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Social Problems: Philadelphia Suburb (Chester Township) Threatens To Fine Charitable Woman

Updated on September 5, 2012
Angela Prattis
Angela Prattis | Source

It has finally happened! The inmates are running the asylum in a small town in Pennsylvania. What’s next, pigs flying? Hell freezing over? Politicians voting their conscience?

This writer has seen some bizarre events during his lifetime, but with each event there was always an explanation that at the very least seemed reasonable. I mean, there are two sides to every issue, right? No matter how misguided one side might be, at the very least you can see some logic for the decision or actions.

However, the city council of Chester Township, has managed to render this writer speechless.

SETTING THE SCENE

All this summer long, Angela Prattis, a resident of Chester Township, has been distributing free lunches to neighborhood children. The food has been provided by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in an attempt to help low-income residents, and Ms. Prattis has been the distribution system.

As she explains, the residents of this township have a per capita income of $19,000 per year, and living conditions are horrible. “You have houses here, the roofs are falling in,” Prattis said, “and I wanted to make sure the neighborhood kids received at least one healthy meal a day during the summer.”

Prattis, it should be noted, does not get paid for this act of kindness. She is simply a good Samaritan doing what good Samaritans do, reaching out to help those who need a helping hand.

Chester Township
Chester Township | Source

AND IN THIS CORNER

The city council of Chester Township, when “alerted” of this horrible deed, contacted Prattis and told her that she was handing out meals in a residential area and that it is a zoning violation. They also told her that if she continues to give away food next summer that she will be fined $600 per day.

But the story gets better! The city council told Prattis that she needed a variance in order to give away the free food, and that variance will cost her $1,000 in administrative fees.

In a magnanimous gesture, the city council has agreed to allow Prattis to continue her benevolent actions this summer, but next summer the fines will be levied if she chooses to continue with these obviously reprehensible actions.

It should be noted that Prattis is visited by a state worker biweekly to ensure that she is doing what she says she is doing. In other words, the state of Pennsylvania sees nothing wrong with charitable works, but Chester Township sees quite a bit wrong with such acts.

CAN YOU GUESS WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE?

It is noteworthy that this drama is being played out miles from where Thomas Paine wrote his landmark essay, “Common Sense,” in 1776. In this work, Paine riled against the evils of an unjust government. That same year, also in Philadelphia, the Colonies issued the Declaration of Independence, stating that any government that does not have the good of the people at heart, should be removed.

236 years later the message seems to have been lost on the road from Philadelphia to Chester Township.

Can you imagine where this country would be if this kind of myopic thinking would have occurred during the Great Depression? But wait! It never could have happened in 1933 because President Roosevelt understood the value of helping one another. He understood the role of government. He understood that a nation is only as strong as its weakest link.

If someone knows of a valid reason for this travesty of government, let them come forth now! If someone knows of a valid reason why governments such as Chester Township feel the need to micro-manage the very life out of its residents, let them come forth now!

During a time of increased isolation in this country, acts like those of Angela Prattis should be applauded. They should be held up as examples of community action so that others might learn and emulate. They should be broadcast on every national media as feel-good stories so that a nation that is limping from economic hardships can have some positive light to follow.

Instead what we find is a small group of bureaucrats, so set in their ways and blinded by their positions, unable to do the right thing. They see black and white while all around them colors beg to be noticed. They hold their fingers down on the applicable statute and bask in their self-righteousness, all the while lacking an understanding of the basic tenants of law.

WE CAN ONLY HOPE

We can only hope that one day, somewhere in this country, reason will once again rule the land. We can only hope that one day, somewhere in this country, someone will stand up and say ENOUGH! We can only hope that one day, somewhere in this country, a disciple of Thomas Paine will ride forth and be the voice of reason and conscience for this once great Land.

For those of you who think this is too insignificant for you to bother with, I say shame on you! When acts of charity are regulated and shut down, it is not insignificant. When benevolence is overruled by statute it is not insignificant. When life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are pushed aside by bureaucratic ineptitude it is not insignificant.

Kindness is never insignificant! Kindness is never outdated. Kindness should never be regulated!

2012 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

How Do You Feel About It?

Do you agree with the ruling by Chester Township?

See results

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    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Yes, Rachel, I am convinced that the worst is yet to come regarding this economy and society in general....so I surround myself with good people and hope for the best.

