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I was surprised to hear the mayor of New York propose limiting the amount of soft drinks a food stamp recipient could buy with food stamps. This is something that has bothered me for years.
I do quite a bit of the shopping in my family and being a nosey person, I have a habit of watching and listening to other people. Sometimes it irritates my wife when I can hear a conversation at the table next to us, but I can’t keep up with what’s happening at my own.
I can’t help being who I am, so when I shop, I notice what other people buy. Generally speaking, when I see someone with a cart full of soft drinks and junk food, they pay with food stamps.
That is just my observation, but I would like to hear the thoughts of an average check-out person at a local grocery store.
When I was young, we were poor and received commodities. For those who don’t know what that was, it was surplus food purchased by the government to help support crop prices in the U.S. The thing is they still buy surplus crops, they just don’t use them to feed the poor.
When I was a child, most poor people didn’t have cars; we walked everywhere we went, including school every day and church three times a week.
So how far have we come in the last 50 years? People on welfare have gone from walking everywhere they went and eating rice and beans to driving nicer cars than I have to the store to buy junk food with food stamps.
Add that to all the cuts in physical education and wonder why young people are overweight!
I know it would be difficult to monitor what people buy with food stamps, but not impossible. After all, they use a type of credit card, so it shouldn’t be too hard to make sure that a certain percentage of the money is spent on nutritious food.
I would suggest 90 percent, and if your child has a weight problem, let them walk to the store with you.