I’m going to start this blog right off with a word of warning. This is an area that I get very passionate about. I am so frustrated about the current mindset of so many people regarding entitlement. Now, I really won’t be surprised if some people reading this get offended. I’m not going to apologize for offending you, because if enough people are offended maybe some changes will get made.
I also want you to know, that I am fully open to consider any thoughts, comments or suggestions you may have.
By now you are most likely wondering what on earth I am going to write about?
Imagine standing in line at the grocery store, going over what’s in your basket, calculating to make sure you are within budget, and out of the corner of your eye noticing the cart in front of you. As you glimpse at the groceries there, noticing steak (you have 80/20 burger) and shrimp (yours is the 2 for 1 tuna), and the 2 liters of name brand soda (you chose store brand); you can’t help but overhear the customer mention to the cashier how she can’t believe that her food stamps got lowered. She continues to complain about how she knows she did everything she could to get the most. She has herself listed as homeless and said that her baby daddy didn’t live with her, and she has her parents pay for her phone. You notice as she says this, that her nails are perfectly manicured and that she appears to be pregnant. She confirms it, as she says that she knows that the WIC she will be receiving shortly will bring in more, and says that’s a good thing, because she can hardly get by on what she gets.
Are you kidding me?
I thank God that for our family of four even with only my husband working – we have never had the need, nor qualified for government assistance for food. That’s a good thing as it always meant that we’ve been able to have a job and provide for our family. I am not bragging about this, as I know it is simply by God’s grace that this is true.
On the other hand, I see no shame in receiving assistance for legitimate need. As well as no shame in receiving assistance for a help situation; to get one through the tough times.
I am aware that there are plenty of families out there receiving assistance that without it would be hungry; many are being wise with their food stamps, these are not the ones I am shining a light on.
What irks me is seeing people abusing the system. What irks me, is people getting the benefit of using food stamps or whatever they call it these days, to eat better than those who don’t qualify. I watched other families around us making just a little bit less and receiving assistance, some for legitimate need, others not so much.
I have literally seen people buy animals, then use their food stamps to pay for their food! Seriously?! If you cannot afford to feed your child, I don’t believe that you should add animals to your household. Let me explain here, in case you thought that food stamps would purchase a bag of Puppy Chow; sorry, no – but what I have actually seen people do is purchase chicken, steak,
rice and use that to feed their dogs. Or tuna fish for cats.
Unfortunately, I have also been contacted over the years with people asking me to purchase their food stamps, because they want cash. So, their grand idea is to take money from what is allocated to feed their family and get cash to purchase whatever it is that doesn’t qualify for food stamps.
I warned you that I get extremely agitated about this, and I am hoping that maybe by speaking out, you may have some ideas to help these situations.
But wait! There’s more!
Another thing that gets under my skin with this, would be the apparent lack of education regarding meal preparation and planning. For example, the size portions that toddlers may eat is much smaller than an adult portion. I have literally seen people purchase and make an individual steak per child, and then when the little one doesn’t eat it all; it is then scraped into the dog’s dish!
Growing up, my mother was the queen of leftovers! Unless there were only a couple tablespoons of something left in a dish, it was covered and put in the refrigerator. Tupperware was a necessity in our home, as it was used daily to serve and store. Yet, I have watched in disbelief as someone scraped over half a pan of food into the trash. When I asked why, they replied, ‘oh! We don’t like leftovers’. What?!
John 6:12 (New International Version Bible) ‘When they had all had enough to eat, he (Jesus) said to his disciples, “Gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.”
I know it’s most likely prideful of me, but I like fact that not only do I serve leftovers; but the majority of children that have eaten at my table over the years not only ate them, but they also now serve leftovers to their families.
I have heard people complain that they are out of food stamps halfway through the month; when I know that some families that have less money to spend on food make it through the month. I’m aware at least a portion of the issue there is a lack of knowledge of bulk shopping. Meal planning and food waste would be other reasons for running out of food. As sad as it sounds, another reason is using food stamps for those who don’t have them, in exchange for money for non-food items.
There’s got to be some better options to this. There has to be a change to battle mis-use and yet conquer hunger. I hope that my voiced frustration has caused your mind to churn, and that some solutions have surfaced to help. The cry for help is real, the need is blatant, somehow, we need to crack down on the dishonesty and also the food waste, and at the same time begin educating people on money saving techniques.
What would you recommend?
How does this blog make you feel?
Speaking out, Amy