November has arrived. And with it money from the 2009 stimulus, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, is being withdrawn in certain areas. In particular, money that was going to SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), or food stamps. $5 BILLION. (This is on top of the sequester cuts already in place on SNAP.) This is the equivalent amount to all the charity that goes into the Food Bank (to aid those in poverty get food) system over an entire year. What more can charities do, as they are already strained before the cuts are factored in?
This is a troubling situation. As it is, many families using SNAP struggle to afford meals past the third week in every month. Now, $36 a month will be taken from families, on average. For some of us, $36 is nothing. But when you are living in poverty, when you are stretching your budget to just sustain you and your kids, when you have to send your kids to school hungry, it's everything.
Sadly, conservatives don't see this. As it is, if you are in poverty, and have ANYTHING (a phone, a computer, a car, microwave) you are judged cruelly. You are mocked. Ir is a vain disinterest in the needs and troubles of your fellow citizens.
If you listen to these people trying to survive, you will hear about the jobs they aren't hired for, or the disabled kid they are spending their days nursing, or the fact they are working at a place like McDonald or Walmart and are expected by bosses to survive on SNAP and Medicaid support.
The end of this stimulus aid will hurt so many. And it will mean money that won't get spent on commerce. 47 million are now being affected by these cuts. And as the economic conditions in this country continue to be rough, more may needs it. But everyone is expected to do with less...Well, everyone poor (or in the middle class) is. This seems like a horrible time to cut this investment in this country's future.
We can be sure Republicans in the Congress will not be acting to help them people. Because it doesn't stop there. In the Senate they are working on ways to CUT another $4 BILLION from SNAP. And in the House, they are eager to cut $39 BILLION.
Here's a map of how the November cuts will hit states. Feel free to imagine what another $4-$39 billion will hit your state, and the whole country.
Republicans sneer and call the people using SNAP lazy. They call them leeches. They call them freeloaders. 1 in 7 Americans?
Is that what this looks like to you? I can't help but remember the condescending and low brow piece Tucker Carlson had done for his website, where he had an intern "live on" SNAP benefits. He didn't really, but it was an excuse to mock people like those above. Republicans have gotten very use to punching down at those without power.
Some Republicans even have called SNAP (funds to help people in poverty pay for food) is a cruel abuse of the poor...Imagine that? Imagine the mindset that embraces that thinking, and then goes on TV to declare it?
And they get enough votes to go to Congress.
The crassness towards the poor is not new from conservatives. It's just gotten louder and more effective at leave those in need out in the cold.
Here's Chris Hayes look at this dire problem.
I am at a lost of patience with the GOP's cold indifference to these people.
A reminder about the economic impact of SNAP.
Every $1 returns $1.79 to the economy. How can this not sound like a good investment to the GOP? It helps feed kids and others in poverty and funnels money right into the businesses on Main Street and around your neighborhood. Is it because it isn't going straight to the top of the largest corporations to be trickled down? (The way all is born and blessed to travel. So sayeth the Board.)
It makes economic sense AND helps those in need. The GOP response? Where's the punishment? Where's the humiliation?