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Hullabaloo


Friday, September 20, 2013

 
Suffer the little children

by David Atkins


The next time someone talks about how food stamps create a "culture of dependency", remind them almost half of the people on SNAP, otherwise known as the food stamp program, are children. And nearly half of those kids belong to parents who have jobs, but are in poverty anyway.



SNAP provides families with an estimated 22 million children with resources to purchase a nutritionally adequate diet. This represents close to 1 in 3 children (29 percent) in the United States. Almost half of all SNAP recipients are children (47 percent), and an additional 26 percent are adults living with children. (See Figure 1.) Forty percent of all SNAP recipients live in households with preschool-age children (ages 4 and below).
Over 70 percent of SNAP benefits go to households with children. In 2011, SNAP provided an estimated $51 billion in benefits to families with children, over half of which went to families with preschool-age children.

SNAP families are low-income. A typical family with children that is enrolled in SNAP has income (not including SNAP) at 57 percent of the poverty line. For a family of three, 57 percent of the poverty line corresponds with an annual income of $10,785 in 2012. A typical family with children on SNAP spends close to three-quarters of its income on housing and/or child care costs. Families with children currently receive an average of $420 a month in SNAP benefits, or about $5,000 a year.
SNAP benefits help working families support their children. Nearly half (48 percent) of children who receive SNAP live in low-wage working families. A typical working household with children receives an average of $400 a month in SNAP benefits, representing about 30 percent of the family’s average income.
This is not a rational disagreement about public policy. This is a gulf of basic decency, a demand by fearful people for the sacrifice of innocents to sate a perversely sadistic form of cosmic justice.

Interestingly, most people demanding the starvation of children so that billionaires can buy more yachts call themselves Christian. Perhaps they're reading a Biblical translation that calls for blood sacrifice of innocents so that the rich may enjoy more fruits of Mammon. I missed that part in my copy.

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