"One of every six children in America grows up poor.

"I am asking you to imagine a wealthy family with six children. Five of the six are fed three times a day with nourishing food, sleep in warm, comfortable rooms; the sixth is sent to school hungry, sleeps in a cold room or on the streets or in a temporary shelter.` Five get regular medical checkups, all the customary shots, immediate attention when illness strikes; the sixth is plagued by chronic infections and respiratory diseases. Five are read to at night by father or mother; the sixth watches TV. Five go to good, safe schools, with books, computers, laboratories, science equipment, and well-trained teachers; the sixth is sent to crumbling school buildings, with ceilings peeling, asbestos in the paint, few books, teachers inadequate in number and training. Five engage in sports, music, and arts enrichment after school hours, attend summer camps; the sixth hangs out with his friends on the street or returns to an empty home.

"All would agree that such a family is dysfunctional. Should not the same word characterize the United States where its children are concerned?”