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EBT/Food Stamps

Updated on June 14, 2011

The Great Debate: Should the Government Pay For People's Food? What Do You Think?

Wouldn't it be nice to not have to work and to still be able to eat? You don't have to have a job and pay for your groceries like everyone else! Or if you do have a job, you can use that money to buy "good stuff" like flat screen tv's or speakers, or nice phones or cars, or you can go get that new tattoo you've been wanting or pierce your eyebrows and your lip. You can get someone else to pay for your food so you don't have to worry bout that bill! Wouldn't that just be amazing?!

As you read this, you must be thinking... "This is impossible." But in reality, no. It isn't. It's very possible. As someone with grocery experience, I've seen many, many people do this. It's a government handout called EBT/Food Stamps.

Please note: I am not making this lens to dis people who use food stamps. That's not my point. Some people really need them, and use them correctly. This lens is about food stamp abuse!

Please participate in this discussion and state your opinion. Keep checking back to see if anyone else has countered or agreed with your view! Please keep posting comments, as long as your content is appropriate!

Also, if anyone on this page uses Food Stamps (and doesn't abuse them) and have some questions about them, or would like some more information, then check out the resources at the bottom of this page. This lens is NOT written against you. It is written about Food Stamps abuse, and the Food Stamps program.

Article about the Obligations of the Government

Check out my article about the Obligations of the Government. See if you agree. Click here to read the article.

Have You Used Food Stamps

Have You Ever Used Food Stamps?

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First Of All, What Are Food Stamps?

Before we get into the great debate, let me make sure you know what Food Stamps are. They are defined in several ways:

1. The United States Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) , historically and commonly known as the Food Stamp Program, is a federal-assistance program that provides assistance to low- and no-income people living in the U.S.

2. These benefits are measured as the value of the food stamps issued to qualifying low-income individuals in order to supplement their ability to purchase food.

3. Coupons issued by the U.S. government for the purchase of food.

4. A Federal program which supplements the food-purchasing ability of low-income households through the distribution of coupons which can be used to purchase food for human consumption. Source: MN Dept. of Health and Human services.

Look this over and what does it tell you? I'll tell you what I get out of this.

My Interpretation of "Food Stamps"

If you aren't making a lot of money (whether it's because you really can't find a job, or just don't want to work), the government will pay for your food!

Free Food!

Hey this sounds pretty nice right? You can sit around and do whatever you want all day, then just wait for your EBT card to get refilled and go raid the grocery store and get what you want!

Ok. Maybe it isn't all that easy. But pretty close. The Eligibility for Food Stamps isn't extremely strict, but you do have to be eligible. Not jut anyone can get them. However, once you qualify, you can be rest assured that you now have someone else paying for your food. How sweet is that? You can use the money you do have for other, better things that you want to buy!

Food Stamps Can Be A Great Thing!

Sure... the idea that people who really can't afford food will now be able to get it is nice idea! It really is. But.... the government cannot solve everyone's problems. The Food Stamps program has helped many people who truly need it, I am sure.

This lens is not trying to disrespect those whom it has helped. This lens is about Food Stamp abuse. When people try to make the government pay for their food, when they don't really need the government's money, or when they just want someone else to pay for it so they can afford other things that they want.

Food Stamps or Not?

Is it really a good idea for the government to offer to pay for people's food? Yes or no? Why? How do you feel about it?

Should the government offer a Food Stamps Program?

What Do I Have Against Food Stamps?

As you read this, you may be wondering.... "Whoa. What on earth do you have against Food Stamps?" It's just that from my experience, I have seen too much Food Stamps abuse. From working at a grocery store, I saw people use EBT/Food Stamp cards all the time. When I first started working, I didn't understand what they were. But then I learned! I learned that it was the way the government paid for people's food. Since I was working and paying taxes, I realized that, in a way, I was the one paying for some of stuff! Since I realized I was paying for some of it, I thought i'd stop and look at what people bought with the money my government took from my check every week.

I noticed some people would buy staple foods, such as: eggs, milk, meat, vegetables... stuff like that. Real food! This didn't bother me so much, because I realized that this food really was going to help somebody. It really was going to feed them and help take care of them! That's a great idea!

Then, I saw people come through my line who would buy all kinds of expensive junk food. Name brand foods. Chips, donuts, fruit snacks, microwave popcorn, all kinds of stuff like that. Then they'd pull out their little EBT card, and I would stand there and think "Wait... is our government really helping you?" Obviously, I had to keep these comments to myself.

A final area I saw Food Stamps abuse is when people would bring up a cartful of groceries, and I would ring that up. Then, they would pull out their EBT card and use that to pay for their "groceries". THEN, they would buy beer and/or cigarettes and pay cash for them! This always confused me. If someone can afford beer and cigarettes, can't they afford their own groceries? Oh wait... maybe if they had to pay for their own groceries, then they couldn't afford their beer and cigarettes. Hmm. Wouldn't that just be a problem?

No worries! They never had to tell the government that they were buying beer and tobacco products! They just had to put out their hands and tell the the government they wanted some help paying for their groceries.

You Don't Need Food Stamps When....

In my opinion, you do not need someone else paying for your food when:

1. You can afford to buy beer.

2. You can afford to buy cigarettes.

3. You do not know how to spend money wisely.

4. You think you can only survive on expensive, name brand, junk foods.

Disclaimer

Please note, I do make a small amount in affiliate revenue from sales made through this lens. i am trying to save money for college, and this is a great way to do so!

Got anything else you'd like to add about Food Stamps? Post it here!

Anything Else About Food Stamps?

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: First you don't pay taxes. Based on the income you earn and the number of kids you have you get ALL the taxes you pay back...in fact you get a CREDIT. Second why do you have 2 kids all by yourself? IF he is not a nice dude, why on earth did you have kids with him...why must society pay for your bad choices? Third you buy cigs and beer yet go hat in hand to society to pay for your kids...what a pig

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Dude u are obviously an ignorant jackass I am a single mom who has been on foodstamps on and off for about three years I have two small girls and when I need it I apply and when I don't I don't and I want to say first of all that they have never been free for me if you did your research you would know that a lot of able bodied people on foodstamps have to do some kind of work to receive that I do about 120 work hours at a non profit organization to receive 560 for me and my two girls and if you do the math moron that's 4.66 an hour . I do work for the benefits I receive and your upset because u feel your tax money goes to someone like me? What about my tax money you think I don't pay taxes when I work?that I am exempt ? Between doin work hours at a thrift store I also have to keep logs of my job searching to remain eligible for my benefits and turn them in weekly so in my case it is not easy at all and I don't get to chill out at home all day. I am educated but due to the economy no one wants to hire an entry level medical coder when the job market is clogged and they can have their pick of hiring seasoned coders and paying them entry level wages so I am stuck accepting whatever job I can get to keep my girls in clothes and a roof over their heads. Do I buy cigarets your damn right I do and I might grab a beer at the bar I work at on the weekend ( which doesn't pay hourly, I work for tips only) and if my kid wants some Oreos and that's all I gotta do to see her smile maybe get her a slurpee at the seven eleven ill do that too thankyouverymuch in the same breath I do buy a lot of vegetables poultry and beef oatmeal and milk etc. is the system flawed a bit yes I see people all the time selling their stamps for drugs or whatever it is they are buying and yes I don't agree with that because it hurts their kids the most but you're you're gonna sit her and complain like a petulant child you should at least do your research your making yourself look foolish and so is the ass moron who talks about how people like me should be spayed or neutered I also agree that if you are on public assistance maybe it's time to consider some form of birth control but to talk like we're some type of leperous infested animal is beyond wrong. You got an issue maybe you should do something more proactive than whining more than my 2 year old. Take it up with your local politicians maybe there is a way you could HELP instead of kicking those who are already down. Yes the system is flawed but being in the system is not an easy thing either. When I was a child I didn't say I want to be on public assistance when I grow up ,it is not cushy down here. Your so damned worried about your tax dollars paying for my kids food, open your eyes idiot , your tax dollars are paying for prostitues in Cuba during the U.N meet and greet your tax dollars are being spent by governor when he feel like taking a ski trip to the alps and writes it off as a business trip the least of your problems should be public assistance that is at least one place when the people get what they put in it back.taxes! I can't believe your whining about that, did you even know that P.I.T. Was supposed to be temporary? Started durning the civil the go tried its damnedest to keep it active that is why they ratified the16 th amendment in 1913 to keep us paying taxes. You want to whine about your tax money maybe you should start there until then u can kiss my round shapely ass you idiot. Your harming more than helping do something positive with your life

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      It amazes me such a good program has so many flaws due to those that abuse the system. I am gretful for this program, I have always worked and seeking full time work as my company moved out of Country, I am a full time student, I am a full time Mother who left my childs father due to abuse. I receive help at this time for the first time in my life, I do buy smart, I buy healthy meals, but don't for a minute think I don't buy my child a treat like I would if I could afford it. However think for a moment should my child not be allowed a oreo cookie for a dessert because of my financial problems. I will make sure she has and is provided for any many times to buy those treats for her, I buy less amounts of food and go without, I still know what it is like to miss a meal or two, and we should consider all things before jumping to conclusions.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Growing up in lower Fairfield County, Ct during the late 60's my parents both worked, and no there was not always enough money for rent, and arguments over money(and the lack of it ) were plenty, but we got by.

