If not having enough to make ends meet makes you feel low, her cathartic poem will really resonate.

It's a word you've come across before. Austerity.

What is it?

Some claim it " generally refer[s] to the measures taken by governments to reduce expenditures in an attempt to shrink their growing budget deficits."


But often, it's really when the governing people overseeing a failing economy decide to place the burden of its failure on the poor and already struggling while allowing those profiting to continue to profit and not act to fix it.

One woman made a video that is a cathartic rallying cry against this approach and those who espouse it. But before that, some quick context on the a-word.

Austerity looks like some things you're already used to.

Like working more than one full-time job to make ends meet.

(Click images for links to related stories.)

Image from Elizabeth Police Department.

Like taking away relief for the poverty-stricken.

Image (altered) by Eden, Janine, and Jim/Flickr.

While not reducing anything else.

Image (altered) by Groupe Canam/Wikimedia Commons.

Image (altered) from National Priorities Project, used with permission.

That's even though polls show that most Americans prefer cutting our defense budget to reduce our deficit INSTEAD of cutting programs like Social Security and Medicare.

Like employees having to beg, plead, and fight just to get a living wage that keeps up with inflation.

Image (altered) by Annette Bernhardt/Flickr.

Changing austerity measures starts with changing how we value our own work.

Like the frog in the pot that didn't know it was boiling until it was too late, some of us have gotten used to these things. But some of us haven't and aren't willing to. Like Agnes Török, who filmed this moving poem that puts into words the frustrations so many of us have felt.

Her words are inspiration for those of us who've internalized economic disparities as our own character failures.

Go forth. Know that we are not worthless. Know that we are the hands and minds that build society and the future. Know austerity measures when you see them. And speak up every time.

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Davina Agudelo was born in Miami, Florida, but she grew up in Medellín, Colombia.

"I am so grateful for my upbringing in Colombia, surrounded by mountains and mango trees, and for my Colombian family," Agudelo says. "Colombia is the place where I learned what's truly essential in life." It's also where she found her passion for the arts.

While she was growing up, Colombia was going through a violent drug war, and Agudelo turned to literature, theater, singing, and creative writing as a refuge. "Journaling became a sacred practice, where I could leave on the page my dreams & longings as well as my joy and sadness," she says. "During those years, poetry came to me naturally. My grandfather was a poet and though I never met him, maybe there is a little bit of his love for poetry within me."

In 1998, when she left her home and everyone she loved and moved to California, the arts continued to be her solace and comfort. She got her bachelor's degree in theater arts before getting certified in journalism at UCLA. It was there she realized the need to create a media platform that highlighted the positive contributions of LatinX in the US.

"I know the power that storytelling and writing our own stories have and how creative writing can aid us in our own transformation."

In 2012, she started Alegría Magazine and it was a great success. Later, she refurbished a van into a mobile bookstore to celebrate Latin American and LatinX indie authors and poets, while also encouraging children's reading and writing in low-income communities across Southern California.

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via Pixabay

As people get older, social isolation and loneliness become serious problems. Many find themselves living alone for the first time after the death of a spouse. It's also difficult for older people to maintain friendships when people they've known for years become ill or pass away.

Census Bureau figures say that almost a quarter of men and nearly 46% of women over the age of 75 live alone.

But loneliness doesn't just affect those who reside by themselves. People can feel lonely when there is a discrepancy between their desired and actual relationships. To put it simply, when it comes to having a healthy social life, quality is just as important as quantity.

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