    • Farmer Rachel profile image

      Rachel Koski 4 years ago from Minnesota

      Well, in one way I guess I'm "glad" to hear that it's not just SE PA that's lost its mind; on the other hand, you're right - how on earth did we survive the Depression, and how will we survive what's next with this societal cannibalism? Anyway, I'm a good person, you're a good person, there are still good people out there :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rachel, very interesting and thank you for that comment. Yes, something is happening, but it's not just around Philly. Human beings in this country have forgotten decency and compassion. Greed and ego have stepped to the forefront and it is disgusting to see. How could this country have survived the Great Depression with the attitude you see today in this country? I am not optimistic about humanity as a whole right now!

    • Farmer Rachel profile image

      Rachel Koski 4 years ago from Minnesota

      I live in Delaware County just miles from Chester and Philly. I can tell you from personal experience that this is the most insane place in the country. Around one corner you have extreme wealth and opulence; up the next street you find abject poverty. At the farm where I work, we donated 300 pounds of organic potatoes to a large, local food charity last year, and you wouldn't believe how little attention this got. In fact, I had a woman tell me that I should have sold the potatoes. I was so offended I didn't even know how to respond. It cost us next to nothing to raise that crop, and we are right next door to the SECOND HUNGRIEST CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT IN THE NATION. I tell you Bill (and everyone else) something has happened around Philly - everyone is completely insane and have absolutely forgotten what being a real person is supposed to be. Disgusting.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Elena, I like your solution very much! You are so very correct about kindness!

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 4 years ago from London, UK

      So ridiculous to be fined for doing good. She is doing what the government should be doing. I would find a very good Lawyer, sue them and use the money to even distribute to more zones.

      Kindness should never be regulated.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sgbrown, I agree completely! This is lunacy at its worst and hopefully the negative publicity will change the laws. Thank you for weighing in.

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 5 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      I had heard of this ridiculous law and was appauled by it. This woman is a good person, doing what she can to help the children in her community. I'm sure others (not politicians) applaud her. Maybe with all the attention that has spread on this matter, the law will change. These people are thinking with their wallets, not their hearts! Voted up and awesome!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Carly, this kind of crap just pisses me off....and the older I get the more pissed off I become. This is inexcusable and should not be ignored by anyone who calls themselves a United States citizen.

      Anyway, putting away my soapbox, thank you dear!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Theresa....I know that you get it.....now, onward to the other six hundred million in this country. Thank you my friend.

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

      "When acts of charity are regulated and shut down, it is not insigni -ficant. When benevolence is overruled by statute it is not insignificant. When life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are pushed aside by bureaucratic ineptitude it is not insignificant."

      "Kindness is never insignificant! Kindness is never outdated. Kindness should never be regulated!" Amen and Amen and Amen!!!

    • CarlySullens profile image

      CarlySullens 5 years ago from St. Louis, Missouri

      Here is another example of you, alerting the rest of us the injustice and insane decisions that effects those who are not as privileged. And you are absolutely correct when we you mentioned we are as strong as our weakest link. But these are children, hungry children, who do not get fed in the summer because they are not in schools.

      Sadly, it happens to children all across America. I just don't get it, why people get so hung up on the 'rules' and forget that real people are involved. Not only that, they are children who just want to eat. If we do not feed them, who will? Where will they turn? And so the cycle continues.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Suzie, I was as shocked as anyone, and I didn't think I could be shocked any longer. There is no explanation for this sort of myopic governmental interference. Sad indeed!

      Thank you dear lady; I hope you are having a wonderful weekend.

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Hi Bill, To say I was shocked and horrified would be an understatement upon reading your article! To think this generous spirited lady would be penalized for doing good for children, is quite absurd and worrying. I hope that Ms Prattis continues to do her great work with the offer of help from Senor Bolling.

      Another great expose piece Bill, you are the master for such writings!

      Thank you my friend for highlighting yet another travesty in our society that many would not have been aware of, if it were not for your passion.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Patty, thank you for stopping by. I had not heard about Bolling offering to pay, but I love it. This whole matter is going to blow up in their faces. I need to follow this to see what happens next.

      I love that your city has a free lunch program; that's a progressive city for sure, and I have no problem with the requirements. Obviously the state of Pennsylvania had no problem with Ms. Prattis and her work.

      Sigh! Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful Sunday.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, the whole thing is so absurd, that at first I thought it was a joke. Alas, no, just our government at work. I agree with you about over-regulating....again, absurd.

