Sign up today and save up to 67% on a Hartford Courant digital subscription
CT Now

Talking Politics: Hoping For Just A Little Bit Of Help

The Hartford Courant

When Jadira Pagan was 8 years old, she watched as her mother was stabbed in the throat by a boyfriend. The girl then spent the rest of her childhood bouncing from home to home because of her mother's ensuing drug addiction.

Pagan wants so much more for her two sons — Elijah, 6, and Matthias, 3 — but at the moment she has no job, no place to live, no high school diploma and no help from either of the fathers of her children. She and the boys have been living at the Covenant Shelter in New London for the past few weeks while Pagan tries to find her footing — not to mention a job.

"There's nothing out there at all. It's horrible, really horrible," says Pagan, 23. "I've looked in newspapers. I've been online. I do that every single day, but nothing. I just don't know what to say."

Or do, for that matter, at this point.

Pagan is caught, like so many other single mothers without an education or job training, in a web that is partially of her own making. She knows it, too. All she needs, she says, is a little help, a push up.

That's why she intends to vote for Barack Obama next month.

"Not because of his color, but because he's trying to make a big change. We need all the help we can get," Pagan says.

But Pagan is quick to add that she doesn't expect handouts. She just wants a shot at a future — one that includes a good job, a home and a decent education for her sons — and she doesn't believe that a Republican administration will do anything to help people like her.

"Not all people like us, poor people, want to take everybody's money for free and just sit and do nothing. Some people do want to do something with their lives," Pagan says. "I grew up in a family who settled for their welfare checks, their SSI [Supplemental Security Income]. I'm not that kind of person."

Pagan, who is Hispanic, says that she is uninfluenced by Obama's race.

"I don't care who you are or what color skin you have, as long as you bring something good to this country and especially helping the poor, that's all I really care about, for my kids."

Copyright © 2015, CT Now