When help is abused!

Help

“I need cash maybe 50 bucks,” he said and waived a plastic card in front of me. I had seen the young man before; he lived just a few houses down the street with an older lady.

“I give you my food stamp card and you can go grocery shopping with it and pay me back in cash afterwards,” he said and I really didn’t know what to say.

“What do you need the money for?” I asked, just because I can have some highly stupid moments.

He didn’t answer, just turned around and left. That was the first time he had stopped by my workshop, but it wasn’t the last. He came by once in a while and tried to trade his food stamp money for cash.

“I live with my Mom; she buys the groceries,” he explained. Then why not give her the card I thought, but didn’t say it. I had a hunch and I was right. He was a junkie, couldn’t hold a job, because he was hooked on crystal meth. I know that because I called the cops a few times, when I got tired of watching drug deals going on in our street.

He is not the only one. Each and every time I look for a helper I place an ad in local newspaper or online. I get numerous calls; many are looking for a part time job.

“I am on disability, you need to pay me under the table,” I can’t even count how many times I have heard the same sentence…over and over. Just the form of government help seems to vary, the rest is just standard.

“I don’t want to lose that money,” that’s a statement I have heard over and over as well and each and every time I feel my blood boiling.

Disability, Food stamps, Well fare and Medicaid, you name it. All of these programs get abused by so many and we do nothing, we just seem to continue paying.

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Really??? 

Don’t get me wrong, I believe in helping people. I believe in all these programs, but I am tired of people who abuse the system in any form and way.

There is a scene in Cinderella Man, when Russell Crowe goes back to the welfare department after he won a fight and he pays the money back that they gave him when he needed it. I love that scene, because it shows character and personality.

Even a good friend of mine, who had a liver transplant last year, decided that he just loves the free money and works now under the radar, “I am trying to stay on it until I retire…I earned it,” he says and I have a hard time biting my tongue. He is so blessed and so fortunate to be in good health again, why does he have to milk the system? And what makes people think they earned it?

It is not up to me to judge people, but I wish there would be one politician –just one- who would finally stand up and declare that we need to look into it. He or she would get my vote that’s for sure.

I feel like we are giving out money left and right and quite often overlook the ones that really need it.

I would have lost my job, if I would have failed a drug test and I knew it. I understood it and accepted it and now I have the same principle in my workroom. My workroom is an alcohol and drug free work environment. My shop – my rules, if one can’t live with it…well, that’s too bad.

Why do we give drug addicts food stamp money? “They would steal if they wouldn’t get the money,” someone once explained to me.

Hello, newsflash…they steal anyway!

I wish we would help the ones that need help, like the older people who are too proud to ask for help and suffer summer after summer without A/C; or the single Mom who works three jobs, because she never saw a dime of child support. Many are falling through the cracks!

I am tired of the way we help, if I may say so.

And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.

— John F. Kennedy, inauguration address, January 1961.

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31 thoughts on “When help is abused!

  1. Well said! And people like that have been doing it awhile because it takes time to learn how to work the system. When Drollery was out of work just after we adopted Stef, we couldn’t even get food stamps. They said he made too much on unemployment and wanted us to sell our car first. How does THAT work when you’ve got to get to job interviews? Yet I saw people at the store using food stamps whom I knew darn well didn’t need them, and you can bet your sweet bippy they were driving cars. So I really get where you’re coming from.

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  2. One of the biggest problems all over the world, it seems…
    Sometimes I give my money to people who convince me they’re hungry….
    I know they might be liars but what if they are really telling the truth?
    So difficult to deal with the matter….

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I would have thought the US hardly to be the country where welfare thrives. It’s incarceration rates are one of the highest in the world. ( Higher even than in the former Russian federation) Go to countries where equality and sharing of wealth is more established ( Scandinavia and most European countries) and you find the rates of imprisonment much, much lower. Sure, people take advantage of welfare but are much more inclined to abuse and go into crime when living in a society where the rich get richer and poor poorer ,without hope of change or societal empathy.
    Aren’t we lucky we can work and earn money and should we not pity those that end up the dregs of society and help them instead of berating them?
    In Australia youth unemployment is close to 20%. The unemployment relief money is, like it is in the US, far too little to live from., They lose all hope, end up in crime and sleeping rough. Yet the rich have billions and getting richer. The inequality is staggering and getting worse…

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  4. I’m trying not to get into a full boil about this subject. If someone truly needs help, I’m all for it. But if you’re able-bodied you shouldn’t be sitting around waiting for money that someone else has earned. An addiction is not a disability. It’s a choice that someone made for themselves that could’ve been avoided. This country (USA) rewards bad behavior and even glorifies it on TV. It’s a huge problem.