      Thank you my friend and have a great weekend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Joseph, I see that day coming, when the regular folk just say ENOUGH and rise up. It's happened before in this country and it can happen again. Apathy is our biggest enemy right now, but I think it is coming to a halt soon. Thank you my friend; I love having you in the trenches with me.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 5 years ago from North America

      My compliments to Ms Prattis! I read that Eric Bolling of the Fox Business Network will pay the $1,000 permit cost for Ms. Prattis next year in 2013. If the local govt continues to hassle her after that, we will be even more assured of bad politics and prejudice in this matter.

      In my city we have Free Lunch programs each summer for the kids, but the distributors of the food are required to meet Health Dept criteria similar to that of day care providers - mandatory separate restrooms for boys and girls, 3-section industrial sinks in the kitchen, etc. Individuals work out of many neighborhood churches and small rec centers to serve the food in order to avoid heavy fines.

      I hope the permit stops the commotion next summer. Thanks for the Hub; rated Up and more.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 5 years ago from New York

      I can't even think of what to say! These 'politicians' should be fined $1,000 a day for ignorance and depriving people of food!!!!

      I agree, Angela Prattis should run for mayor and show them how a real government with heart, is run.

      We are so over-regulating everything we are going to over-regulate ourselves right out of a country!

      Voted up, useful, and interesting. I did hit funny because it is ironically funny.

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 5 years ago

      Never forgot this hub Billy, just left it for the weekend. This is one of the reasons why we should not tolerate politics when is time to feed the poor. Yeah! They will get their paychecks from Harrisburg Pa, and the average citizen could rot in hell. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and one day...one day we will wake up. I don't say it! History told us. It's coming to a point where, we will be in arms... in order to feed our family.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Integrity, this situation baffles me. I will never understand the motives of some people. Thank you for taking the time to comment.

    • profile image

      IntegrityYes 5 years ago

      That article is so emotional.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, two days after I saw this story I'm still shaking my head. the response of the council members was classic bullshit. I'm hoping the media stirs up enough crap that they will have to back down, or else I hope this woman runs for mayor and then fires the city council. Wouldn't that be the ultimate in irony?

      Thank you my dear; I hope you have a wonderful weekend and come one step closer to freedom.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Are you serious????? The council won't allow acts of charity? What?? They absolutely should allow one person to do it in hopes of others taking the financial burden off her! I'm now ashamed that I lived much of my life in Philly, although up 'til now, I've veen proud. It was a great place to attend school. The field trips were amazing; there's so much history! I never was ashamed before reading this article, but after their response to you... Again, I say WTF? Are they serious? Are they that desperate for funding that the samaritans are being taxed? What really kills me is I went to Catholic school in the Archdiocese of Phliladelphia. The school I attended, St. Matthias, in Bala Cynwtyd, was the first Catholic school to challenge altar boys as only being boys. We challenged the school and they couldn't come up with a viable argument, so 2 girls in my class studied to become altar boys. It made history. The media was there. It was on TV. This had to have been in 1967-1969. We weren't quiet Catholics. We had questions and we weren't afraid to ask and challenge the Bible. I was one ot the most rebellious. Even back then, don't tell me to believe something "Cuz". Tell me why. Or leave me alone until I find out on my own!

      I'm ashamed of PA! Have they no other way to generate revenue than to tax those who are already taxed and giving freely to those in need? Really? You can't come up with a better campaign? You have to rely on those who expect nothing in return and make it dirty???

      Again I say, WTF??????

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Genna, it is as strange a story as I have read in a very long time. The council responded after I had written this story...they said that if they allowed one person to do it then many others would follow....heaven forbid they have many more helping with acts of charity.

      Thank you for the visit.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      A zoning violation? What on earth IS this zoning violation? I am flabbergasted, Billy, and saddened at the same time. “No good deed goes unpunished” is working overtime in this particular situation. Splendid hub, Billy. Up and more.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, I think I have finally met my match. That was oozing sarcasm from the second word on and you never let up for a second. Beautiful work there my friend! LOL Remind me never to get on your bad side; I may not recover from the verbal wounds. :)

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      bill....silly, generous and charitable citizen...please do not stand in the way of gov't doing what they do best. Please stand back and be still as they make one outrageous decision after another...while they clog up the workings of good deeds......understand that they must show their power, regardless of it's ignorance. They need to be in charge.....it's their civil duty.