      What this taught me was to have self-reliance, self-respect for my efforts, to manage my money well, and to work hard for what I wanted, even if that meant saving for it before I bought it. But in todayâs economy s**t happens and you may need some help, thatâs ok and those that truly need should have. But the people like my neighbor who, says if she has to work to feed her family what does she need her husband for? Her 12 year old says to me if you need food just ask my mom who to call, she says it is easy, standing in front of me in her real Uggs($185.00 per pair) should be ashamed of themselves!!!! Their laziness, what they are teaching their children, our future leaders. I am both astonished and ashamed and infuriated because it is my tax dollar that is funding this indolence. The system needs to change. Ebts should be for last resorts and real needs and readily available for those that have no other resources.For those recipients who are Defrauding and Abusing the system to enable them to have large screen TVs ,e-book devices, Dining out on Saturday night because they don't to cook , get off my tax dollar-back and get a job, or 2 or 3 and find your dignity and self-respect.

    • brittanyshaf profile image
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      brittanyshaf 4 years ago

      @bender2003: Where exactly is the government's responsibility? I receive scholarships from the government and federal financial aid, and I am extremely thankful for it. But if the government did not give me scholarships, I could not hold them responsible. I am very grateful for their assistance in helping me prepare for a career, and I couldn't afford college without those scholarships. But if the government didn't give them to me, I don't think I could say that it's their fault and responsibility to make sure I have a college degree.

    • profile image

      bender2003 4 years ago

      As a social responsility governments should pay the basic needs of the poor,homeless,family or environmental abuse victims. Adversely the social inequality will harm the social peace.

    • brittanyshaf profile image
      Author

      brittanyshaf 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I don't know how to apply, but if you do some searching online it can probably help answer your question. Here is an article to help you get started http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/federalbenefitprogra...

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      can't think about it. i hate bottomfeeders

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I need to apply for food stamps can you help me:??????????????????????

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Well I've read most of the comments posted. First of all, I became disable and is now receiving my ss diability.I must rely on some assistance and food stamps is one.I worked all my life when I applied I was eligible for $24.I too get upset when I see people abusing the system no matter what it maybe.Let's keep it real...no matter what you say or do, there will always be someone who will find a way to cheat the sysytem. What do I purchase with small amount. I shop at the .99 cent store. Thank God they sell most veggies, egg,, butter, bread, and etc. So I learn to spend wisely and make the food stamps work for me.

    • brittanyshaf profile image
      Author

      brittanyshaf 5 years ago

      @anonymous: You are correct in the fact that I am receiving government assistance. And yes, I drink soda and eat popcorn. I do not have a tv. Nor do I have a car. And you can ask anyone who knows me how ridiculously careful I am with my money. I am working full time this summer, running my own business, and have a job I am working online back home. I forego a lot of pleasures because I realize that college is expensive and I am trying to be very careful with my money.

      I wrote this page not to condemn food stamps. I agree government assistance is not always bad and is sometimes necessary. I am just upset by the abuse of the system. A lot of people fall through the cracks and do not need the money, but use it anyway so they can afford their beer and cigarettes. Although I receive government assistance to pay for college, and ESPECIALLY because I receive gov assistance, I am extremely careful with my money and consciously think through my financial decisions.

      Thank-you for reminding me that gov assistance in various forms is still gov assistance, and anyone using it should be careful with their financial decisions and make sacrifices.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      In alabama the highest a single person can even get for the ebt program is $200 a month; to get that most likely you are not even able to pay rent but instead are having to live with friends, relatives, or in a shelter if you can even find one in this state, $200 a month is NOT enough to buy basic food needs, no matter how much you buy in ramen noodles and such. The stamp office knows this, in fact, and will tell you so, asking only where are you going to get the rest of the money that you need for the month's groceries. By the way, single people are rarely actually eligible for stamps, as the requirement to get them includes being a certain age, not a student regardless {unless in a WIA or some such school to work program}, etcetera. A single person will NOT qualify for stamps even if homeless if between certain ages, no matter if they have no money at all coming in. For those talking about someone buying popcorn and a soda, maybe that was that person's lunch for the day while they were out trying to find work; maybe it was junk food, but you don't know which it was. I have a 'thing' for snack foods, rarely, but I get that food about once a month. That might be my lunch and/or dinner for the day, you don't know. {It is, actually, which is partially the point.} You also can not mingle your food with who ever you are staying with, as this is not allowed under the rules, so if you buy {for example} a roast that is way marked down and try to make a meal with it you also have to figure out how to freeze the remainder so it's still edible for however long it lasts instead of sharing it as meal and eating some of their meals to make up for it later. The whole idea that 'everybody' who uses ebt/food stamps and/or buys something that YOU think is not necessary or usable is ridiculous. Have YOU tried to eat ramen noodles and potato type things for a whole month? Do YOU only drink water? {I usually 'splurge' to buy tea, a box lasts me about a month, thank you.} Until you are or have been in this situation you basically don't even know what you are talking about.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I couldn't agree more about your husband being counted as a member of the family. That makes NO sense whatsoever to include his wages but not him. I was in a similar situation as well. How do they justify that?

    • LovelyMom77 profile image

      LovelyMom77 5 years ago

      I believe that responsible education and money management, living WELL below what you believe you should have (flat screen tv's in every room, a Chrysler 300 etc.) is the answer. This ia a consumer society and if people really think about it do we really need EVERYTHING that is advertised. My husband, 3 children and I survive off of one income, have an 11 year old car and can stay afloat without the need for cable, we have only one cell phone for his job, and we have no house phone. We don't go out to eat, have yet to go shopping at HIGH end retail stores, and can really only afford Food, clothing, shelter, electricity and transportation on his one weekly paycheck alone. I really think people have to stop and say "hey, what a minute, what can I truly afford with my paycheck?" and live in that bracket.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I am so grateful for my food stamps. I'm a nineteen year old girl working part time and living paycheck to paycheck. It is such a struggle to get by. I am provided $200 a month for food and it is so helpful to me, they give me more than enough and make it so that I can have healthy nutritious meals and have fun cooking too. I used to not be able to afford to get all the ingredients to whip up recipes for things I'd like to try; now thanks to the government I can and I no longer have to have Top Ramen for dinner every night... I can actually afford REAL food!! I am so happy!

      And now I can spend my money on rent, utilities, car payments, gas, and have a little bit left over to save up every month. Without my food stamps I'd be a poor malnourished twig. haha

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      if a customer pays with ebt and they also have a coupon, and the register says to give them money back do cashiers give that money back

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      F-ing BS! My wife and I got laid off, she's getting unemployment, I am not. And the state says we make too much money to get food stamps. So the system is broke! Two unemployed people on 1 unemployment check don't qualify for food stamps?!?!?!?!?!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      The author says they're saving for college...just wonder if they'll use any government assistance to attend and if so, will they forego soda, driving, tvs and popcorn while there. Cause if you can pay for that, you can surely pay for college, right?

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I feel, if these people can push a heavy shopping cart full of groceries then they can push a mop and wok as housekeepers and earn money to buy their own groceries. This country helps those that don't care to help themselves and the money our Government uses is our tax money, and that needs to come to a stop. Why should my lazy neighbors eat better then our family? I am for food stamps for the sick and those that worked to earn it, if their pension isn't enough to get by. To reward a family because they make unwanted children isn't helping them one bit. End this free giveaway and let these people work or ship them to another country.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Jimmy. This site has nothing to do with your preaching. It has to do with food stamps and the abuse of the system. By re-posting your message three or more times doesn't change the fact. Stop wasting this page to do this. Find a different site.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I thought this site was for commenting about food stamps, not for posting religious and spiritual healing, and posting it four times

