By Rebecca DiFede – The welfare program was initially established to help people and families who were struggling with their financial situation and needed a little sustenance from the government to help them get back on their feet. This typically included people in lower socio-economic classes, and people who had abruptly lost their jobs and needed to sustain their quality of life while they searched for another. However recently, the food stamps program gained a new definition of an eligible patron: the average frat guy.
On Monday Michigan threw 30,000 college students off of its food stamps program in an effort to combat the rampant abuse of the system. Although some of those enrolled were using it for its intended purpose, that wasn’t all they were buying.
College students were using their government funded debit cards to buy not just milk and cheese, but beer and cigarettes, hardly the “necessities” the program was established to provide. One student on his blog Viceland commented about how he never realized he could qualify for food stamps until he witnessed his friend buy beer and a bag of chewing tobacco with his food stamps card, prompting him (and presumably other students) to do the same. He talked about “munching on some federally-compensated Dipsy Doodles” and then going out to see just how much beer he could purchase with his EBT card (because, you know, who would ever spend food stamps on food?)
According to an article in the Daily Caller, some colleges even feature pages on their websites telling students what it takes to qualify for food stamps, and encouraging them to apply. One story in the school paper at Grand View University in Iowa talked about how college students applied for food stamps to supplement their income because they didn’t have time to have a steady job on top of their studies. This school with annual tuition costing more than $19,000, pushes students who hadn’t considered the program, an officially sanctioned excuse to jump on the (very expensive, tax payer funded) bandwagon.
This emphasis on taking advantage of a government program that is designed to help people living below the poverty line is appalling to say the least. Just because college students work at minimum wage, part-time jobs, that does not make them impoverished.
First of all, the sheer fact that they are in college seems to disprove that fact because unless they got a full academic scholarship or a boat-load of financial aid they, or rather their parents, have at least enough money to support them. Not to mention, the countless kids that run amuck on college campuses every day with not only their own credit card, but mommy and daddy’s too.
These kids are not starving on the street, they aren’t fighting to survive, they are just lazy, plain and simple. They discovered a way to play the system, and they intend to milk it for all its worth.
Michigan was right to remove the unnecessary leeches from the bloodstream of the American tax payers, and the rest of the country should follow suit. Giving food stamps and government assistance to college students to abuse is just another example of how welfare has perverted our system to not only increase spending, but increase the size of government until the entire nation is just one giant party, sponsored by the American taxpayer.
Rebecca DiFede is a contributing editor to Americans for Limited Government.