gifts from a cruel god

Homeless Child Spared Usual Fate of Homeless Children Due To Rare Intellectual Gifts

Here is an “inspirational story” to make everybody happier about homelessness, etc.: A 17-year-old girl has been saved from homelessness, and a celebrity has given her poor family a home, all because the 17-year-old girl is an immensely gifted science prodigy.

After becoming a semifinalist in a prestigious national science competition, a homeless Long Island teen has earned an invitation to the State of the Union address — and a home for her family.

Samantha Garvey, 17, who has spent her childhood moving between shelters and rented homes, is in the running for the $100,000 Intel Science Talent Search prize for her research on mussels. Upon hearing Garvey’s inspirational story, Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) offered her a ticket to the State of the Union. “I want her to be an example of perseverance in the face of adversity.”

See kids, there is hope! You just need to be “gifted” (by Jesus) with abilities that far exceed the average, and then you need to be noticed by some politicians and celebrities looking for an Inspiration Story. Next thing you know, you’re watching Republicans refuse to give applause to the president!

Average and less-than-average poor people — by definition, the vast majority — must remain poor and homeless, however. [TIME]

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About the author

A writer and editor of this website from 2006 to early 2012, Ken Layne is occassionally seen on Twitter and writes small books and is already haunting you from beyond (your) grave.

View all articles by Ken Layne

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76 comments

  1. Preferred Customer

    From the article:

    "Israel said he also hoped to force the President and his colleagues to consider a difficult, crucial question: how can a family with a genius-level child fall into homelessness?"

    Because, you know, smart people are always rich, just like rich people are always smart. Isn't that what Social Darwin taught us?

      1. bureaucrap

        Actually, I thought Newt said that the kiddies would not get paid munnies for their service. The "volunteer" labor was just to illustrate to them "the value of work." So they'd be no help to the parents (who were just fired from THEIR jobs as janitors so the kiddies could be put to work for free).

        1. Biel_ze_Bubba

          Working for free teaches the value of work? I know the GOP playbook had some crazy shit in it, but that takes the prize.

    1. BlueStateLibel

      I agree – why wasn't this girl performing janitorial work to raise her family out of homelessness???

  2. bumfug

    Not to take away from her achievement but this reminds me of those ubiquitous, exploitative, emotionally manipulative "news" stories where some kid is surprised by Mommy or Daddy coming home from the war.

  3. mavenmaven

    Haha, then she gets to Washington just in time to find out that all grant support for scientific research is being decimated….

    1. Sparky MacGyver

      It's really okay, because the hedge funds are doing cutting edge research and development that will come up with the scams and frauds that will power the next century.

      Screw the next penicillin or curing cancer…we need the 21st century's "Donkey Punch".

  4. Callyson

    Garvey and her family had been living in a house on Long Island until they were evicted on New Year’s Eve. Injuries from a car accident had required her mother to abandon her job as a nurse’s assistant, leaving Garvey’s father, a cab driver, unable to pay the bills
    New Year's resolution for the banks: FFS, have the decency not to carry out evictions during the holidays at least…
    Assholes.

      1. KenLayIsAlive

        She let Injuries from a car accident keep her from work! That's lazy to me. And the dad? He could have doubled his work to 24 hours day, could he not? Lazy I say lazy.

        These two loafers should really watch the next State of the Union address, I hear there may be some kind of inspirational moment of some type.

    1. spinozasgod

      WHAT no health insurance or mounds of savings to pull them through…..lazy socialists wanting tax payers like me to bail them out of trouble. How will they learn their lesson if they don't freeze to death on the streets?

    2. Chichikovovich

      It was a bad idea for them not to dip into the Cayman Islands savings. Tax consequences be damned.

  5. Mumbletypeg

    This is the most inspiring budding-genius-in-the-rough since Good Will Hunting made advanced mathematics seem cool. (Or, since higher math made Matt Damon seem cool?) Congratulations Samantha! – - and although science is your forte, keep those math skills whetted for when it's time to parse out the fine print on your student loan details. Some are variables, some are constants; none of 'em terribly coefficient if you know what I mean.

  6. freakishlywrong

    “I want her to be an example of perseverance in the face of adversity.”
    Admirable, but the Republicans don't give a flying fuck.

  7. Barb

    What's with this happy and uplifting story? Who are you and what have you done with our Ken?
    Just kidding, I saw this girl on TV and she made my heart smile.

    1. flamingpdog

      I'm always happy when someone finally finds the right combination of maintenance-level psychoactive meds.

      1. Barb

        I just saw the Ellen show and they gave this girl a $5,000.00 gift card to J.C. Penny, which will buy a lot and a $1,000.00 gift card to Whole Foods, which will buy 2 tomatoes and a tub of ice cream.

  8. SorosBot

    In Newt's world she would have been more productive, working as a school janitor and to busy to do that silly scientific research.

    1. GhostBuggy

      Money in pockets! Spreading sawdust on puke! These are the pillars of a nation, not your science and other such wizardry!