      Woe to those who would attempt to have disdain for the a$$holes who lead.......for look at where they have brought us? Yes, I say, look around.

      Without gov't screwing up every last thing they touch.....None of us would even have to think about being helpful or charitable.........I mean, this just makes sense, doesn't it? Well, doesn't it????? UP+++

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michele, especially in a town like this with only 4000 residents, it would take very little effort to shove these people out of office. One concerted effort by voters and these people would be gone along with their myopic view of the world.

      Thank you!

    • Michele Travis profile image

      Michele Travis 5 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

      This has left me almost speechless. I agree with ib radmasters. People need to vote! Vote out the city council. They are awful. Voting proves they are awful. Voters have power. One vote has power! Ever vote has power. That is why we need to vote!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      ib radmasters, your words are true! I have the feeling the city council of this town are hearing from quite a few people right now. Thanks for your input.

    • ib radmasters profile image

      ib radmasters 5 years ago from Southern California

      Like all the problems of the government, the problem lies with the people. The people vote in the politicians to represent them in government, federal, state and local.

      The voters can right this situation and many other problems of a bad government by voting out the people that make it a bad government.

      So the bottom line is why aren't the people voicing their opinion, followed by their votes on the city council?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, I think the last three initials that you typed perfectly express my thoughts on the matter. :) Thanks buddy!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Alecia, thank you, and I completely agree. When charities are micro-managed by the government on any level then we have lost sight of the purpose.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I've never heard anything more absurd in my life! Taxing someone for giving of her time and food to the underprivileged? I just can't even get the words out. What a travesty! WTF??????

    • Alecia Murphy profile image

      Alecia Murphy 5 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      Charity is one of the last things that should be legislated or regulated- and the fact that this woman is doing something so noble and being penalized for it- is plain ridiculous. Again red tape and bureaucracy has prevented us from appreciating the good in others. I hope people rally together so this woman or anyone won't be deterred from doing good for others. Excellent hub!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michele, I hope more people will take the time to email this council and tell them what idiots they are. Thank you my friend; you are appreciated.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Sam!

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 5 years ago from Singapore

      All is the annoying Red Tape. Because charity does not fit in the system, it is eliminated and no provisions are made. Everything is for "the greater good." Their reason would be if everyone was allowed to give free lunches, they cannot have everything within their 'control'. I get pretty peeved when something like that happens too, and their is a serious miscarriage of justice. Thanks for sharing this, and I do hope that more people will be a voice against this injustice.

    • profile image

      Sam 5 years ago

      Tell the council what you think. http://www.chestercity.com/index.php/city-council

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dolores, thank you! It is not my job to question what the homeless do with the money I give them, and I do give them money. The state of this nation sickens me.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Patty, thanks for the share! To answer your question, I don't know what is wrong with people. I am literally speechless when I hear of things like this.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rich, my experience with poor districts, is that they get so bitter over poverty that they can't think of anything else...it infects their entire life.....this kind of crap drives me nuts, and you are right, it is insanity.

      Thank you my friend; have a great weekend!

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 5 years ago from East Coast, United States

      It is a sad state of affairs when you can't give food away to poor children. But that's the way many in society feel today. Walking around town one day, I gave some money to a raggedy, obvious poor man. My young friend gave me a hard time and said that I should give my money to a charity instead. That the guy was probably a drunk or a drug addict.

      Of course, if I gave the money to an actual charity, they'd take out a percentage for administrative costs. It would take months for the value to filter down to the homeless person on the street. I asked my friend, what would Jesus do? Junkies have to eat too.

    • Patty Kenyon profile image

      Patty Kenyon 5 years ago from Ledyard, Connecticut

      WHAT!?!?! What is wrong with people if they want to fine a person like Angela who is doing her best to help out others when soooo many need help!!!

      Perhaps one of the wealthy politician would be kind enough to pay for any type of permit Angela needs so that she can continue helping those in need.

      Errr, I wonder if the same town fine no do gooders too!

      Lots of Votes and Shared!!!

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 5 years ago from Kentucky

      Bill =

      From my understanding (I saw this in the news not too long ago) it was the neighbors complaints that created the city to step in. There were complaints of excessive food odors, excessive numbers of unaccompanied children, and noise by these kids that got the neighbors upset. I guess they were afraid they'd be robbed by a 7 year old with a plastic fork!

      STOP THE INSANITY!

