Food Stamps: Requiring ID is the Least we Can Demand

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I was talking to a friend recently. Having recently retired from a career in the supermarket industry, she had plenty of experience with the degenerates who abuse food stamps. According to her, it was not uncommon to see people attempt to use food stamps to buy fresh cakes from the bakery, cigarettes, and everything else sold in your average grocery store. She told of one woman who breezily praised her food stamps as the reason she could afford to spend a fortune on her wedding.

There is a big problem in this country. The social safety net has been transformed into a nice, comfy bed. It used to be that people were ashamed to go on the government dole. Now, it’s a way of life for many. No shame to it at all. And for people who really need it, it should be there. But the moment you start taking money from others, your number one goal in life should be to stop. Unfortunately, a great many people in this country don’t see it that way. They see how much easier it is to cash a welfare check than it is to work for a living, and they abandon any sense of pride they might have once had. To hell with it, they say. I’m going to ride this gravy train as far as it goes.

To say that we need to do something about this multigenerational dependence on entitlements is an understatement. But before we even get to the problem of cracking down on legal recipients, we need to get a handle on fraud and abuse. As usual, though, even the thought of taking measures to curb food stamp fraud is met with the spurious rage of the left.

Consider the modest proposal being made by Republicans in the House. They aren’t pushing people off food stamps. They aren’t shaming people who need the helping hand. They are simply proposing that we require photo ID at the register. Appearing on Fox and Friends this week, one of the bill’s co-sponsors said that the requirement was the least we could do to protect the taxpayers.

“I think it’s perfectly appropriate when the taxpayers are losing almost a billion dollars a year to fraud in the SNAP program,” said Rep. Jim Bridenstine of Oklahoma. “I think it’s perfectly appropriate to require a low hurdle like an ID.”

No one ever accused liberals of bowing to measures that were “perfectly appropriate,” though. Speaking to the bill last month, Deborah Weinstein of the Coalition on Human Needs said, “Many poor people do not have photo ID’s, and it costs money they do not have to get them. They will wind up going without food.”

You know, I kinda doubt it. And if that’s the case – if getting an ID, which is one of the easiest things a person can do in the United States, is too much to ask of a person – then maybe it’s time to have a real discussion about what we as a country expect of a fellow citizen. Food stamps, welfare, other entitlements…these aren’t the norm. These aren’t the natural order of things. But they’ve become so entrenched in society, that any discussion of limiting these benefits is labeled an “assault on the poor.”

With feet held to the flames, even President Obama had to admit that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Life is tough. Charities, both public and private, are everywhere you look. Need a helping hand? It’s there. Want to cruise through life letting strangers work hard on your behalf? Sorry, but I have a problem with that. Requiring ID for food stamps should not be the slightest bit controversial. It should be the first small step towards reclaiming this country from the leeches who have ruined it.