The Montana TEA Party legislator stated in a Wisconsin newspaper this week that we shouldn’t be helping needy kids who don’t get school lunch because school is out–in spite of the increase in hungry kids seeking food in the last five years.
As the Green Bay Press Gazette reports:
But some, like Montana legislator Tom Burnett, think the numbers are inflated. He argues that the spike in summer food program growth comes from a “relaxing of restrictions” that is allowing students of any income bracket to receive a free lunch.“One of my daughters went to a park with her friend where food was served, and the friend ran up and got a free lunch no problem,” said Burnett, a Republican
Burnett’s statement to a Wisconsin paper makes it clear that he appears to be the one person in the U.S. willing speak out publicly against feeding hungry kids. Apparently no one in Wisconsin was willing to sign their name to such a ludicrous statement.
Perhaps he believes that a team of bureaucrats at summer food sites and making kids carry around their parents proof of income statements is what is called for. Maybe the kids of low-income people should be tattooed with a mark so that we can make sure no friend of a poor child gets a baggie of carrots and a turkey sandwich. Perhaps he doesn’t understand that the cost of creating such a system is astronomical compared to a few pieces of bread that were shared with a friend or dropped on accident.
Burnett has penned bizarre 53-page treatise in favor of massive federal food police bureaucracy to crack down on the poor to stop them from getting food that Burnett feels they don’t deserve. In “Hunger in America: The Myth [word doc].” Burnett writes that hunger doesn’t exist because he hasn’t seen it:
No advocates parade a line of emaciated children at any school or playground. They just can’t be found.
But that’s not the only reason Representative Burnett has come to the conclusion that no one is really going hungry. He also bases his case on…wait for it…pictures of fat people he found on the Internet (see right), which he includes in his article as “evidence.”
In addition to claiming that hunger doesn’t exist. He also sanely tells us that not being hungry “kills,”
Hunger is a normal part of a healthy person’s day. One should expect to be hungry six hours per day, the two hours preceding each meal. Satiety kills.
Those in need, says Burnett are characterized by “Indolence. Shirking responsibility. Indulgence. Enabled laziness.”
They don’t budget or plan. Lack of foresight is common in this population. They don’t restrain their impulses, one of the definitions of management problems. They don’t discipline themselves to stay in school, to turn in their homework, to get out of bed on time, to study when they’d rather watch movies.
Republicans in Congress and the Montana Legislature have made several recent attempts slash the budget for help for hungry kids.