      Sorry, had to get that out! Later, my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Josh, I was pretty sure you would weigh in on this one being from PA....there are little injustices happening in practically every town, and unless people speak out against them they just go unnoticed and uncared about. I guess I'm that voice that can't stay quiet.

      Thanks nephew!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      B. Leekley, I agree with everything you said....there are ways to shut down these kinds of actions and they are effective. I almost mentioned Jesus' feeding of the multitudes...I'm sure a few laws were broken then, too.

      I think another hub needs to be written; I'm feeling the fire on this one.

      Thank you my friend; greatly appreciated.

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Bill,

      This is yet again just another example of the sad direction our country is heading towards. It is such a shame, especially seeing where our founding fathers first started this country. We were founded on firm virtues of the faith and morals. Would this of happened back then? If this injustice did happen, how would it of been treated? A very different country we are today. I mean don't get me wrong, I am glad we live in a free state! We have a lot to be thankful, and I am indeed truly grateful. But still, there is stuff that goes on behind the scenes that is wrong, dead wrong!

      Thanks for sharing this news, I am a PA resident and had no idea this had happened.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      farmloft, I'm sure there is some nonsensical reason why she was turned in, and then the local government booted it completely. Sad but it happens often I'm sure.

      Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      BJC, thank you for the visit; I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment and, like you, I am speechless.

    • BJC profile image

      BJC 5 years ago from Florida

      This really takes the cake..... and leaves me speechless! Although, I do agree with B. Leekly and farmloft and your comments!

    • farmloft profile image

      farmloft 5 years ago from Michigan

      My bet would be that someone in her neighborhood complained about her charity - either because of traffic or noisy children or jealousy because they couldn't run a business out of their home so why can she run a charity? Give her a variance and make it cheaper so she can afford it. Government regulations are not, I repeat not, supposed to be so rigid and narrow as to overcome common sense.

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 5 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Jesus had strong words about people who are extremists about the letter of the law and don't have a clue about its spirit. Bureaucrats without common sense show up everywhere. There was a case recently in AZ of small town cops closing down two junior high girls' lemonade stand, to raise money for some good and innocent cause, because they didn't have the $60 per day vendor's license (or something like that -- I'm going by memory). Some years back in a town in IL the then Mayor sent enforcers up and down the streets to make certain that no lawn grass was more than 1 inch high. The answer is not for someone someday to use their super powers to defeat the curse of the rules are rules bureuacrats. I think rather the answer is in your hub, Billybuc, on what makes great neighborhoods. The counter to lack of sense is individuals taking the initiative in the cause of good, common sense. That might mean a petition. (I learned about the AZ case from an online petition.) That might mean doing some political and community organizing on the side of common sense. That might mean bringing dozens of hungry children to a town council meeting. That might mean local leaders with less rigid minds coming up with a compromise solution that makes sense to everyone. Taking the initiative against both too rigid and too lax regulation in one's community or neighborhood is a shared among us all responsibility. Anyway, UP, Useful, Interesting, and shared.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you as always Rajan; I simply do not understand this kind of thinking.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Theophanes, I totally agree with you; a protest of that sort would be unstoppable. How big can the police force of a 4,000 person town be? Most of the town is poor, so just get everyone out there enmasse and demonstrate with tv stations filming. News at eleven!

      Thank you for a great addition to the discussion.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      I never knew charity could be so reprehensible as to warrant a fine, maybe certain quarters feel doing the act of goodness has a price tag. Really these guys need to learn what it is to be human.

      Great you brought this to the fore.

      Sharing it on G+1, Bill.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lyric, it may, indeed, be time for a hub on Chester Township. Thanks for the suggestion. I don't know if it will do any good, but I do no it won't do any harm, so it's worth it.

      Thank you my friend; great comment.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      gmaoli, it is unspeakable greed and idiocy, and more voices need to rise up against it. I'm only one voice....you are only one.....I want people angry enough that they will speak up for those who have no voice.

      Thank you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martin, I have no doubt that's because they don't want to risk a lawsuit or some such nonsense. I'm telling you my friend, the inmates are running the whole show.

      Thanks Martin!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Maggs, wouldn't that be classic irony....to get her elected as mayor? I'm laughing at the thought of it.

      I am deeply disturbed by the occurrence of more and more stories like this. I literally have no words for this kind of lunacy.

      Thank you my friend!