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Finding this spiritual healer id freemercytemple@yahoo.com was a godsend. Even better, freemercytemple, youâre the most considerate and compassionate man I know. I was so down after being loveless for almost five years. I requested a love spell and, amazingly, it worked! Next week I will marry the greatest woman alive and I think itâs the real thing. To thank this spiritual healer, freemercytemple@yahoo.com , would not be enough, considering what youâve done.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Finding this spiritual healer id freemercytemple@yahoo.com was a godsend. Even better, freemercytemple, youâre the most considerate and compassionate man I know. I was so down after being loveless for almost five years. I requested a love spell and, amazingly, it worked! Next week I will marry the greatest woman alive and I think itâs the real thing. To thank this spiritual healer, freemercytemple@yahoo.com , would not be enough, considering what youâve done.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Finding this spiritual healer id freemercytemple@yahoo.com was a godsend. Even better, freemercytemple, youâre the most considerate and compassionate man I know. I was so down after being loveless for almost five years. I requested a love spell and, amazingly, it worked! Next week I will marry the greatest woman alive and I think itâs the real thing. To thank this spiritual healer, freemercytemple@yahoo.com , would not be enough, considering what youâve done.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Finding this spiritual healer id freemercytemple@yahoo.com was a godsend. Even better, freemercytemple, youâre the most considerate and compassionate man I know. I was so down after being loveless for almost five years. I requested a love spell and, amazingly, it worked! Next week I will marry the greatest woman alive and I think itâs the real thing. To thank this spiritual healer, freemercytemple@yahoo.com , would not be enough, considering what youâve done.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      So what, you don't need food stamps, that's your prerogative. You'll find peace in yourself when you realize life isn't fair. Yea some people have the government help them out. Some people are born into responsible families who are well off and don't ever know what it means to be starving and broke. That's just the fate they were given. I see no difference in whether a family gives you the conditions for you to be stable on your own, or if the government gives it to you. If you care you'll work your butt off to get off either one. Some don't, but hey, life isn't fair.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      im married and have 3 children, my husband works and i can not do to ra. we use snap. i get so hurt when people give us this look like they are better than us, or when what you buy is judged. we pay taxes, they are taken out of my husbands check every week.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I would like to know why i am having so much trouble with the welfare department?. I just recently had to do their quarterly report which i filled out and mailed back no later then 3 days after it had been received by me. Then i had a over the phone interview which i was present for. While talking with the county worker they informed me that out of all my papers that i know were all accounted for, they did not receive my Q-R7. They asked if they could send me a new packet including what i was missing and everything i already filled out. I said okay even though i was mad that i had to fill all that out again instead of just the Q-R7 that was misteriously missing when i know i sent it off and they should have known because i called their offices to check each paper before it was all mailed off. Okay so i sent all that stuff off again for the second time and called almost daily to make sure they recevied it. Finely they had confirmed it had been received however my worker had not processed my paper work, so were dose that leave me ''lets see'' i call the otimated system and it says were sorry your food-stamps have been discontinued or terminated. Now this is what i don't understand!. How are they gonna do that without sending me a notice since by law they are required to send a notice informing the person so they can take action and provent cancellation of benifts?. Also the federal government requires the Department of health and human services to process each and every claim with in 30 days of receving papers, my calim has not been processed which is a violation of my rights i do not want to take this to court all i want is what i am due my food stamps that i wentt out of my way to do the things needed to keep them. Somebody help please?

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I get food stamps, i'm ashamed of it but i don't really have a choice since i was laid off. However, my husband has a minimum wage job but because he is a legal immigrant they are counting my household as a one person household but they are counting his income with my unemployment. So, i get $16 a month in food stamps now, before he was employed i received $200 a month.

      Because i actually do pay my bills, my husband and i are both becoming malnourished as my entire monthly food budget is $166. That is literally all i can spend on it. Since my husband is the one working he needs to eat enough to make sure he doesn't get sick from not eating, as a result I've taken to drinking a ton of water throughout the day in lieu of eating. He assumes im eating during the day and i let him because it would stress him out more if he knew the truth and neither of us would get food if i ate during the day.

      I don't have internet or even cable at home. I'm currently at a library looking for a job in online classifieds or some other way to help my little family get by. I had a very nice job before the company went under, i have very nice clothes, a nice car that is almost paid for but no house. I bought insurance on the car upfront for a year when i was working, the car is only used to take my husband to work and when i was getting $200 a month in benefits to go buy groceries, (usually a month supply at a time,). For everything else we have to go anywhere for, we walk or on very rare occasions take public transport. I had big screen tvs, top of the line computers and used to buy organic fresh food and junk food as snacks. i was using my ebt card at a store while wearing nice clothes and took my groceries to a nice car. Believe it or not there are circumstances where someone who is on EBT actually does have nice things or appears to be well off in appearance.

      Granted, i'm also responsible. A month after i lost my job i had shut off cable & internet, taped most of the light switches in the house so that no one could turn those lights on, unplugged the tvs and all computers except the laptop, and unplugged everything except the refrigerator. If i need an appliance i plug it in long enough to use it then unplug it again. I had a lot of oil lamps and emergency candles which i used, (and still use,) to light the house instead of turning on lights.

      After 3 months of not being able to get another job i sold the tvs and all computers but the laptop. I've even sold the dvd players and stereos with all the hd surround sound systems. I worked as a professional and unemployment has made it clear i have to find another job within my field. I can't go to an interview in the type of environment i'm told i HAVE to apply for without looking nice. I have my own nail kit, I've done my own nails for years, i have about enough supplies to continue doing my nails to last me another year, all of which was paid for before i lost my job.

      Our quality of life went down to practically nothing after i lost my job so, when i was getting $200 a month in benefits i would occasionally buy microwaveable popcorn and a soda, it was mixed in with everything else i bought. It didn't do much but it was a slight moral booster that even though we've fallen far we can still rent a movie once a month and have popcorn and a soda with it. And before anyone asks that movie is played on the laptop as the tvs and dvd players are gone. One night of cuddling up together, watching a movie,eating popcorn and drinking soda can let us pretend for just one night, that we arent as bad off as we are is a tiny light in a sea of darkness.

      In short - it IS possible for someone who looks nice, is wearing nice clothes, who has a nice car and who has their nails done to appear in a grocery line and buy popcorn and a soda with food stamps and NOT be an abuser of the system. I'm very ashamed i need help at all, but to be lumped in with the "abusers" of the system just because i LOOK as if i'm well off and i'm buying a soda and popcorn is judgmental and discriminatory.

      On a side note, to the person that was "raised on junk food and wouldn't get whole foods if that's all you could get" you're full of it. When i had a job, we had a lot of healthy food, but we still had junk food as snacks. When i lost my job, we stopped getting junk food all together, with the exception of once a month getting popcorn and soda. I was raised on junk food. I made the choice myself to eat healthier as i would like to live to at least 60. I was also a very picky eater. I hate green beans with a burning passion, always have, they make me gag. When i brought some home from the food bank, i cooked them and ate them without thinking twice about it with minimal gagging. If you're hungry, you become a non-picky eater very fast or you starve. To pretend that you can't live without junk food and that ebt is worthless if you can't get junk food....that is just not feasible.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I am on food stamps and I get irate when I see one-sided comments on the internet bashing people who use them. I work long, hard hours 7 days a week and am on call 24 hours a day in case of emergency. I get paid $0 per hour. What is my occupation? I am a stay at home mother to a very very sick child (we're still fighting with diability, so we don't even get social security yet). He is on medicaid and as his mother I am too. I'm not exactly healthy either so it really helps. We are on food stamps, just the two of us. We live with my mother, without which we'd not have a roof over our heads, and my son will not have clothes. I wear nice clothes, because I know what to look for at the thrift store or Goodwill (still most of my clothes are the same I've been wearing since that last pre-school shopping trip with my Mom right before I went away to college). I have a computer, one I bought 10 years ago when I needed one for school and is still running (barely). Mom was buying the food for all of us until recently. It just got to be too much for her, she was going through a foreclosure and it got to the point where we couldn't find a place to live she could afford and continue to buy food for 3 (one being a rapidly growing pre-teen). The wild thing is, they way she works, she's barely home to eat anyway. She's not home at all for breakfast or lunch, and she usually gets home after dinner time, and she often has church group or meetings or something after work, so it's just my son and I really eating the groceries. Mom will usually just snag some leftovers or pour a bowl of cereal for dinner. So I saw about getting food stamps. I get food stamps for a "family unit" of two. I do buy soda or snacks, but I search for sales. I spend a day per week with all the flyers open in front of me making an excel sheet of deals and sales, coupons scattered about, making my shopping list. Most months my shopping falls under budget due to frugality, so I can buy snacks and soda and maybe even some of the lunches my mom eats or the cereal she likes. I don't even have a car. When my mother gets home for work, I take her (barely running) car and do the grocery shopping so that is one less thing she has to do during her day. I work for my benefits. I cook, my son has a homemade meal at least once a day (or leftovers of same). I clean, my mom rarely comes home to housework needing done. I teach, my son cannot go to school so he is homeschooled and so I teach and help as much as I can with his school work. At anytime, even in the middle of the night, he could have a nosebleed, a muscle cramp or need to be rushed to the hospital for a fever. So I have a job, even if it's not a traditional 9-5, and my pay is $367 per month for food and the support my mother provides.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think they are wonderful to those that can get them, ut for myself since I made a mistiake years ago and got a traficking charge, All thou I paid for it I thought by serving 3 years in prison . I can't get them but a SEX OFFENDER, CHILD PREDITORS AND EVEN SERIAL KILLERS CAN. THIS IS THE WONDERFUL GOVERENT OF OURS. IS DISCRIMINATION FAIR? I DON'T THINK SO AND THERE IS NO 0THER WAY FOR ME TO LOOK AT IT !

