The hidden plague of everyday violence is undermining efforts to eradicate extreme poverty worldwide.
It’s true. But I never knew it until I read The Locust Effect.
Released today, The Locust Effect offers a gripping description of the common violence that devastates the world’s best efforts to end global poverty. Authors Gary Haugen and Victor Boutros bring decades of experience defending the poor to write this non-fiction volume. Their game-changing book will fundamentally change the conversation on global poverty.
(FREE Locust Effect book giveaway offer at the end of this post!!)
What is the Locust Effect?
Like the destruction wrought by a plague of locusts, everyday violence lays waste the development efforts introduced to help the poor. Lawless chaos robs impoverished families of the ability to use the new schools, new medical clinics, and new water wells. Access to these resources is essentially denied when violent perpetrators roam unhindered to rape, beat, and rob vulnerable members of the community.
In a recent op-ed article in the Washington Post, Gary Haugen wrote:
In the midst of great and worthy efforts to help the global poor build better lives, donors and development institutions have paid little attention to the painstaking work required to ensure the things that are indispensable to stopping violence: professional and accountable police; and functioning prosecutors, courts and child welfare agencies. (Haugen, Wash Post, 27 January 2014)
Haugen and Boutros aptly title their book after the all-consuming locust horde. The insect analogy vividly represents the vast crisis of common violence against the poor. A UN Report stated that 4 billion people live outside the protection of the law!! They face sexual violence, forced labor, property grabbing, and abusive and arbitrary detention.
The Locust Effect seeks to raise the issue of criminal justice systems onto the table of every conversation on global poverty. Alongside discussions of health, education, food and housing, the agenda must include justice issues. Unchecked lawlessness undermines all acts of care we give to the poor. Let’s work together!
Who should read The Locust Effect?
The Locust Effect is an excellent book for all who have a heart and a passion for ending global poverty. The authors do an excellent job weaving in true stories of crises to highlight the reality of their points. They put a face on the statistics. But the stats also add value by quantifying the depth and breath of the need.
Scholars and researchers will find an incredibly well-researched volume in The Locust Effect. The comprehensive endnotes encompass international reports (World Bank, United Nations, Oxfam, etc), academic journals, congressional documents, books, and so much more. Every non-profit, NGO and mission director working to end poverty should have this resource on their bookshelf.
Why Invest Time to Read The Locust Effect?
1 – The Locust Effect gives a common language for discussion on everyday violence. The book sorts through this enormous issue and presents manageable chunks for discussion, study, and resolution.
2 – The Locust Effect highlights and catalogs the players, organizations and researchers who are studying, working on, and impacting the lives of people who are wounded by violence.
3 – The Locust Effect authors are genuine and are the real-thing! They passionately believe and hold firm to the message of the book. All royalties (not just some… but ALL royalties) from sales of The Locust Effect go to help fight violence against the poor.
Can you help?? Together, we can make a difference! Every person, every voice, every comment…all add up to a game-changing event! .
1 – Purchase and read The Locust Effect. (Amazon or Barnes & Nobles)
2 – Use your voice and social media connections to spread the word about The Locust Effect book. Share this post on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to encourage awareness AND book sales.
3 – FREE book giveaway!! Leave a comment below about this post and your name will be entered in a random drawing for a free copy of The Locust Effect! Drawing to occur in mid-February.
Posted by Sharon R Hoover
Hand Photo Credit: TomConger via photopin cc
Hand/wall Photo Credit: vk-red via photopin cc
Carol Brown says
Additional fallout is that violence traumatizes and debilitates a population. There are skills our brains need to learn in order to develop and maintain healthy relationships–they are LEARNED, not instinctual so when parents are traumatized they may be unable to pass these brain skills on to their children. The child who grows up without a skill cannot pass it on. Therefore these relational skills can drop out of family lines and society as a whole. These skills need to be re-learned and reintroduced into societies. Praise God, He made our brains able to learn and change regardless of our age!
So we need the practical helps of wells and agriculture, the social helps of police and courts and access to the relational help so people have the brain skills needed to maintain the relationships of a healthy and effective society. Interesting and reflective of The Trinity–Father, the life and law giver, Jesus the Savior takes care of the practicals and Holy Spirit, all about connecting us to Father and Son! Love it.
WordPress.com Support says
So, so true, Carol! The trauma and ripple effects continue well beyond the violent act. As communities address lawless chaos, the violence decreases … and victims (and their families) can receive the after-care so desparately needed. God is indeed good! Hope is renewed!
Stephen W. Hiemstra says
This book, The Locust Effect, touches a nerve with me. I became an agricultural economist in college because I wanted to work to alleviate world hunger. As I studied the nature of the hunger problem, I became more and more convinced that in a world without limit to the production of food, people still starved to death. Worse, most of those starving were young kids.
The engines of hunger that came out of my studies were war, institutional failure, and the politics of exclusion. Violence is necessarily a part of all three.
War. Hunger arose in many places as a policy of war. Boycotts, regional strangulation, and destruction of livelihoods are common instruments of modern war.
Institutional failure. Many times efforts by international organizations to help just make things worse. Ex-patriots are hired to help international efforts to intervene, but it may come at the cost of depriving local governments of their most talented students. Local governments may, in addition, spend all their time catering to foreign visitors (even religious groups) and neglect their own duties.
Politics of Exclusion. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the British Empire created a demand for its textiles and industrial goods by discouraging local production in its colonies. This was called mercantilism. Similar policies are pursued today by international organizations through subsidies and by countries through the way they subsidize local products and restrict importation of international productions. Most recently (1990s), for example, the NAFTA agreement allowed U.S. corn to flow into Central America at U.S. prices for the first time. This undermined the livelihood of local farmers who then had little choice but to migrate to the U.S. looking for work.
Once again, each of these factors has a core of violence that leads to poverty and hunger.
I look forward to reading The Locust Effect and reviewing it on my blog (T2Pneuma.net).
Sharon R Hoover says
Thanks for adding to the conversation, Stephen. The causes of poverty are indeed complex and multi-layered. The Locust Effect’s contribution to the conversation is addressing the institutional failures as you mentioned. Broken justice systems deter other efforts to bring development to communities. I look forward to reading your review on the book!