States Humiliate the Poor With Food Stamp Crackdown



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No one of any political

No one of any political persuasion would argue that fraud, waste, or abuse should be tolerated. However, to deprive children of the right to swim in public swimming pools seems especially mean-spirited, especially in a state that can get as hot in the summer as Kansas. Swimming is an important skill that can save lives. The comment posted by Anonymous confuses two types of aid mentioned in the article. According to federal rules Food Stamps can only be used for food, and there are rules about which types of food may not be purchased, eg hot deli items. Sam Brownback in Kansas and his fellow Republicans wanted to prohibit welfare recipients from using welfare dollars to take their children to a swimming pool. That legislation has since been struck down by the federal government, because another provision of the law--prohibiting welfare recipients from withdrawing more than $25 per day--would have meant incurring too many bank fees.

Christine Hartelt more than 1 year ago

I've seen this happen.

I've seen this happen.

Andrea Higbie more than 1 year ago

The article states that in

The article states that in Kansas welfare funds cannot be used for swimming pools or movie theaters. Food Stamps can only be used to buy food. That has always been the case. That's why they are called "Food Stamps."

Christine Hartelt more than 1 year ago

In a state like Kansas, which

In a state like Kansas, which can get quite hot in the summer, the move to prohibit poor people from swimming pools seems especially mean-spirited. Not everyone, especially the poor, have access to air conditioning. When I was a kid growing up in Iowa, our small town had an outdoor public swimming pool that charged less than a dollar for admission. The Red Cross offered inexpensive swimming lessons to the town's children. Swimming is an important life skill; it can save a life. Moreover, it's a wonderful form of exercise for people of all ages and physical abilities. Dear Anonymous, I am tired of people taking pot shots at the poor but not having the courage to identify themselves. In Kansas the new law allows poor people on welfare to only withdraw $25 per day at an ATM. In a 30-day month, that comes to $750 dollars for the entire month. Do you really think a poor family is going to take a cruise when their monthly income is $750?

Christine Hartelt more than 1 year ago

"...measures, supposedly

"...measures, supposedly enacted in the name of cutting waste, fraud, and abuse..." Our government should take measures to prevent waste, fraud and abuse. What's wrong with prohibiting food stamp use at movie theaters, fortune tellers, cruise ships, swimming pools, and liquor stores?


Anonymous more than 1 year ago

Easy, its a gimmick to rile

Easy, its a gimmick to rile up the ignorant and easily angered. You are already pretty much barred from spending food assistance on such items and services.

Anonymous more than 1 year ago

it's about the disconnect

it's about the disconnect these politicians have from the people who actually use assistance. they already can't use SNAP cards at all those places, and if they're on TANF, who are we to tell a struggling person that they can't use a tiny portion of their money to go see a movie or go to a pool. most pools cost money to get in, and it's exercise. are we also no going to allow people on assistance to join gyms?

besides. i've been there, eating ramen or the cheapest meat available for weeks on end. it's soul crushing. sometimes you've just got to have the slightest treat, just to remind you that you're human. sometimes you have to save and struggle just so you can have a proper meal with veggies and meat that didn't cone out of a god-know-how-old can.

basically, have some empathy for these people. sure, some may abuse it, but you don't know why that person is buying what's in their cart. in the wise words of Louis CK, "The only time you look in your neighbor's bowl is to make sure that they have enough."

bob more than 1 year ago

Because even people on

Because even people on welfare have the right to a life. They should be able to take their kids to a swimming pool once a while.

Jimmy Jimmerson more than 1 year ago

It doesn't read as

It doesn't read as prohibiting food stamp use at those places. If appears to ban welfare recipients from going to them. And while I personally wouldn't be spending my limited funds at a fortune Teller, you can't really make an argument that banning the poor from swimming pools is appropriate.

Mark more than 1 year ago

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