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Food Stamps aren't only beneficial for the recipient and their family but for the grocery stores/convient stores and all they down to the farmer. If the government were to eliminate the program a lot of people would suddenly go hungry as many of them depend of the purchase of the groceries. This is a great program as a while despite many people taking advantage. The benefits definitely outweigh the risks in this situation. There is really no telling how far the economy would be negatively affected. Yes, tax payers would not have to shell out as much of their hard-earned money, but you can bet there would be less tax payers as there would be a significant increase in unemployment.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think that people need to stop being so judgmental of people whom they know nothing about other than the fact that they see them in line with food stamps. there are people out there who abuse the system but that doesn't give you licence to bash anyone you perceive as being a bum abusing the system just by appearance. There is no way you can know just by looking at someone what has led them to this point in their life that they now are on food stamps. There was a quote circulating on FB not long ago that said "I hope I can afford an i-phone someday, like that lady using food stamps in front of me" totally inappropriate. How do you know that she didn't have a job where she was able to afford that phone and food, and due to the recession lost her job, and is now locked into a phone contract that she can't get out of? Maybe her parent's or a loved one wants to help her out but they don't have the 300 dollars a month to pay for her groceries, so they pay 50 or 75 dollars a month for her phone so she doesn't have to. Maybe she is a college student with a family who not only attends classes, studies, and works, but decided that it was worth the inconvenience of constantly being judged to be on food stamps for the time being (until she gets her degree) so that she can see her family a little bit and not go to bed with constant knots in her stomach and not be able to do anything for fun just because she is worried about putting food on the table. Or maybe she is a bum who plans to milk the system her entire life and do nothing to support herself. Bottom line is, you cannot tell by just looking at her in a line at the grocery store! And as far as buying junk food with food stamps, it isn't the best way to use the money, but you still have no right to judge! Maybe they are celebrating a holiday, birthday, something and they can't afford to go out or celebrate in a traditional manner, but they can thanks to food stamps afford to buys some special food for the special occasion. Yes, I am on food stamps, not because my husband and I are lazy, not because we want to be, but because we are both in school, we both work, we have a little girl( w had been married 1 1/2 years were using birth control and condoms but got pregnant anyway) and we decided that it was worth taking a hand up for this time in our lives while we are in school in order to avoid getting into unnecessary debt, still be able to have time to see each other and be a family, and not have to worry if we were going to be able to eat that month. Yes, we do every once in a while treat ourselves to something special, whether its some chips, or some candy or maybe spending some of our money to buy a shirt or a pair of shoes, so sue me! I see the food stamps program as a program there to help people get to a better place and enjoy a life without having to stress constantly over every single penny spent. We will not be on food stamps forever, but in the mean time Im not going to hide under a rock and do absolutely nothing because I am on food stamps. But regardless, in the end making such a harsh and hurtful judgment call simply by glancing at someone in the grocery store is wrong.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think that people need to stop being so judgmental of people whom they know nothing about other than the fact that they see them in line with food stamps. there are people out there who abuse the system but that doesn't give you licence to bash anyone you perceive as being a bum abusing the system just by appearance. There is no way you can know just by looking at someone what has led them to this point in their life that they now are on food stamps. There was a quote circulating on FB not long ago that said "I hope I can afford an i-phone someday, like that lady using food stamps in front of me" totally inappropriate. How do you know that she didn't have a job where she was able to afford that phone and food, and due to the recession lost her job, and is now locked into a phone contract that she can't get out of? Maybe her parent's or a loved one wants to help her out but they don't have the 300 dollars a month to pay for her groceries, so they pay 50 or 75 dollars a month for her phone so she doesn't have to. Maybe she is a college student with a family who not only attends classes, studies, and works, but decided that it was worth the inconvenience of constantly being judged to be on food stamps for the time being (until she gets her degree) so that she can see her family a little bit and not go to bed with constant knots in her stomach and not be able to do anything for fun just because she is worried about putting food on the table. Or maybe she is a bum who plans to milk the system her entire life and do nothing to support herself. Bottom line is, you cannot tell by just looking at her in a line at the grocery store! And as far as buying junk food with food stamps, it isn't the best way to use the money, but you still have no right to judge! Maybe they are celebrating a holiday, birthday, something and they can't afford to go out or celebrate in a traditional manner, but they can thanks to food stamps afford to buys some special food for the special occasion. Yes, I am on food stamps, not because my husband and I are lazy, not because we want to be, but because we are both in school, we both work, we have a little girl( w had been married 1 1/2 years were using birth control and condoms but got pregnant anyway) and we decided that it was worth taking a hand up for this time in our lives while we are in school in order to avoid getting into unnecessary debt, still be able to have time to see each other and be a family, and not have to worry if we were going to be able to eat that month. Yes, we do every once in a while treat ourselves to something special, whether its some chips, or some candy or maybe spending some of our money to buy a shirt or a pair of shoes, so sue me! I see the food stamps program as a program there to help people get to a better place and enjoy a life without having to stress constantly over every single penny spent. We will not be on food stamps forever, but in the mean time Im not going to hide under a rock and do absolutely nothing because I am on food stamps. But regardless, in the end making such a harsh and hurtful judgment call simply by glancing at someone in the grocery store is wrong.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I know a person who has 13 kids. She and her husband get food stamps. This may sound OK to you but not to me. They both have great jobs. The wife at a factory paying about $18 an hour. The husband works as a grocery store manager and brings home canned food that can't be sold (dented cans etc.) as well as other items that can't be sold--for free. They both have health insurance and get handouts from their church. I have no children, so why should my tax money be paying for these people to eat? I already have School Tax taken out of my paycheck to pay for them to go to school, plus the property tax I pay on my home is going to their welfare and the schools, also. I'm sure they get more than enough in handouts to live and get hundreds of dollars each month in Welfare to grocery shop, too. People like me are ones that are suffering, not them

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Hi, Well I will agree that there are people out there that abuse food stamps and it irritates the hell out of me and I wonder how they do it. I find being on food stamps difficult and annoying. It seems like the people that talk garbage about people abusing them don't realize that you have to have a review every 6 months to prove your finances and expenses. Car payments are not deducted so I don't know how people drive the expensive cars and get food stamps. People really shouldn't judge though! They base it off your finances and what your expenses are for rent and utilities. You can barely be making all your bills and get $20 a month for food. The only time I have found food stamps useful is after I got laid off from my job and had only disability income. You have to be really broke to get a decent amount of food stamps. Sure there are people that get around the system and I think it's crap but I think the best way to solve that would be to do drug testing for eligibility. I would be willing to bet the people that have lots of food stamps and all the expensive things are people that are dealing drugs. We should not get rid of food stamps the program is needed and we should not tell people they can only buy certain foods. If someone spends their monthly allotment on crap they probably won't have enough to get by for the month. There are limits on what you are allowed to buy also. Really people think about it if the government is telling people what they are allowed to eat how long before they control more and more of our lives. I thought we live in a free nation and the more governmental regulations we have on things the less of a free nation we are!!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @IanMayfield: I agree! Who are these people to tell us what we can and can't eat. I have food stamps, I work VERY hard but times are hard and making ends meet is harder. I buy many healthy things but there are times when I buy chips or soda too! They do not know what we have at home to eat and its none of their business either! No one tells them how to spend their paycheck or how to eat, the government gives tax payers a check back at tax season, so is it ok for us to say you CAN'T USE THAT MONEY ON ANY UNHEALTHY FOOD? No, that would be ridiculous, and so is what this article is saying! What I say is quit being so hateful, put a smile on your face and get a hobby instead of using your time to whine about things that are none of your business!!!!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think Food Stamps should not be looked down upon. Period. My mother was only making $800 and was raising 4 children on her own. (with no child support by the way). There ARE people out there who need them, and just because SOME people abuse the system, does not mean it's a dumb idea. Food stamps made it so my siblings and I could eat, regardless if it was junk food or not. Food is food, and the nutrition is irrelevant. (hello, most food in america is junk food anyway). And I'd love to see one thoughtless idiot argue with me about how they think Food Stamps shouldn't be used. My fiancé and I, who are newly on our own and are only 18 & 21, use Food Stamps because we cannot afford to pay for food when we have medical bills, electrical bills, the cable bill, cell phone bill, garbage bill, water bill, to pay rent, to pay insurance, to pay for gas, to pay for clothes, etc etc when only one of us has a job. TIMES ARE TOUGH PEOPLE. It's about time the government started doing some good and giving back. So please, do yourself a favor and research what you complain about so you don't look like a complete asshole to the world. Whoever posted this blog is thoughtless, stupid and completely ignorant. So happy to know YOU have your own money, and you're so lucky to not have to depend on the government for help, because your life is SO perfect, and you must judge on others. Fuck you.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I don't agree with abusing the system, but the system exists & is abused. Abolish the entire system, abolish the abuse. I mean, the ENTIRE system, not just this part of it. Personally, I am much more angered by my money going to fund the war machine than I am about feeding people, especially because the amount that goes to, say, feeding children in this country is pennies compared to what goes to killing children in other countries. I have no illusions; my priorities are straight.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Food Stamps can really help a lot of people. And who are you too judge if once in a while someone on EBT uses some cash to buy a 6-pack? Maybe they got a bonus, or want to celebrate something. If you make $800 a month, and after gas, utilities, and rent you now only have $200, so they get another $200 from EBT. There is nothing wrong with spending $10 of your 200 cash on a little bit of beer. It's only abusing if this is they constantly buy beer

