H.L. Mencken seems to be arguing against the idea that poverty alone causes crime. Mencken describes claiming that poverty causes crime as a “kind of slander on the poor”, implying it unfairly blames and makes assumptions about impoverished people.

The best interpretation is that Mencken is suggesting poverty does not inevitably or solely lead people to criminal behavior, and that there is an element of personal choice involved regardless of one’s economic circumstances. Mencken appears to have been challenging a common argument at the time which stereotyped the poor as more criminal or lawless due simply to their lack of wealth.

Birthday: September 12, 1880 – Death: January 29, 1956

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