  9. BarackMyWorld

    "If this homeless kid can excel in science, then we're spending too much on these other kids."
    -conservative thought process

    1. bureaucrap

      "If this homeless kid can excel in science, that means he/she might edge out my brat to get into Princeton. No more teaching poors to read!"

      /fixed.

      1. MightySix

        Right! Because rich alumni parents buying their kids a place at a nice Ivy League school (or Duke or USC) is not AT ALL like white affirmative action. Nope.

  10. Guppy

    "You just need to be “gifted” (by Jesus)"

    In science? Oh no, Teabagger Jesus would want this one burnt at the stake.

    Actually, drawn and quartered for the science part, with the remains burnt because she's a woman.

    1. Chichikovovich

      That's what St. Cyril's people did to Hypatia (well, not drawing and quartering exactly, but just as bad) and I observe that this didn't prevent the "Saint" from going in front of his name. It may have helped.

  11. bureaucrap

    "You there — genius-level kid — come up here, we gots a present for ya.

    "The rest of ya — heads down and keep rowing!!!"

    1. Chichikovovich

      Ah, science nerd chicks. MM… That casts my mind back to when I was courting Chichikovna when she was in medical school. I would go with her to anatomy class and stare at her body.

      Badabum! Really, folks, settle in for awhile! I got millions of 'em.

      1. flamingpdog

        Peeking at the bodies in the human anatomy lab as I walked by the open door would always make me feel blue.

  12. Sue4466

    Isn't this the plot of feel-good hit Extreme Makeover: Home Edition?

    Helps keep the poors in line to think if they were just good enough other people would give a fuck about them.

    1. jus_wonderin

      I always think of the Extreme Makeover situation as "How the fuck are they going to pay the taxes on that…now???"

    1. veritass

      And gets straight married. Then she'll be in god's good favor and signs of his approval will be bestowed upon her in the form of tax shelters and country club memberships.

    2. WhatTheHolyHeck

      Sorry, but she's well past the only time she'd have had any real significance to him. She's been out of the womb for years now.

  13. Biel_ze_Bubba

    Newt was really worried about this story … until he found out that she's a white kid. (Whew! Narrative intact!)

  14. twoeightnine

    The celebrity didn't give her the home, Suffolk County did. Also that celebrity who will use any feel good story to get her name out there and then plaster the story with her name didn't give her the actual scholarship money, AT&T did.

  15. hagajim

    I'd be really inspired – if there weren't thousands more kids and adults out there homeless and of the non-genius type. Heck a homeless kid did well on Idol (I didn't see it I promise) and that was another feel good story. I feel sorry for the average fucks who can't get help from their Congressperson.

  16. actor212

    Question: She's a girl who is a semi-finalist for the Intel prize, so that means she must have an awful fucking lot on the ball. Which means at SOME POINT, Steve Israel's office must have heard SOMEthing about her, because, you know, Brentwood High is not exactly your basic inner city school where children being shuttled from domicile to domicile is about as common as getting nits. The school is regularly in the news for its sports teams and its marching band. Somewhere along the line, you know, the principal must have bragged about this girl in his school smart as a whip but you know, was homeless.

    WHERE THE FUCK WERE YOU, ASSHAT?

  17. Goonemeritus

    “$100,000 Intel Science Talent Search prize for her research on mussels.”

    What’s to research the baby Jesus put them on earth 5000 years ago and Noah saved them from the flood on the hull of the Ark. It was good of him to save a mating pair and not use them all up during Ark pasta nights.

    1. Biel_ze_Bubba

      If Noah was saving mussels from the flood, he was a lot dumber than I thought. (Probably explains why he left the dinosaurs behind: the whales took up so much space.)

  18. Chichikovovich

    I hear you. Whenever I want to lose a lot of weight I just make sure I'm at a few Med. School faculty dinners where Chichikovna and her fellow healers can be counted on to slip into shop talk. ("I'm not sure how to proceed with the infected colon that was admitted yesterday. Maybe it's resistant to the antibiotics we've been using. The abscess is still full of pus and the stool still has that odd smell,….") Sometimes I don't feel like eating for days.

  19. Monsieur_Grumpe

    Well that's nice. Now all we have to do is find the inner genius in the rest of the homeless.

  20. MaxNeanderthal

    Of course, I only adopted my eldest daughter because I knew she'd have a frightening talent for music. I anticipate a retirement early as she travels the world's concert halls.. Or does this make me the moral equivalent of the Bachmann?
    I think I need to reconsider my moral stance here…

  21. Rowdy5000

    Check out the article's Related Topics: barack obama, ellen degeneres, Long Island, research, … teenagers

    All of the worst things in the world in one string of topics, amiright!?

  22. lulzmonger

    So THAT's where I fucked up when I was homeless in high-school: I should've applied for that Mensa Card (that is, if I could have somehow paid the fee).

    D'OH!

Comments are closed.