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      If you really want to see how ebt is abused just go and shop or wait in line at a a low class grocery store and you will see abuse that will makie you want to march on washington

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Bless you for being a smart person! I've been saying the same thing all along, why is it that a mega rich politician who is dodging their rightful obligation to this nation gets off lightly..but we're so vicious towards a guy getting cigarettes?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Edutopia: I just wonder why people are so vested in this hatred towards those without..The "iphone's, car, etc" that those who misuse this service are just to compensate for the fact that their dreams are dashed and that if food stamps died off, they'd be out of luck. I'd rather be well off right now and pay for whatever government programs than have to be on it.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think that as time goes by, more and more people will be less worried about the person next to them's inability to purchase correctly/morally and start to be more incensed by the fact that THE MIDDLE CLASS fronts the majority of these gov programs! Why not tax the top 1% in a way that it would fund all of this without having to touch the middle class? Wait, am I being a fascist or a socialist now? Because I hope I'm being..well..logical?

      I've worked every day possible since I left high school, leaving my house and working crap jobs in New Jersey. I don't feel ANY MORE entitled to "keeping my money" than anyone else should. I'm currently on food stamps because my job was causing me enough stress that I almost lost my son and my wife. Does this mean I'm freeloading? I was a customer service representative; wouldn't this same "me first!" attitude that everyone here is showing be EXACTLY the same as the clients who drove me out of work?

      Be kind to thy neighbor, folks. Three years ago, I was sending my wife to my home country for a vacation, buying a newer car and getting my mother's mortgage off her back. THINGS CHANGE. Instead of complaining about the lady misusing this service, attack the real problem (as I've mentioned); you're unfairly paying a tab that richer, much more affluent persons in this country could pay three fold without a hitch.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Ebt is a great thing but it is abused, I think all states should do drug testing. I am a part time cashier at a grocery store (i am only part time cause I have only been there 5 months and have to work my way up the steps to get fulltime). I get food stamps (only $150 a month) to help with my part of bills, I live with my boyfriend and pays almost everything, we only have 1 car which he usually has cause he works farther away from home, so I take the bus. I don't abuse it and I just shake my head at people who do, what else can you do the government does need to look into the program and change a few things. Take off candy , soda and all energy drinks.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I just wanted to give an update. My husband found a job. He just started two weeks ago as an assistant manager at a fast food place. Ten years ago if you had told me this is how our life would be I never would have thought it possible. We had so much going for us. Our food stamps ended in January. We chose not to re-apply knowing that my husband would be starting this job. If after he is working we still can't make ends meet we may need to re-apply, but for now we still have a few hundred on the card and that should get us through until he receives a few paychecks. So for my family, this system worked. It fed my family so we could keep our utilities on while my husband put in 75 applications, went on over 20 interviews and finally was able to get a job. My husband even applied to deliver pizzas. The manager there said he received over 100 applications a week and my husband would be put on file when a driver position opens up. At this point if it does he will gladly work 2 jobs.

      To Carol- when I wrote this I was emotional and not focusing on my spelling. As far as your snide remark- would you say that to my face or are you someone who hides behind an anonymous screen to put people down to feel better about yourself? I hope it made you feel high and mighty to make that comment that had nothing at all to do with the topic because although you were able to spell everything correctly, your lack of couth and poor manners were very apparent!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: Shame on you! To come here and have nothing to say but to put someone down for spelling. Carol, you must be perfect that you can judge so harshly. This person was trying to give you insight into how the system applies to some and you bash her because of some spelling errors. I know I often do not spell every single word correctly especially when I am just sharing (and not realizing I am being judged for my spelling not my opinion), yet I manage to maintain my career and suceed in it.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

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      Edutopia 5 years ago

      I think you should go read up on food stamps a bit more before passing final judgement on them. You'll likely be pleasantly surprised at just how beneficial the program is.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      People who don't abuse the system don't flaunt their food stamps. If a family has $600 for cash and gets $200 in food supplements - that is NOT living easy. The people who use it wisely, do so quietly. They are NOT proud of it. 60% who get FS only do so temporarily. If you spend money on junk, you don't get extra food stamps. You run out of your food budget quicker, just like anyone else. You don't need food stamps, but scrape by, you can get lobster, too - just be aware you'll be eating a lot of Ramen and Mac and Cheese.

      I HATE abusers. They are out there, they are NOT the majority, but they don't have enough shame to not call attention to themselves, so this is what people think of the poor.

      If there is a system, there will be those who abuse it. It's not right, but why do we get so angry with the needy people who live in hell everyday because they want to eat like a human once in a while? What about the multi-multi-millionaires who spend a ton of cash on accountants and lawyers so they can avoid paying their fair share? If those people paid their fair share, it would be easier for the middle class to pay theirs, and less poor people in general.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: There is such a huge section of recipients who are content to remain in the welfare system. They do not have the ambition or work ethic to self provide. They have an attitude of entitlement. Unfortanately, this section is growing fast and damaging what the system was actually developed for. I have no issue with portions of my taxeds being used to help my fellow man but its time for heavy regulation. The bottom line is if we can remove the waste, we could help more people truly in need.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @ Kathleen - I completely admire and give credit to you and your family of 6 for the efforts you've put in to make things work...and maybe your 17-yr-old could help as well. As for the embarrassment of having to go through the line with food stamps, I agree. People SHOULD be embarrassed. That system is there for a reason: to help families like yours who are legitimately struggling to make it through. It shouldn't be a crutch of entitlement that SO MANY make it to be. My cheers to you for using the system as its MEANT to be used, and my heart goes out to you. People like YOU are what I'd gladly give my taxes to. I wish I could choose where to put my taxes, so that I know exactly where it goes and that its to families like yours. I have NO sympathy to the mothers who squander everything on fancy things, cigs, and booze...then expect the government to give them the rest. Thank you for being part of the small percent who don't abuse the system.

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      IanMayfield 5 years ago

      If the food stamps program ALLOWS people to use their EBT cards to buy potato chips, herbal tea (horrors!), popcorn, doughnuts or whatever then you can hardly blame them for doing so.

      If you'd rather see food stamps used for staples only then lobby Congress to change the rules.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Food stamps need to be eliminated. Use government surplus like in the 60s, people will have more pride and get back to work. There is no control now on what people buy so system is abused. Sick of my hard earned money going to bums that abuse the system. Also people who cannot afford to pay for their own child's needs should think twice about having them and depending on the working society to pay for them.... America needs to wake up!!!

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      Parvardi 5 years ago

      @anonymous: If your young [and admirably hard working] wife in fact has the most serious medical condition you say she has, then why in God's name are you BRAGGING about you and she spending your taxpayer provided food stamp money on "JUNK FOOD" ? !

      Particularly when your wife, with having such a severe high blood pressure medical condition at such a young age, would be employing just about the most effective strategy IMAGINABLE, for making you a YOUNG WIDOWER just about as soon as humanly possible !, by her consuming [typically high SALT, high refined SUGAR, and high DESTRUCTIVE high-heat-exposed saturated and "trans" FATS] total crap JUNK FOODS ! ! !

      You, if you love and value your wife, and she, if she respects herself and loves you and wants to stay around [this earht] and have a life with you and possibly raise a family with you, should be the absolute FIRST people to want to get your wife COMPLETELY off any and all [whether paid for with food stamps or not] JUNK FOODS !, as a major core componet of any sincere effort on your parts to try to preserve and extend this young woman's life, in light of this "deathly" condition you say she has.

      Since certainly high SALT, high refined SUGAR, high processed saturated and "trans" FATS total crap JUNK FOODS are absolute POISON to a young woman suffering from this most serious medical condition you say your wife has.

