Hateful Letter To Food Bank Proves We Need Food Stamps

by Wendy Gittleson –

A few days before Thanksgiving, a food bank in Central Texas received a letter that was so hateful it could only have been written by a Trump supporter.

Dear Foodbank:

I don’t understand who these poor folks are that need food. I assume they consist primarily of illegals, who come to Texas for “free stuff.” And of course, our unemployed Africans, who find work too much trouble, especially when they can collect the equivalent of $40,000 a year on welfare, and other “benefits” offered to the unfit, the lazy, and the under-educated…and of course, the drug addicts.

I expect that most who need food are marching around whining that the congenital liar, Hillary Rodham Clinton, lost the election. Too bad; How sad.

I also wonder if your organization is not one of those Phoney-Baloney, so-called “charities,” designed primarily to provide a good living to its organizers.

In short, no way.

Signed,

Citizen Robespierre

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Naturally, the food bank was mortified.

“The lack of empathy was disturbing,” says Paul Gaither, marketing and communications director for the Food Bank. “Most of the letters we receive say things like ‘we don’t have anything to contribute’ or ‘please take me off your list,’ but this one was a little different.”

“It’s important that we don’t categorize the people we serve as ‘takers’” Gaither said. “Most of the people we serve have fallen on hard times or are the working poor who just can’t make ends meet, and that can happen to anyone.”

Source: GivingCityAustin

Before I tackle how this proves we need food stamps, let’s talk about the misconceptions in the surprisingly literate letter. First off, food should never be treated as a luxury. You can absolutely not call yourself pro-life while at the same time advocating that people should starve. Of the 37 million people who are fed every year by food banks, 14 million of them are children and 3 million are seniors.

As for undocumented immigrants, well, they aren’t crossing the border to eat at food banks. They are crossing the border, for the most part, to work and that’s what they do. Collectively, undocumented immigrants contribute almost $12 billion each year to our country because they pay taxes and get nothing in return. We should be thanking them instead of sending hateful notes about them.

It’s not just unemployed people who need food banks, so do people who work minimum wage jobs. Texas happens to be among the states with the very lowest wages. Only Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi have lower wages. In other words, in states like Texas, laziness has nothing to do with the ability to put food on the table.

Now, back to the food stamps argument. One Republican argument has always been that if the government stops offering a social safety net, private charities will pick up the slack. While that sounds like a beautiful idea (sort of), it’s simply not true. People’s ability to eat should not depend on the whims of people, nor should it depend on the economy or whether a charity can effectively market itself. We tried that in the past. It didn’t work.

Instead, that time in history proved that privately funded charities can be both bigoted and very selective in who they cover. If you can imagine the writer of this letter, for example, giving to any charity, do you honestly think (s)he’d give to a charity that serviced minority areas? No. That’s where government comes in. Making sure Americans have enough food is our moral prerogative. Relying on bigots like Citizen Robespierre should be out of the question, no matter who is hungry.

As for the Central Texas Food Bank, well, they are a damn good charity. They score 100 out of 100 on Charity Navigator. The vast majority of the people they serve are not homeless. 1/3 of the recipients are white.

 

Reprinted with permission from Addicting Info