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  5. I have no respect for thieves and liars and those that use and abuse. These are the problems of the world, the one’s that have no love in their empty hearts. They don’t know how to be grateful or thankful for a thing or they wouldn’t be able to play games like this.

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  6. I’ve lived in poverty most of my life, and for every person that milks the system, there are tens of people who are working hard *on* the system. People with jobs who are barely making it, even with food stamps and welfare. I know, I was one of them… Most years, despite working two or three jobs, I hardly made enough to file a tax return. I only ever qualified for food stamps, and usually that was a month to month journey for me. The ones who milk the system are simply the ones people pay attention to, because they’re the ones making the most noise. Squeaky wheel and all of that.

    The liquor store that takes food stamps? I worked in a store like that. It’s for snacks… food. Not liquor, not cigarettes. That’s illegal, and my boss might have been shady, but he stayed legal — well until he put a bullet in some guy’s head for stealing beer and went to jail, but that’s a different story. ^_^ But we didn’t take food stamps for anything but food.

    I also have to take umbrage with the idea that poor people don’t deserve luxuries. Things like tattoos, beer, manicures, &c. Beer is cheap, and not everyone who drinks beer is an alcoholic… some impoverished people work damn hard for their money and still can’t make ends meet. They have as much right as middle class people to throw back a brewski or two to escape the harsh realities of the really real world. — Just so’s you know, I don’t drink. And I hate beer. But I understand the need to escape. I had a nice computer and internet when I was poor. Shame on me. If the rent and utilities are paid for the month and there’s money left over, why not indulge? Poor people are human too. They like their niceties as much as the next person. My indulgences happened to be books and computers… I had a library to rival any upper crust, but anyone who didn’t live my life would have chided me and told me to “spend that money on better things…”

    Have you ever read the Cracked.com articles about being poor by John Cheese? They kind of hit it on the head.

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    • I disagree with everything you said to 100%, mainly because I believe in hard work, although I am sorry, but snacks are not food.
      You said you have a degree in language art? Hard to believe that you couldn’t find a good paying job.

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      • And I did work hard. I worked three jobs sometimes THREE jobs to pay the rent. But I was always dancing on the edge of poverty and when dealing with my bipolar and other health issues… it wasn’t easy. But no one can say that I didn’t work… I did. I worked. A lot. But you can only take what people will pay, and you can only work where you can find it. It’s not like you can walk into the office of your dreams and say, “Here I am, pay me.”

        People say, “Get a job.” like jobs are out there for the taking. I was out of work once for six months. For four months I put out several resumes a day. I went on every interview that presented itself – well dressed and freshly bathed with my resume — I know how to interview. I worked with five temp companies. I put in applications at fast food restaurants and retail stores. It got so bad that I went manic and couldn’t</b? work because… well… mania. I did eventually land a job — two actually — but those six months were pretty bad. It's not as simple as "getting a job." They're not being handed out like flyers on the street.

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  7. It is the few that abuse the system that give a bad name to the many who do not – they really need the help. I get angry at these abusers too because they fuel the comments of the conservative politicians who point out the abuses as evidence of failure of the system, and that the best thing would be to privatize Social Security, etc.

    Drug addicts, though, they are sick people – meaning they have the “disease” of addiction. Many of them are people who, if they didn’t have an addiction, would be perfectly nice people with good morals. But unfortunately, their addiction makes them lie and steal to satisfy their urge to use. What they need is help – rehab, 12-step groups, etc. but most effective would be to legalize drugs so they wouldn’t have to lie or steal. Many countries have done this with great success in reducing the problem of addiction.

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  8. it annoys the heck out of me that I can not qualify for assistance (I just want a little bit of help getting my meds) because two heart attacks, a stroke and diabetes don’t count as any form of disability. I am in my golden years and have applied for jobs (gee, i am too old, too experienced, too in need of a job) for me to be hired anywhere including the fast food industry! grrrrrrrr. …BUT, the kid (he’s 30) next door is on disability for his “drug addiction”..they pay his rent, his electric and water, give him food stamps, medicaid and free rx drugs…and he is still high as a kite!

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  9. Different countries, different tricks. Here you meet someone standing outside the local railway station. He approaches you and asks if you have change to pay for a bed for the night, although I do not think that is what they need the money for.

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    • We go to McDonald’s and buy gift cards for $5 or $10.
      I often give it to homeless people, this way I know they can get something to eat. Surprisingly many really go there to eat. I never give money -not any more. Only to the ones that work for it, like the young boy who shovels my driveway.

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