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      Parvardi 5 years ago

      @anonymous: If your young [and admirably hard working] wife in fact has the most serious medical condition you say she has, then why in God's name are you BRAGGING about you and she spending your taxpayer provided food stamp money on "JUNK FOOD" ? !

      Particularly when your wife, with having such a severe high blood pressure medical condition at such a young age, would be employing just about the most effective strategy imaginable, for making you a YOUNG WIDOWER just about as soon as humanly possible !, by her consuming [typically high SALT, high refined SUGAR, and high DESTRUCTIVE high-heat-exposed saturated and "trans" FATS] total crap JUNK FOODS ! ! !

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      Parvardi 5 years ago

      @anonymous: If your young [and admirably hard working] wife in fact has the most serious medical condition you say she has, then why in God's name are you BRAGGING about you and she spending your taxpayer provided food stamp money on "JUNK FOOD" ? !

      Particularly when your wife, with having such a severe high blood pressure medical condition at such a young age, would be employing just about the most effective strategy IMAGINABLE, for making you a YOUNG WIDOWER just about as soon as humanly possible !, by her consuming [typically high SALT, high refined SUGAR, and high DESTRUCTIVE high-heat-exposed saturated and "trans" FATS] total crap JUNK FOODS ! ! !

      You, if you love and value your wife, and she, if she respects herself and loves you and wants to stay around [this earth] and have a life with you and possibly raise a family with you, should be the absolute FIRST people to want to get your wife COMPLETELY off any and all [whether paid for with food stamps or not] JUNK FOODS !, as an absolutely major core component of any sincere effort on your parts to try to preserve and extend this young woman's life, in light of this "deathly" condition you say she has.

      Since certainly high SALT, high refined SUGAR, high processed saturated and "trans" FATS total crap JUNK FOODS are absolute POISON to a young woman suffering from this most serious medical condition you say your wife has.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think people on food stamps should only be able to shop at a food bank. hey angry cashier i agree with you. i had a woman use ebt for herbal tea!!!! another woman inskin tight clothes and a nail fill buyher kids cupcakes with an inch or more of frosting. my mom used to get nail fills. cost her 35 a week. my husband and i arent on welfare but we aresoconservstive i am trying to makea 50 gift card last 2 months. yes some people need ebt but don't shop at my store which is a very expensive chain. if i can't afford to theyshouldnt either. People on ebt. most of them. feel they have more rights than poor slobs who are scrimping and savingeach dime. you get ebt you should only be allowed to shop at foodbanks. you can get nutritious food if you shop smart.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      So, you have a BA? Did college teach you to spell too?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      What you are missing is that food stamps are a farm aid (welfare for farmers) program

      The farm lobby loves the program

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I completely understand the extremes in emotions over food stamps and the lack of regulations on how the money is spent. I can only tell my opinion. When i was in my late teens as worked in a grocery store and was so angry out the abuse I witnessed with food stamps. The junk food, the candy, the high priced meat my own parents who both worked couldn't afford. As the years have gone on I worked in the healthcare field in pediatrics with children with special needs. For 8 years I worked with families who 50% on medicaid and most open about getting food stamps. Some I personally was pissed about: the women with 2 autistic children who then gets a new boyfriend and gets pregnant again, who claims there is no way she can work because of her kids disability who both receive social security (however both are at preschool or school all day). Others I was glad my taxes could help (the mother who's husband of 10 years left her when their youngest of 3 kids turned 3 and was diagosed as severally autistic, who works full time in a daycare center because it is the only job she has been able to keep because of how often his school calls for her to come get him do to behavior issues, who comes into every appointment and follows all suggestions I give, instead of just dropping him off at therapy or sitting in the waiting area flipping through magazines, who lost her house, has had to fight her ex every step of the way for any support, and who I have seen wear the same clothes and shoes for 6 years). Now to the irony for me: I went to college got my BA worked in the healthcare field for a total of 9 years, I hurt my back 8 years ago and it has been on and off getting worse for years. I am married have 4 kids and always said if you can't afford them DON'T HAVE THEM. In May I was in so much pain an MRI showed I had severe digeneration of my discs in my back and one was almost completely gone, which is why I had numbness and piercing pain down my right leg, my tailbone had bone spurs and was hanging by a thred. I had to get rods and screws in my back and my tailbone removed. I couldn't go back to work after 12 weeks without restrictions so my job let me go. My husband who has been self employed for 17 years was hit hard with the economy and so I had stepped up my hours working to help the last three years. We cut out our kids sports and extras during this time. We even had a small savings "just in case". That is all gone. It has been 8 months and I am not even close to recovering, and the doctors say it could take up to 2 years and I will probably never be able to do therapy again, so there goes my BA. My husbands job has slowed so much and he has to help me so much there is no money. We lost our medical benefits when I lost my job because we couldn't afford $1350 a month for cobra. My husband has put in 48 applications places to try and get work with benefits and gone on 6 interviews, 5 of which said he just had been out of the business and working his own so long, and was up against younger up and coming applicants. Right now he has a 3rd interview with a fast food place for an assistant manager job and we are praying he gets it. We lost our home, one car, had to file bankruptcy because of my medical bills. We were able to get my kids on medicaid and health choice, but my husband and i could not, so as my medical problems continue it is out of pocket. We applied for food stamps, and thank goodness qualified. It was food or electric at the point. I am trying to make the $ go as far as possible. I clip coupons, I watch for sales, but I also refuse to have my kids eat crap. We go to Aldi's and buy tons of fruit and veggies for a pretty good price. We eat the food we buy and never throw anythign out. I still get discusted when I see someone with an EBT card buying alcohol or cig's with their own money. I am embarrassed every time I have to use the card, and my husband can't even go through the check out line he is so embarrassed (the first time he went out to the car and cried). We have treated ourselves some: bought small candy for the kids christmas stocking, a bag of candy to take to the kids schools when asked for school parties, we used to have crab legs all the time and once this summer when they were $3.99 a pound we bought 3 lbs as a special treats since my kids have lost so much. I can not wait until we don't need help. We qualified for 6 months, who knows if my husband gets this job is we will qualify again, so I am trying to not use all each month so it will go further. For our family of 6 (kids are 17, 14, 12 and 4) we get $550 a month. That seemed like so much to me, but I am so so very grateful. As far as those taking advantage: we have sold our wii and all games, my husbands and my golf clubs, some furniture, etc to pay bills. I sold clothes my kids grew out of and toys on ebay and craigslist to buy a few things for them for christmas and my dad sent a giftcard to buy a little more. We live now in a 3 bedroom apartment and my kids had to change schools (my oldest is a senior). So I get the anger at the abuse of the system, I would gladly show my receipts I have nothing to hide with the food we buy, but just know there are those of us that would rather do anything than have to go through the humiliation of applying and using food stamps.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      be back to give my input

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      i use food stamps i buy all the groceries i need foe me and my two kids yet i have no flat screen, no new car, and well i would love to get my tattoos done but no i don't have the money why because i still pay bills and gas and that's about all the money i have. some of the ppl your talking about are the drug dealers have them by me who make 75+k a year tax free and still take every hand out they can from the government.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      "Wouldn't it be nice to not have to work and to still be able to eat? You don't have to have a job and pay for your groceries like everyone else!"

      Dunno where things work in the alternate universe YOU'RE from, but here in reality, people MUST work (20 hrs/week, 80 hrs/month, or do work study if in college) to get food stamps.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      People shouldn't judge what others feed there family. Think about it you spend your most your life in a good job but then bam you lose that job and your stuck as a temp no matter how hard you work, my husband works with a bad back and cracked bleeding hands , we do have food stamps while the economy is bad but as soon as my schooling is done an were off them I don't expect ill look down on people for eating what they want to eat. The fact is when you say what people should buy its only your strong opinion. I personally don't agree with buying all junk but if we have a bday were going to buy a cake and we drink pop but we buy the off brand and other than that we buy mostly natural foods other than chips for quick lunch days. I do think a drug test to get the food stamps would be wise the people who just abuse the system need to be picked out so they know just how much of a blessing the EBT cards are :)

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I wonder why food stamp recipients do not have to show their receipts on a regular basis? Oh sure, not all stores give you a detailed description on their receipts, but if they want to keep their right to accept food stamps, then they should be required to fix their receipts! Doing this would not fix the problem, but it would cut down on a lot of the junk food purchases! I worked in the convenience store business for a long time and it makes me sick to see people wasting MY money on their sugar fix.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I get food benefits (I was laid off and have been looking for work) and I do use them sensibly (buying ingredients instead of box dinners, in season fruits/veggies, etc) I have to agree with you on your point of view. I too have seen women like you describe and I wonder "who approved your benefits?" That kind of abuse of government programs make those who need it seem like the ones who don't. It's created a large stereotype against those of use really trying to get their shit together.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I swear, if I see one more obese family come in and buy each of their 4+ children 3 or more items of candy or junk food with their EBT card I'm going to scream...what kind of future are you giving to your child?

