Thank you, Brian Baumgardner, for your July 12 letter, “Do summer meal programs really help?” Yes, we are feeding dependency and in the process increasing the hunger problem.

Yes, we should help the hungry but not increase the problem. Yes, Rep. Trone wants larger government program with more taxes.

Wake up, voters. Free programs will cost working taxpayers and create more large government programs, which will increase taxes even more. Free is not “FREE.”

George Johnson

Clarksburg

(43) comments

FrederickFan

I think what Mr. Johnson is trying to say is that starving children make more responsible citizens.

Or maybe he is trying to say that if you feed someone who is hungry a free meal, their entire value system, self esteem, and interest in working, built up over a lifetime, will suddenly disappear.

Or maybe he is trying to say, "Are there no workhouses, are there no prisons?"

marylandmirage

This letter reminded me of Ebeneezer Scrooge: "At this festive season of the year, Mr. Scrooge," said the gentleman, taking up a pen, "it is more than usually desirable that we should make some slight provision for the Poor and Destitute, who suffer greatly at the present time. Many thousands are in want of common necessaries; hundreds of thousands are in want of common comforts, sir." "Are there no prisons?" asked Scrooge. "Plenty of prisons," said the gentleman, laying down the pen again. "And the Union workhouses?" demanded Scrooge. "Are they still in operation?"

DickD

Some of the arguments are that children cannot learn without eating properly,  Couldn't agree more, but this is not during school time. During school time would be another matter.  Another argument is they are not being fed properly at home.  If so, why isn't social services being called as this is mistreatment of children.  It is the responsibility of social services to make sure that children do not go hungry, fed and clothed right.  If you have all of this misplaced sympathy, call social services and have them investigate.  If the investigation shows they are not being treated right, they need to be placed in a foster home, where they will be treated right.

rcfoster

The programs are needed. I would prefer to see the county churches provide them rather than the government, but we're trained from early on to look to the governments to save us all.

public-redux

Why the churches?

cleanrunoff

Won't giving these kids a leg up and food assistance just make them competitors with my own progeny for a slice of the American dream?

public-redux

The trick is to make sure they are alive and capable of being exploited by your children. So, basic literacy and sustenance is in order.

saogirl52

I just can't believe anybody could argue against giving a hungry child a meal....no matter the reason. I thought it was just kids coming across the border you didn't want to care for. Now it's kids in your own county. Maybe you'd like to end the meals on wheels program, too? Dang old folks should figure out how to get their own food instead of costing the taxpayers a $1 or so. My, God, what has happened to those posters who have grown so cold and callous to the simple needs of those less fortunate?

MD1756

From the meals on wheels web site "The cost of each meal is $7.39 and diners age 60 and older are asked to contribute what they can afford." So, the meals technically aren't free for all and they certainly aren't 100% funded by taxes. In fact, again according to MOWP web page "More than 70 percent of our annual budget comes from contributions from the community." People have grown cold and callous not to those who have emergencies (such as long term job loss due to illness, child with an expensive life threatening illness, etc.). What we object to our not making the other parent (for single parent households) pay, or if both parents are there, not saving properly before having children, etc. With climate change as a major problem to be addressed we need people to behave more responsibly and think with their brains. Don't have children you can't take care of. A good predictor would be if you can't afford your own health insurance, you shouldn't have children (a want not a need). Once children have been born, we should help them but certainly not make it easy for those who created the problem through poor decisions. I'd rather have my tax dollars go to environmental and other issues and let charities take care of children. Maybe all people with children should be taxed extra (instead of being given multiple income tax deductions and credits for their children) to pay for those who can't afford their children.

marylandmirage

[ohmy]yeah, darn kids! Give ‘em a free meal and they’ll expect us to support ‘em for the rest of their lives! By the way, since the amount of charitable donations you must give before being allowed to deduct has changed, many charitable organizations are feeling the pinch.

public-redux

What if the people in charge of charitable organizations are, like you, uninterested in taking care of children?

MD1756

Well if you don't want to make the parents responsible, and since I believe that population growth is bad and shouldn't be encouraged, except for, as I pointed out above, various emergencies (short term job loss is not really an emergency since even before having children you should save to have at least 6 months worth of expenses), if charities don't step in again, as I proposed above, how about a tax on people with children or at least eliminating all the tax deductions and credits they get for having children and that way they pay the same amount (or more if you raise taxes on them for their extra burden on governmental services, the environment, quality of life with the increasing population, etc.) as those who have no children. Taxing people with children (instead of giving them all kinds of tax breaks) would only be fair to those of us who have no children but pay a substantial amount in taxes to already educate and feed children we don't have.

public-redux

I appreciate that you don’t want to tell charities what to do. [thumbup]

threecents

Saogirl[thumbup]

DickD

At Aldi:Eggs, $.79 doz, two eggs about $.14 slice of bread, about $.10 sausage or bacon $.30milk, $1,35 gal., 8 oz, about $.09 Breakfast Total:   $.63  add strawberries $1.19 qt. about $.30 a serving  new total $.93 Or Cereal (bowl) about $.08 oz. milk $.09 coffee about $.10 (when making your own)Strawberries $.30 Total:  $.74A little more, a little less, depending on personal choice. Driving a car to school and taking child home about 10 miles round trip, cost about $.85 for gas alone.  So, what are they gaining by getting food at school, during the summer, unless it is a matter of being too lazy to fix your own breakfast.  And my mother worked, so I had to fix my own and then go to school.

hayduke2

Really - this is sad.

Dwasserba

Man. This makes me sad.

