The Problem of Child Labor Essay

3155 Words 13 Pages
"Please, sir," replied Oliver, "I want some more." No one will ever forget the simple plea made by the poor hungry little orphan named Oliver Twist. Nobody will be able to omit from his mind the painful blows that Oliver suffered. Nor will anyone cease to recall what it felt like to be young and helpless in a much bigger and stronger world. In an effort to bring the ostracized poverty situation of so many children to the public's attention, Charles Dickens wrote an unforgettable book to touch the hearts of millions. Whether he knew it then or not, he was also bringing a new connotation and worldwide innuendo to the term "child labor".

"Child labor," is a term that will probably never be clearly defined. The World Book Encyclopedia
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Not true. Though our intentions mean well, we cannot lose our head every time a story involving a helpless child in an uncaring society reaches the news. We must not, in our naiveness and absence of the facts, be brainwashed to believe that ending "child labor" will solve anything. For what Greene forgets to include in her definition is the one element that makes the problem impossible to deal with. For some children, "child labor," with all its abuses and exploitations, is all that stands between life and death. As much as the world's public is now aware of all the corruption behind the productivity of big international corporations, we must also come to realize the other side of the argument. The prohibition of child labor in its entirety is not the solution. It is neither possible nor probable. As long as poverty exists, children will work to stay alive. The complete and utter abolishment of child labor by "more developed countries" may hurt the poverty-stricken children of "less developed countries" more than if absolutely nothing was done.

Observe for a moment our own country's personal history

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