    • Theophanes profile image

      Theophanes 5 years ago from New England

      Well it is already illegal to feed homeless people in several cities unless you have a restaurant license for your soup kitchen or some crazy nonsense like that. Wow, I actually re-found the article (http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/feedin... In any event Philly was one of the first cities to do that.

      The thing is our politicians are pretty much all rich and have lost their empathy for mankind. They are looking at poor people like the royals of centuries past must have looked at peasants - use them for their labor and tax the shit out of them and hope they kill each other off because ewe, poor people, who needs those around? To make matters worse they have made it pretty much impossible for 'the common man' to actually run for any office of importance. No money and your campaign will be killed on site if you even get that far. I hear they've purposely made the paperwork for such things so goddamn crazy that only people who are already in office know how to fill them out anyway. Such a nice exclusive club they got going...

      In any event I think Ms Prattis should show up next summer in mass with a bunch of other volunteers, food in hand, surrounded by hungry children. Call the press. Let them take pictures and record what the kids are saying. No one will have the balls to do anything with her if she's got the whole city on her side.

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      Richard Ricky Hale 5 years ago from West Virginia

      I can't believe this! This is total BS. Truth be told, they should be ashamed! $1,000 to pass out some free food. I would hate to see the charge for bought food, probably over $10,000. I truly hate this. At one time, I was homeless and a meal was worth more then any money or clothing I could get. With low wages and the economy, they are robbing people of food. That is not America. So so sad to read a story like this. I think it is time for a hub on Chester Township Bill, one of those where you tell them where to go:) LOL More then anything, it is sad. Makes me wonder if the Salvation Army is aloud to ring bells there. Another great hub Mr. Bill!

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      Gianandrea Maoli 5 years ago from South Carolina

      With all the stories I write about charity work, it's a good think I don't live in this town. I'd be broke in a week! This is just government greed at it's finest with the people at the top being on a power trip. Really, 1K to help feed kids who come from families that are lucky to see that kind of money in a month? I appreciate you bringing this to light, Bill. I think Thomas Paine would be shaking your hand right now.

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      Martin Kloess 5 years ago from San Francisco

      A similar story in SF. There are these large dinners (200 plus). After the events there are large portions of untouched food, which (according to ordinance) should be thrown out. There is a lady who "steals" it for an unnamed charity

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      maggs224 5 years ago from Sunny Spain

      It seems like those who should be working for the good of the people have instead completely lost the plot.

      Political correctness and fear have indeed taken over, and the very things that once defined and made America great, are being steadily outlawed one statute at a time, shame on you city council of Chester Township shame :(

      It is a good job there are still some people around who are watching and are not afraid to speak out when they see such lunacy well done Bill :D

      Voting Up and if I had the power I would vote off that city council of Chester Township and make Angela Prattis the new mayor.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, thanks! I'll put it on the hub!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Tammy....it's a head-shaker for sure.....I was reading a quote from one of the councilmen...he said if they allowed one person to do it then they would have to allow everyone....how do you argue with that kind of logic?

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      Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

      This is infuriating! What is worse is that we all elect the people into office that make these decisions. Seems the state is out of touch and doesn't consider the needs of the people. This nation is really crumbling. :( Great expository piece Billybuc.

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      Old Poolman 5 years ago

      Not sure anyone would be interested, but here is a link to their website that just happens to include their phone number and address. Think I might just give them a call tomorrow.

      http://www.chestercity.com/index.php/city-council

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Janine, I have serious concerns about the lunacy that is all around us. It appears that more and more people are just plain lost, with no direction or common sense....like a bunch of sheep wandering aimlessly. It saddens me and that's why I write about this stuff.

      Thank you my dear friend, for being the person that you are.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Glimmer, I was reading a quote from one of the city council; they said they were all for charitable acts, just not in their town....that if they let one person do it they would have to let others.....OMG!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Interesting Mark; I'll have to look into it. I can't find an email address for the city council; if I do I'll put it on the hub. This kind of stuff drives me crazy!

      Thank you my warrior brother!

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      Mark G Weller 5 years ago from Lake Charles, LA.

      Although this does not surprise me, I find it absurd. This is one more example of government gone crazy. I wonder if Angela Prattis is aware of Signon.org She could create a petition and Moveon.org would send it out to the database and collect signatures which could be a big influence to those teeny men (people) on the council.

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      Glimmer Twin Fan 5 years ago

      I love it (not) when city governments think of yet another way to earn money through the guise of protecting people. I'm surprised that church bake sales and local food banks aren't getting written up too.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nell, I have no doubt it happens in England as well...and I love your line about cutting back on Social money...I know for a fact they would do that here.