TheBackburner

Here's something that people who think like this don't understand: Making other people desperate hurts YOU. It is cheaper to buy kids food now than it will be to pay for their higher crime rates, lower economic activity, lack of competitiveness, and (if you're as lucky as you are cruel) your gated communities to keep out the "rabble" later. People by and large WANT to be self-sufficient. People who are chronically on benefits are usually chronically ill or chronically addicted or just chronically HOPELESS because people like the LTE writer won't see things from their perspective and give them a dam* break. Making desperate people more desperate doesn't help anybody. You save a little tax money now, only to make our communities worse (and more expensive) later.

hayduke2

👍👍

mamlukman

"Yes, we are feeding dependency and in the process increasing the hunger problem... Yes, we should help the hungry but not increase the problem." OK, let me see if I've got this straight: 1) There are children who are hungry. 2) Giving them food "increases dependency." 3) Giving them food "increases the problem." Aren't children dependent by definition? Or is the writer suggesting that "some children" are taking advantage of the program and getting a free lunch they don't "deserve"? Perhaps we should set up a huge bureaucracy to separate the truly poor from the freeloaders? Of course the cost of doing that would be many, many times greater than handing out an undeserved hamburger. But hey, it's the principal, right? And when Christ told an admiring follower to "Go, sell all you have and give to the poor," he was kidding, right? Just a bad joke.

sevenstones1000

Yes, let’s let children go hungry. Let’s let them go homeless, too. Maybe soon we can look like India, where people are born, live and die in the gutters. That will teach those darned children to be poor.

public-redux

It will teach them (and those watching) to choose their parents better next time for sure.

Dwasserba

Yes. Don't you just hate it when people are poor and fat.

public-redux

Well, “hate” is such an unpleasant term. I prefer “unmaximized satisfaction”.

gabrielshorn2013

Do we really have that level of poverty in this country seven? No. Nor will we. Kind of a slippery slope argument.

threecents

I think you would be surprised how many homeless kids there are in Frederick, which is a very wealthy county.

gabrielshorn2013

That was not the question three. Seven stated that we would be like India, and my belief is that we will not be. I have seen the poverty of India, Brazil, and Nigeria, and it is not even close. Homeless in Frederick pales in comparison to the poverty in the favelas of São Paulo or Rio de Janiero.

gary4books

It is a spending program. To evaluate it we have to ask two questions (perhaps many more) and say "What will this accomplish?" and "What will happen if we do not do this?" Children without nourishment are likely to be poor students and even to not finish schools. Our future calls for an educated population that can learn new technologies and earns their way. I say "Feed the children." It is worth it.

saogirl52

[thumbup]

DickD

Gary, we give them food stamps, what are they using them for?

sevenstones1000

Dick D, have you ever lived on food Stamps? Have you ever tried to feed a family in food stamps? Do you know what amount of food stamps a family gets? No? What a surprise.

DickD

And you think people have no responsibility to feed their own or at least a part? This is what gives Democrats a bad name. You can give someone a fish and feed them for a day, or you can teach them how to fish and they will have food for life.

gabrielshorn2013

Dick, very much agreed that everyone needs to be responsible for themselves and theirs. Food stamps do not buy a lot, and if not carefully used, will run out before the end of the month. The recipients must also have access to, and the ability to store and use, bulk purchases, then divide them up. Everyone, not just food stamp recipients, must be required to take classes in school in Home Ec. that includes finances. Nutritious and tasty meals can be prepared very inexpensively, at less than $1-2 per serving. The key is having that knowledge. The dish I mentioned below fed our family for 2+ days, and cost about $10.

MD1756

Food stamps were never meant to be the sole source of revenue for a family for their food.

gary4books

The last I heard from President Reagan was "Cadillacs." But that was a while ago. Mostly the parents make these decisions.

saogirl52

We working taxpayers pay for many useful and needed programs. I'm ok with paying taxes for programs helping hungry kids get meals in their bellies. Spending over $100 million in our tax $$ so Trump can play golf...not so much. Paying more taxes so the very rich folks can pay less taxes? Again, not so much. Trump is a master at convincing the masses that the less fortunate among us are the reason the government's debt is skyrocketing while completely masking the fact that the rich, who do not pay their fair share, keep getting richer thanks to him.

DickD

Why don't we just have a large cafeteria where anyone can come and eat. This whole idea escapes me. We have food stamps, we have welfare, schools act as baby sitters. What else do we need.

llrowse

Jesus said the poor will always be with us. Let’s ignore this, and starve kids. I mean, these kids are totally responsible for their situation, right?

TheBackburner

Yea! Why don't these children born into poor families get jobs to buy their own food!? /s

DickD

We give them food stamps and they are starving? How much do you have to give people?

Dwasserba

You can't control what your parents buy or who eats it. Adoptive parents must pass muster with a social worker to be a parent. Everyone would not. Parenting another's child is a privelege, parenting your own is a right, there's the rub. No skills, no experience, no inclination - no problem! I actually think it would be a good idea to be certified to be cleared to parent. But if this had always been true, many great novels would have lacked inspiration.

gabrielshorn2013

Dick, I have relatives who hit some hard times and used food stamps, and I know it can be difficult if you can't buy in bulk to save money. It's also a matter of education and home economics. There are many nutritious meals that can be served in generous portions for less than $2 a person. Examples: red beans and rice with andouille sausage. It takes 10 minutes of preparation, and a $15 Crockpot. Pre-prepared meals are not economical, and must be avoided.

hayduke2

Dick- I hope these posts are just because you are having a bad day. You sound bitter

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