A student of mine once asked a police officer what invisibility meant to him.
He said that things that are ‘in context’ are invisible. He mostly sees things that are out of context. More on the notion of context later.
I suspect that’s how we become tolerant to poverty. Alternatively, we could use Zygmunt Bauman’s argument and suggest that we must make the poor others somehow different from ourselves to divorce ourselves of responsibility, in a resource limited world, for their ‘lack’ – in a pie for you to have more, someone else must have less.