Altogether, there are now almost 46 million people in the United States on food stamps, roughly 15 percent of the population. That's an increase of 74 percent since 2007, just before the financial crisis and a deep recession led to mass job losses.
At the same time, the cost doubled to reach $68 billion in 2010 -- more than a third of the amount the U.S. government received in corporate income tax last year -- which means the program has started to attract the attention of some Republican lawmakers looking for ways to cut the nation's budget deficit.
While there are clearly some cases of abuse by people who claim food stamps but don't really need them, for many Americans like Saucedo there is little current alternative if they are to put food on the table while paying rent and utility bills.
Sadly, there are many people that are denied because they make too much to qualify. Then there are those that are insulted by what they get. We applied one time just before the boys were born. Scrappy had been put on bed rest and I wasn't making much. We had two kids and two adults in the house with my sub $10 per hour pay as an electrician. They approved us for $18 a month. Just after that I lost my job and they offered us nearly $500 per month. The system is not designed to help you stay afloat. They want you to hit rock bottom and stay there.
whoops, bad editing there...
I am speaking of the life of a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children; who has undertaken to cherish it and do it no damage, not because he is duty-bound, but because he loves the world and loves his children… - Wendell Berry, 1971