This from USA Today, today:
“Food stamp benefits to 47 million Americans were cut starting Friday as a temporary boost to the federal program comes to an end without new funding from a deadlocked Congress.
Under the program, known formally as the Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program, or SNAP, a family of four that gets $668 per month in benefits will find that amount cut by $36.
“It may not sound like a lot but to a person like me, it is,” says Annie Crisp, 30, a single mother of two girls in Lancaster, Ohio. “It’s not just a number.”
She says she received a little less than $550 a month in food stamps and now will receive $497. Crisp, a babysitter who brings home about $830 a month, says the food stamps help her buy her family fresh fruits, vegetables and meat.”
Let me get this straight . . . a single mom, with two girls, can’t survive on $497 a month worth of groceries?
Once again, I am forced to do the simple math exercise (remember, I went to school before Common Core).
30 days x 3 meals a day x 3 people = 270 meals a month. The two girls get “free” breakfast and lunch (actually paid by taxpayers) at their government school. There are 19 school days in November, so subtract 76 meals. That leaves 194 meals at home per month for the taxpayers to buy. $497 divided by 194 meals = $2.56 per meal.
Now if you eat most of your meals at Olive Garden, that doesn’t sound like a lot. But who eats 194 meals a month at a restaurant? These are two schoolgirls and a single mom who can pack a lunch when she babysits (I’m guessing Annie scores a few free meals while babysitting.)
My family can afford to eat anything we want. Like most Americans, we eat too much, and our profiles reflect it. Here are some typical menus at our house (my wife helped me calculate the per meal costs):
Typical breakfast: yogurt, OJ, cereal, milk = $1.50 per meal. Or 2 eggs, toast, OJ, banana, milk = $.90 per meal.
Typical lunch: ham sandwich, fruit, cookies, iced tea = $1.90 per meal. Or tuna salad w/dressing, crackers, cheese and boiled egg, iced tea = $1.95 per meal.
Typical dinner: our favorite beef goulash, with veggies, drinks and brownies for dessert = $1.58 per meal. Or pork chops, baked potato, veggies, and ice cream = $1.50 per meal.
An average meal costs my family $1.56 for each of us. We don’t consider this a “subsistence” diet at all; in fact, we really need to cut back.
Now, back to the simple math. If the Annie Crisp family ate meals like us, they would have about $194 a month left over from the taxpayers. They could easily go out to Olive Garden once a week, or eat steaks at home twice a week, or enjoy 50 items each from the dollar menu at McDonald’s and still have money to spare.
Am I missing something here?
I am not a grinch. I don’t want kids to starve, and I understand there are families in trouble through no fault of their own. But it gets harder every day to stand in line behind the 350 lb. mama in the Wal-Mart checkout line, whipping out her EBT card to pay for basket loads of junk food. And never – ever – ever saying “Thank You.”
Tom Balek – Rockin’ On the Right Side
I was travellin’ down the road feelin’ hungry and cold,
I saw a sign sayin’ food and drinks for everyone,
So naturally I thought I would take me a look inside.
I saw so much food, there was water coming from my eyes!