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I'm so tired of you cashiers thinking you the ebt experts. Oh, secondly; be glad you have a job sweetheart. No, instead complain about the ppl coming in rather than rejoicing that you're in a cool air conditioned space getting a paycheck. Yea, there are bad ones out there, But I swear every time me and my wife goes (yes, we have one) to buy groceries ( and by the way, we buy junk food too) these stupid cashiers give us dirty looks not knowing that my wife has a deathly high blood pressure disease at the age of 24 while she busts her ass for 7.25 an hour or that I am busting my ass going to school at home online and watching two kids going through there 2-5 yr old phases. All I'm saying, you cashiers don't know shit, lol

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: I am in a similar boat, and feel as you do about EBT. I want to thank you for being willing to volunteer to be in the military and risk your life so everyone on here has the freedom of speech that they have. It sickens me when our military are not able to get decent jobs after serving our country, something more than not are NOT willing to do. SO THANK YOU!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: I see people selling stamps, or sometimes buying with multiple cards. Then they load it into their lovely ride. My husband and I are not Big Money Makers, but we did fine for years. Recently, I was diagnoses with a Chronic Disease. The treatment can be successful if began early on. We tried everything possible to save money. I was already thrifty, reading weight on boxes of food and square footage on toilet paper.We don't eat out, go to the movies, nothing. We go to parks or free museums. We gave up our home and moved to a dump. We ONLY done this to pay for the medications I need. Without me working, I have $25-30 at the end of the week for groceries. Milk, bag of spinache, and one type of meat to cook and cheese because it helps you feel full. Its sad, I applied for stamps today. They would not take any of our expenses, they said we don't qualify. We have insurance, I only needed help with food. My copays plus gas are over $600 a month, because there is only one Dr within 100 miles of me that treats my condition. Then after, I went to my local grocery store and spent my last 20 on the items I stated above, and started discussing Netflix with a cashier. She said she has 3 kids, 2 x-boxes,2 Wii's, a DS, and a tv in every room, Unmarried of course. Hud recipients are protected from living in crappy houses, while working people can't even get doublepane windows. I think I know why America is in the toilet. There is a landlord tenant act here, but I called every agency in my area and can't even get someone that pretends to know what I am talking about.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I don't understand how one person can make a judgement call on what someone else is buying for them selves or their family. I personally don't feel like buying junk food is good with money or food stamps but if they didn't have stamps i'm sure they would sill do the same thing. And i feel like anyone has a problem with what someone else is buying they need to either mind their own business or write to their congress instead of complain about it. I don't have stamps and i buy brand name foods and would do the same thing if i had stamps but i also use coupons to save money.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      My neighbor finally found a job after 2 years, and she WAS on food stamps. She has had nothing but a nightmare since sending her food stamp card back to them. Seems like it's a lot harder for her to turn in her food card and leave the free handout system than it is to get on and stay on the free food wagon! Why is it that the gov't is making things easier for her to STAY on the free food program rather than get off of it? Just wonderin?" BTW, her caseworker didn't even congratulate her when she called her and told her that she indeed had found a job and would no longer need their services. What's up with that? I thought these so called caseworkers were supposed to want these recipients to find employment and get off of food stamps. Nope, the caseworker made her life a living hell.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: you are soooo right. I can't stand to see people at the store I work at come in and buy party trays and cakes. I have to work my butt off to just be able to afford just one tray

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I see too many people selling food stamps for unneeded items such a shame to use the government like that to make money when there are people out there who actually need these benefits

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Why should we have to be responsible for your poor choice that you made by leaving the military? You DID have ALL military benefits available to you such as medical, dental,etc through the military. Give them kids up for adoption! Then you will be a lot better off.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      if you are buying anything at all while you get foodstamps that is the working peoples money you are spending, because when you take food stamps to pay for your grocerys any money you have needs to be spent on helping your self.cigs beer and drugs only add more expense to the tax payer in medical card payments.single moms you gotta know by now how you keep getting pregnant food stamps breed food stamps if you don't believe it look around generations of em all think they are entitled for one reason or another,learn a skill get a job then have babys that is the way the working people do it just sayin when they take my tax dollars and give them to people in the form of earned income credit while these same people get food stamps and welfare medical cards that is not right. yes there are people out there that really need help and they should get it but the abuse and the laziness of way too many makes me sick.cancel it all and restart with a taxpayer deciding who gets help and who gets a kick in the pants and sent out to pay taxes for a change just my 2 cents that i had left after taxes

    • brittanyshaf profile image
      Author

      brittanyshaf 6 years ago

      @anonymous: I completely understand! This lens was not written for people like you. It was written for people who are abusing the system. Thank you for your comment!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      i know that i was almost ashamed that i had to take food assistance. i gotout of the military and had to find a job to support my family. i worked my butt off doing whatever i could find to pay the bills but even then i often had to decide whether to pay the utilities or by food. have a place to live or dinner to eat. i used to work 2 part-time jobs but recently found one paying $10 hr which is enabling me to take care of the necessary expenses to live. i was raised to support my family any way i can and to work for whatever i received. after my 2nd and last child was born while i was deployed i came home to extra expenses that i wasn't capable of paying. even when my family was in the rough spots we always tried our best to help those who had it worse than us. it took a lot of coaxing and prodding by my wife and WIC agent to get me to apply for EBT. i did get approved but i told the agent that i wanted a hand UP not a hand OUT! i pay taxes still so in a way i'm still paying for the EBT fr myslf and othrs. i think that the people who speak without thinking should put theirselves in our(EBT people)shoes for a minute. I, fr one, don't like knowing i need help, i like the feeling of acomplishmnt of providing fr my family with MY sweat and hard work! EBT should ONLY buy the staple foods, dairy, meat , veggies, ect. to eat a healthy diet. Even with this help i still buy the generic brands of most stuff, it saves money and usually still tastes the same. i am deeply thankful for those who pay taxes and help supply the help some of us need time to time. The minute i see myself buying what i don't need i quit! i wil not abuse a system that is a God send. people who abuse the system should be reported by the cashiers and forced to forfeit the benefits.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Someone mentioned earlier that they people making these comments much be young and dumb. Well I am 34. I was a single mom when I was 19 and received assistance. I quickly realized that I did not want to do that forever. So I used the program the way it was designed to be use. I went to college!!! I received a teaching degree and got a job and off the system. I later married a wonderful guy and had 2 more children that we paid for ourselves!!! ANYONE CAN GO TO COLLEGE!!!! The system helpes make it possible. But the system also helps make it possible to sit on your butt and have child after child after child for FREE!! My husband and I would' love to have more children but I'm too busy paying for your children that I can't have anymore of my own. Yes there are people who really need help. Great! Help them but not forever. My family of 5 has had to cut back on our spending due to the economy. We stop going out to each as much and clip coupons. We now get by on $400 or less a month for groceries and we get plenty to eat. Good food with good nutritional value compared to processed food. The government gives out too much money to a family in food stamps. A family of 5 can get $800 or more and yes they tend to buy a lot of junk. The government should give less food stamps to one family and they will have to learn to stretch a dime like the rest of the working class world. What one family gets of a month could feed 2 families and unfortunately the peope abusing this system are taking it away from people who really need it. People take a good look at yourself and see how you are taking advantage of me a tax payer and others. Go to college and show your kids that you can't settle, you have to take control of your life and make something out of yourself. I don't know about you, but I want my kids to be better than me!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I just recently got on EBT/food stamps. I made about $5,000 total last year while also supporting my husband. Before we were on food stamps, we saw a guy out in a parking lot offering to buy people's groceries if they give him money for beer. I turned him down. I don't drink or smoke... although I do have facial piercings from a time when life was a little easier on me.

      Honestly.. I don't care if somebody uses an EBT card to buy groceries and then pull out cash to buy cigarettes. As long as they are using their own money. But if they aren't doing necessary things like paying bills, taking care of their kids and whatever else with that money, then there's a problem. But there's no way to know those things.

      My fear is that people who are trading their food stamps for that crap, and are on food stamps while scamming the system (AKA, getting more money than they report using somebody else's social security number which hurts the person whose SSN it belongs to) are going to effect people like my husband and I. People who really do need help.

      And just to make something clear.. you DO have to work. When we signed up neither of us had a job, and they required us to sign up for Employment First to prove that we were actually looking for a job.

