Once upon a time, America was inhabited by hard-working, proud, legal immigrants, grateful for a place to thrive and raise their families without fear of oppression for political, religious, or ethnic reasons. New from the war ravaged European nations or nations undergoing harshly difficult times, these new Americans were eager to become part of the ideal for which America stood: … land of the free and the home of the brave!
They brought with them their skills and talents and employed them with great zeal to prove their gratitude to the new nation founded on principles of personal liberty, the likes of which none had experienced previously. Naturally, they settled in neighborhoods that took on the characteristics of their homeland culture: the Italians, the Irish, the German, the Slavic, the Mexican, the Puerto Rican, and so on. This was not so much built on a fear or hatred of others as it was a comfortable familiarity with those from similar backgrounds. But, human nature being what it is, fear and hatred grew and wove its ugliness in, around and through our neighborhoods, and emphasized our differences rather than our similarities.
Gradually, fear and hatred swallowed up the personal pride and deep gratitude shared by our great grandfathers and great grandmothers. Our current society, crying out for entitlements, is the result.
“The total cost of all federal assistance programs — including Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and various welfare programs — accounts for nearly one-half of all money spent by the federal government.”
Nearly one half! Can you wrap your head around those numbers? Of the billions spent by our Federal government, almost HALF is handed out to those unable ? or unwilling ? to work and become self-reliant. Whatever happened to the individual desire for independence, for fulfillment, and accomplishment? Don’t we teach our children to be independent and self-reliant?
So … whatever happened to the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996? Is it working? Are the contingencies being adequately enforced?
“A new law overhauled welfare by replacing AFDC with state-run assistance programs financed by federal grants (TANF- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families). The law also limits lifetime welfare assistance to five years, requires most able-bodied adults to work after two years on welfare, eliminates welfare benefits for legal immigrants who have not become U.S. citizens, and limits food stamps to a period of three months unless the recipients are working.”
Then there are our returning wounded VETS. “Retired Spc. Steve Bohn, who was severely injured in an ambush in Afghanistan three years ago, is sinking deeper into debt every day while he waits for Veterans Affairs officials to process his disability claim.
“I get $699 a month from my retirement pay, and my rent is $700 a month,” the 24-year-old veteran said. “I can’t pay my electric bill. I can’t pay any of my other bills.” (read more … ) There should be no greater priority than the provision of EXCELLENT care (mental & physical) for our active military & veterans.
In our efforts to curtail wasteful spending, let us not include our military heroes and veterans in the number.
1. Keep system as is
2. Throw the whole thing out
3. Enforce the laws on record better
4. Private sector management rather than federal or state government
5. OTHER – Please explain!