      Thank you my friend!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jenn, thanks for writing....I needed the perspective of someone who lives nearby! I simply don't understand this sort of thing, but I'll bet I could organize a recall committee pretty fast if I lived there. Thanks for the input.

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      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      Ok Bill, it never ceases to amaze the bureacratic hypocrisy that seems to take place everyday in this great country of ours. Thank you for bringing this story to the forefront for we need to know and be educated as to what injustices are currently occurring. As a mother of 2 small children, I am appalled at what the city council of Chester Township has threatened to do to Angela Prattis for just trying to help these children who are truly less fortunate and doing essentially a good deed. How ironic too that this is occurring a stone's throw away from where Thomas Paine did indeed write "Common Sense." Seriously thank you again for writing about this and bringing putting it out there for all to know. Have shared, voted up and tweeted too!!

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      Jenn-Anne 5 years ago

      There are a lot of beaurocratic nightmares going on these days - like punishing kids for taking nail clippers or an aspirin tablet to school. Laws applied without any common sense are becoming the norm. I'm from the Philadelphia area. Chester has always been in need of as many good samaritans as possible and can't afford to alienate any of them. Great hub, as always!

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      Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

      Hi billy, I am speechless! I just get so mad when this sort of injustice happens, mind you it doesn't surprise me, it seems that the so called 'powers that be' make this stuff up just to pee people off! there probably wasn't any law against this, but now there is, funny that eh? and the funnier thing is, I bet they would do this in England too! the only difference would be that if the food was given to someone on Social/Welfare, then they would take the Social money of the person because they would say, well you are getting more than you are entitled too! Grrrr!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      SirDent, nicely stated. Thank you!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Travel, when I first read about this I thought it was a joke....and then when I found out it wasn't it saddened me...and then angered me. I seem to be incapable of ignoring stuff like this.

      Thank you kind lady; I like your attitude.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, good to see you again! Now that I see you I wonder what has happened in Tombstone? Anyway, this is the kind of stupidity that leaves me shaking my head and grumbling well into the night. I'm not sure what kind of thinking process goes into an act like this one.

      Thank you my friend!

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, this story is getting quite a bit of attention nationally; I would imagine right about now the city council is booking airline tickets for a vacation out of town.

      Thank you my dear!

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      SirDent 5 years ago

      "Woe unto them which call good, evil and evil. good" The Bible said this time was coming.

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      Katheryn 5 years ago from United States

      Billy,

      Our government is like a runaway train on a collison course. This insanity is not insignificant and needs to be brought to public attention. I'm truly afraid for our future generations if things don't start to turn around and the government once again does it's job which should be by the people for the people. Things have somehow gone entirely astray and this is just one small example of thousands and thousands of similar demonstrations of our government in another one of it's finest moments :( As always voted up +

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      Old Poolman 5 years ago

      I can only guess at the reasoning behind a decision as utterly stupid as this one. It would seem someone feels threatened by this act of kindness, and the concept of neighbors helping neighbors. Could it be that if people in need start getting help from their community and neighbors that there will be less need for government handouts? If I can remember back enough years, I believe that is exactly the way it was done when I was younger.

      I would love to see Chester Township see so many letters expressing our feelings on this matter the Post Office would have to hire temporary employees to deliver all the mail. It would be very interesting if a given individual in Chester Township would be required to explain his reasons for this highly stupid act on his part.

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      Faith Reaper 5 years ago from southern USA

      If there was a button to press "disturbing!!!!" that's what I would be pushing. That food she is distributing may be the only meal some of the persons may get that day for goodness sake!!! That Town Council better watch out, remember what happened after that famous last saying, "Let them eat cake!" We know how that went. I am going to pray about this sad issue and that the hearts (what hearts) of the city council be convicted by the Holy Spirit! I mean, WHAT???? Thanks billybuc, hopefully, there has to be many in an uproar about this. In His Love, Faith Reaper

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dianna, this is a head-shaker. It would have taken the city council one special meeting to change the zoning...and yet they opted to threaten a generous act of charity. I simply do not understand.

      Thank you my friend!

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      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      Amazing! Once again our governing rulers have opted to do what is more beneficial for the law instead of mankind. Since when has charity become a crime in our nation? Paine's thoughts are probably not suggested reading for these politicians -- it shows!