OK

Sometimes, statistics by themselves cannot impress upon our collective selves the severity or absurdity of a situation, particularly when the numbers are too big, too difficult to digest.

Sometimes, it takes a graph, a representative model, an image.

Here, I present such a simple image that is rooted, at its core, in impossible statistics. Witness:

Occupy Sanity

I've read the statistics on homelessness in America and the statistics on home vacancies driven, in large part, by the foreclosure crisis and the criminal behavior of our financial sector's largest players.

However, not until viewing the image above did I feel – in my emotional core, the core of the brain that actually is devoid of language and yet drives decision making – how severe this injustice is.

The statistics bear it out. There are 18.4 million empty housing units in our country, a country with 131 million total units (which is 14 percent, or 1 in 7). And there are between 700,000 and 800,000 homeless Americans.

That's approximately one homeless person for every 24 vacant housing units available.

Words fail.

However, organizations like Occupy Our Homes aren't failing. Every day people in the Occupy movement are fighting big banks to keep families in this country from being foreclosed upon. Fighting to keep another person from being homeless, and from another housing unit becoming vacant. Fighting to change the narrative, to make this national blight more visible, more known.

And that's what spreading the above image can do. Make this injustice more known or understood in a way the mind-numbing statistics cannot, perhaps inspiring others to get up and do something with this newly-understood knowledge.

I will be.

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Follow me on Twitter @David_EHG
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Originally posted to David Harris-Gershon (The Troubadour) on Fri Feb 03, 2012 at 07:51 PM PST.

Also republished by Income Inequality Kos, Dream Menders, and Writing by David Harris Gershon.

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