      So people who are against them, please please please be careful who you are punishing. Please be smart about it. We want to get rid of the slugs who only want free money... not the ones who have gone days without eating to pay their bills, taxes and the insurance that we are forced to pay in the U.S.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      PEOPLE WHO ARE DISABLED OR HAVE AN ILLNESS SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO RECEIVE FOODSTAMPS. WHAT IS TALKED ABOUT IS PEOPLE OUT THERE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF , PEOPLE WHO ARE CAPABLE OF FINDING A JOB WHO TAKE ADVANTAGE!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @JJNW: Thank you. a voice of compassion. I wish other people would not judge until they walk a mile in someone else shoes.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I hate food stamps! I work at a grocery store, and there have been so many cases where I've become infuriated. After buying a cart full of crap, one gentleman wearing pajamas whipped out his EBT card, waved it in my face, and said, "Hey thanks for buying my groceries!" I see people purchase trays of shrimp, birthday cakes, 12 packs of energy drinks (which you know is going to be mixed with alcohol later on), soda, chips, dip, pizza, and so much other junk. They rarely buy any off-brand items to save money. Along with that, after they pay for their groceries, they buy lottery tickets, cigarrettes, and alcohol. I always love to see women with Abercrombie clothes, mani/pedis, Prada handbags, and spray tans pay with EBT cards. Now don't get me wrong, I would not mind food stamps one bit if they were put to good use. Unfortunately, that is hardly ever the case with the food stamp customers i see.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I hate food stamps! I work at a grocery store, and there have been so many cases where I've become infuriated. After buying a cart full of crap, one gentleman wearing pajamas whipped out his EBT card, waved it in my face, and said, "Hey thanks for buying my groceries!" I see people purchase trays of shrimp, birthday cakes, 12 packs of energy drinks (which you know is going to be mixed with alcohol later on), soda, chips, dip, pizza, and so much other junk. They rarely buy any off-brand items to save money. Along with that, after they pay for their groceries, they buy lottery tickets, cigarrettes, and alcohol. I always love to see women with Abercrombie clothes, mani/pedis, Prada handbags, and spray tans pay with EBT cards. Now don't get me wrong, I would not mind food stamps one bit if they were put to good use. Unfortunately, that is hardly ever the case with the food stamp customers i see.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I hate food stamps! I work at a grocery store, and there have been so many cases where I've become infuriated. After buying a cart full of crap, one gentleman wearing pajamas whipped out his EBT card, waved it in my face, and said, "Hey thanks for buying my groceries!" I see people purchase trays of shrimp, birthday cakes, 12 packs of energy drinks (which you know is going to be mixed with alcohol later on), soda, chips, dip, pizza, and so much other junk. They rarely buy any off-brand items to save money. Along with that, after they pay for their groceries, they buy lottery tickets, cigarrettes, and alcohol. I always love to see women with Abercrombie clothes, mani/pedis, Prada handbags, and spray tans pay with EBT cards. Now dont get me wrong, I would not mind food stamps one bit if they were put to good use. Unfortunately, that is hardly ever the case with the food stamp customers i see.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Whoa! Quoting John Smith here, "If you can't feed them, don't breed them!" Are you serious? It's my fault that I'm a single mom that can't get a job and was left to raise my son on my own? I'm in full time school to become a registered nurse, and food stamps are a life saver and help me feed my growing boy! I wasn't willing to accept the government aid at first but my case worker said I qualified for it because i have NO INCOME!!! Oh yeah, did I forget to mention I'm also disabled US Veteran? Mr. Smith you are entitled to your opinions but food stamps and other government aid help A LOT of people that really need it. It's the ones that abuse it that give people like me a bad name. I for one think I'm entitled for the government to pay for my damn groceries, I gave the US military years of my life and was left with a painful disability because of it!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: Many schools may offer free lunch programs, but Schools don't take into account that many students have allergies and unless those schools are willing to disclose every ingredient, those students are most likely better off bringing their own.

      And even if they did disclose what they are actually serving most students and their parents would probably never want to eat it again.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      Alright I know there are people who abuse the programs, most of them doing so by some form of fraud, I have seen people who trade their food stamps to a dealer so they can get drugs, I have seen people who cannot possibly be maintaining their weight solely on the maximum Food stamp amount given in my state, not even if they hit every local and not so local food bank available.

      I have worked as a cashier, I have recently been diagnosed and classified as disabled. Oh I look physically able, and for the most part I am. Unfortunately why I am disabled, means I cannot drive, I can barely even handle waiting in a doctor's waiting room, let alone going down to the local welfare office and sitting in a crowded room for countless hours. Trying to pass an interview is practically impossible. I was actually accused of not wanting to work, by an interviewer. If I did not want to work, I wouldn't have filed an application let alone come to an interview.

      To have people look at me and think I might be abusing the system is insulting. I use almost every dime I get, and not just in Food stamps in an attempt to eat a relatively healthy diet, yet no matter what approach to I take to the shopping I still come up short by the end of the month. And yes even going to the store is hard for me to handle.

      Oh and two of the questions I was asked when I applied was do I Smoke, do I drink? A third was do I take any illicit substances. Since I don't, I don't know what the result would be if I did. But I do think the Government has largely accepted tobacco as a highly addictive substance.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      oh wow there are a bunch of ignorant children on this site i personally get foodstamps as i lost my job due to a major illness that resulted in surgery ... am i supposed to do without until im recovered physically... good luck to me i guess because my body is really going to heal without calories to burn so my body can heal ... in this poor economy many people who have worked hard and paid into these programs are getting some of the benefits back now that times are tough ... thinking only of the people that abuse them by having too many children , which is rare anymore because many states levy penaties against that or cut benefits off after a reasonable amount of children usually three to four... and you cannot make snap judgements just because somebody happens to be in a tough spot nor can you tell what their exact circumstances are just at face value... it would appear that most of the posters on here are younger people and it's a bit sad that younger people are so quick to judge when they can't see the whole picture

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      A lesson for all Americans!!!!! IF YOU CAN'T FEED THEM, DON'T BRED THEM!!!!!!!!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: To late it is happening right now. Look at the government housing projects.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      hey captain! You can't talk about food stamps if you don't have a job. Im tired of not being able to buy one cart of food when there are people buying three carts full of food. lets help the people that really need help. IE the elderly, disabled etc. not the people that can work and choose not to! And don't even try to feed me that crap "there are not any jobs" cuz that's bull crap. There are jobs ! Its just that people don't want to work those kind of jobs. As though they are better than those jobs. GOD HELP AMERICA!!!

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      How is buying microwave popcorn abusing EBT? It's one of the cheapest foods and filling. Going to call buying Top Ramen abuse next?

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      first some back ground on me so you may understand my frustration.i also work as a store clerk and am studying to become a P.E teacher, and see the abuse. people go in to the store and but completely random junk food(candy,soda, juice DRINKS) we sell food that is actually good them but they chose the crappy stuff. Also every i had not seen any one talk about the children. parents go in their and but them a lot of what they shouldn't eat and little if any of what they should. that is the main thing that bothers me. for one, the children in our country are already the most obese of the whole world so why keep teaching them such bad habits so that i (P.E teachers) have to try to deal with them at school. Also i cannot stand when friends find themselves at the store and offer to pay for their food using the ebt card.

      i just think that the old "FOOD stamps "(paper version) where a lot better because people where only allowed to but healthy food for their family and in doing so making America not so fat and also helping them budget wise.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I have an ebt card. I am allowed 200$ a month which is the maximum in my state. I am unemployed and actively searching for work. Sometimes I feel depressed about my situation and buy a nice steak dinner to cook for myself but that just means I have to eat less the rest of the month. People like to judge others without knowing any facts. Since I am poor I should just not eat or eat stuff that you wouldn't feed your dog?? try spending only 50$ a week on food for yourself.

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      anonymous 6 years ago

      I think ALL human beings should have basic rights to food, water, shelter and education!! Allowing people to fall below these basic needs leads to crime/violence.

    • jackieb99 profile image

      jackieb99 6 years ago

      They can be a good thing if distributed properly!

    • Ann Hinds profile image

      Ann Hinds 6 years ago from So Cal

      Do the people on food stamps notice that those who can afford food, eat the same junk that they would like to buy for their families? Unfortunately, what the checker's see is the once a month purchase of food that these families make before the amount is depleted. The families who can afford food spend that much as a weekly expense. Before you slam those on food stamps, look around. It might be someone in your family who is ashamed to tell you. The next time you shop for groceries, try spending only $100,00 a month for each person in the family. Tell your children that you can't afford cookies or chips and maybe next month you'll buy some. There are more people on food stamps who need the help than you realize. Until we solve the unemployment program for those families who actively look for work and have run out of benefits, you are not in a position to judge.

    • hotbrain profile image

      hotbrain 6 years ago from Tacoma, WA

      When you get food stamp benefits, or any other "benefits" from the government, you give them some control over your life. Is it worth it? Only if you really need the help. Make it harder for people to get the food stamps and see how many people are still interested. But I think the government likes people being on food stamps... They can use it to control people, to influence how people vote, and more.