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Letters to the Editor

November 16, 2013

Don't punish needy for mistakes of a few

I am writing to bring up a current issue concerning a certain bill that is still simmering in the government: the Farm Bill. In June of 2013, the Farm Bill was passed, but without the proposed funding cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, as it is commonly known. 

However, Republicans were back at it again as of Sept. 18. Republican Marlin Stutzman of Indiana states, “The bill eliminates loopholes, ensures work requirements, and puts us on a fiscally responsible path.” 

Most recently, the “fair and balanced” FOX News shone the spotlight on Jason Greenslate, a San Diego “surfer dude” who appeared to be abusing the food stamp program. Now, I absolutely abhor anyone who abuses the system. It makes people who need assistance look bad. However, FOX News alleged that the SNAP program is full of Jason Greenslates. This statement is inaccurate. According to feedingamerica.com, 76 percent of households receiving food stamps include “children, the elderly, and disabled individuals.” In addition, data at cbpp.org show that 91 percent of benefits go to families living at or below the line of poverty.

As of Oct. 28, the food stamps cuts have been proposed to be larger and have a huge difference in what the Senate and the House approves. The Senate approved cuts valued at $4 billion, whereas the House approves cuts valued at $39 billion. If these cuts pass, 4 million people, who most likely don’t scam the system, will be left famished. Children will be left famished. I must ask: Is it fair to put millions of people in suffering because of the greed of certain citizens and right-wing ignorance? 

Millions of people need help eating. Don’t take that help away from them.

Stephen Banks

Delhi

Banks is a senior at Franklin Central School and is writing this letter for Stephen DeCarlo’s social studies class.

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