We Are Deep In the Heart of Texas

Nomadic seasons of farming adventures with nature thrown in to include; a pinch of family, snippets of friends, counting our blessings, paying IT forward, home school, and the spicy things I decide to rant about.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Before You Judge, I Just Feel Like Railing

Yesterday, I read a story about a mother who applied for Food Stamps for herself and two children.  She was so upset she pulled out a gun and took hostages.  After awhile, she turned the gun on her children and then killed herself. 


I have an idea there is much more to this story than what is being reported.  What I don't understand is how many more people out there in America is facing the same humiliating doom of applying for public assistance.  Personally, I have seen folks in local stores make faces and comments to those carrying the Texas SNAP card.  Really???? Just who are we to judge others? 

This story just makes me so incredibly sad because there by the Grace of God could walk my family so far, we have been spared.  $296 a month may seem like a lot to others but, from experience with teenagers who constantly eat --- it's not near enough for growing children.  I understand the SNAP card is supplemental assistance meant to augment a meager income. 

Another thing that just pisses in my Cheerios, it pundits much like Mr. Gingrich wishing to abolish federal laws concerning on child labor.  All I can say is: "WHAT AN ASS."   How the heck are children who have enough trouble in their homes getting their nutritional needs met to concentrate on their studies; let alone be put to work as janitors, library aides, or crossing guards? 

This makes the assumption that said children have no working parents at home. 

I am sick to death of listening to others make harsh judgements on families they do not know.  Just perhaps, if we take that mirror and look at ourselves with the same critical eye --- we may just be shocked. 

-- Not everyone knows how to budget; a skill that has not been taught to the masses.
-- Not everyone has access to lawyers to explain credit applications.
-- Not many know how to plan meals and work with sales or coupons & rebates, or stockpiling when able.
-- Not everyone has access to free banking with over draft protection (those with large accts.)
-- Not everyone has low interest rate home loans.
-- Everyone does not have a reliable mode of transportation.
-- Not everyone has cadillac health insurance provided for them.
-- Not everyone has been lucky to have an education.

Let me tell you gentle reader; I am sick and tired of Republicans wanting to take away from government employees as well.  I will tell you all about my own income. 

When I joined the Air Force in 1986, I earned a total of $5,111 for ten months of active duty.  Upon my last year, I earned a whopping total of $34,898 after 20 years of honorable service to my country.  Granted, I lived on base in Maryland and got approximately $300 a month for food allowance, and had access to 24-hr medical care. We as a family was so fortunate (lucky lotto-winners) to have a second income from hubby's job. 

All that went away upon my retirement with the exception of 1/2 of my active duty pay under $1,200 a month when adding our insurances for health and life.  My hubby was lucky to find a job with the Army; we watch our spending throughout the year.  We save a little each month to cover holiday gifts and emergencies.  However, the retirement system my husband is enrolled in will not give him a retirement check --- those went away in the 1980s.  We will only have Social Security and my retirement check.  We are the lucky ones....................

So far, with this economy we are waiting for the other shoe to fall to wipe out our cushion. On this day as we remember those who scarificed during the attack on Pearl Harbor.  Please keep in mind those who are scarificing just to make ends meet.


Aimee said...

Amen sister!

Greg said...

Great post, well said

KareemUpInThemGuts said...
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kysch said...
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Jen said...

You've said it. So many people are blind to the hardships of others and only have judgements towards them. WE live in a broken society with a broken government. I like you have much to be greatful for and take nothing for granted while preparing for the next shoe to drop.

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John Gray said...

well said that woman..... a belaed happy chirstmas to you too x

moonqueenfashions said...

Okay, so I do agree with most of your post. I have two questions. 1) Do you consider people who spend aggregiously without consideration of what they are doing not at fault for their own poverty (i.e. people who run up massive credit card debt on non-essentials, buy a house way bigger than they need in an area they really can't afford, have to have a new car, won't buy used or generic anything, etc)? 2) Were you really complaining about making almost $40k with free housing, $300 a month for food and free medical care..PLUS a second income? Those benefits, based on what I pay for a house payment, utilities and health insurance (alone I might add), would equal almost $14,000 a year. That's a low estimate as I live very frugally, have a low house payment and only pay for one person for medical care (i.e. the benefits you are actually receiving for a family in that area may total to even more than $14k). Which brings your salary to nearly $60k or over. Some career teachers don't make that and they have to have one or two college degrees depending on the state. I have two college degrees and would never make that at my current job without becoming management or working here for 15 to 20 years. So yah, consider the less fortunate indeed. My parents fed, clothed, and housed two kids and themselves on less than $25k a year and we always had a car, tv etc. It's all in how much you are willing to live smart with what you have. I'm not saying there aren't a lot of unforutnate people, particularly people who become poor through forced unemployment or long-term illness, but there are a lot more that think they deserve to live outside of their means. Just because people on the tube have fur and diamonds, drive fancy cars, etc doesn't mean we are suffering if we don't have that life. At some point people forgot about the basics of getting by and started worrying about keeping up with the Jones.