Rosenblum: Small changes can mean big struggles for the hungry

  • Article by: GAIL ROSENBLUM , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 7, 2013 - 6:22 PM

A family’s food assistance gets cut by $36 a month. A Sara Lee/Taystee bread outlet closes in New Brighton. A hairstylist’s client comes every six weeks instead of every four.

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ohanlonDec. 7, 13 9:39 PM

If you do the math, the total amount of the SNAP program divided by total US population results in a figure of .67 cents per person, per day. By contrast, $5.93 is the amount spent daily per person on defense. We can afford to pay ten times what we pay for SNAP on the military, but are cutting the amount spent on feeding the needy? Really? Here's an idea, we completely scrap the F-35 program, take all that money, and spend it on some things that we actually need like job training of people in poverty, medical care for our veterans suffering with poor care in outdated facilities and a medical system that treats the citizens of our country without a basis in profit. Just a weird thought I guess, or we can continue to spend money like water on newer and better ways to kill people. As if the methods we currently have are totally inadequate to that task. We currently have three times as many aircraft as the next biggest air force, China. Ten times as many as North Korea. I'm all for strong defense, and support our military, but spending on new programs of high tech weapons instead of what actually makes our country strong is foolish. What good is having a secure border if our citizens are bereft of the necessities to make a stable and constructive life?

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lorentjdDec. 8, 13 7:46 AM

This sentence is a distortion of reality: "As you read this, 48 million Americans using SNAP are reeling from recent cuts, which left them scrambling to put food on the table with an average of $1.40 a meal." SNAP is the "SUPPLEMENTAL Nutrition Assistance Program" (it "supplements" a family's available cash for food)...it does not mean the "SOLE Nutrition Assistance Program" (such that, for 48 million people, SNAP and $1.48 per meal is the ONLY money they have for food). Undoubtedly, there are some people for whom SNAP is the only money they have for food. But, to characterize that as being the case for 48 million people is a gross distortion.

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dentesterDec. 8, 13 9:29 AM

ohanlon: National defense is a requirement of this government under the Constitution. Giving you free food is not. If people can't adjust their spending by $1 a day, you can see why they're poor. But it's not our role to fix their lives for them.

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scott5534Dec. 9, 1312:22 PM

"Buying bread at $2 a loaf, instead of $4, “was well worth” the drive from St. Paul, she said." Brilliant. When it just cost you $6 in gas for the drive. People are not going hungry! Most need to eat less. The idea that people are going to bed hungry is a fairy tale.

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delusiondogDec. 9, 13 1:01 PM

On a brighter note at least we're going to build Ziggyland!

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3docksDec. 11, 13 7:18 AM

There is a stunning lack of empathy in some of the previous comments.

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lordhawhaw1Dec. 11, 13 4:35 PM

SNAP spending has gone from 33 million in 2007 to almost 80 million this year. In the same time frame the SNAP benefit per person has jumped from $98 per month to $133 per month. By the way a loaf of fresh whole wheat bread at Walmart that has 12% of your daily dietary fiber per slice can be had for $1.58.

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