Sunday, May 04, 2008

I went to Whole Foods today to pick up a couple of things and at the checkout, as usual, I got caught behind the slowest transaction in the store. The guy checking out was a total hippie (big shocker at Whole Foods), and it took me awhile to figure out that the reason the transaction was taking so long was that the guy was paying for his $110 worth of gourmet groceries with food stamps. My first thought was that the $110 could have gone much further somewhere like Vons, and I assume that if someone is on food stamps, they might want to try to get as much as they can for it. I saw he had a hand truck with him which I didn't understand because he only had two bags of groceries. Then, when I was leaving, I noticed him loading up cases of something onto the truck. I assumed it was bottled water (again...maybe a bit of a luxury if you're on food stamps, but who am I to say) but then noticed it was Italian sparkling water - two cases of it.

Since I'm a lifelong Democrat, of course I don't have a problem with social services like unemployment insurance and food stamps. But I thought the whole point of things like food stamps was so that you could get help so your family didn't go hungry...not so they could drink Italian sparkling water made by a company that doesn't employ child workers or whatever. I'm not saying people on public assistance shouldn't be allowed some small luxuries in life, but jeez...come on.

8 Comments:

Blogger Auburn Kat said...

I totally agree with you! Programs like food stamps are great but I hate when people take advantage of them!

5:53 PM  
Blogger Diane said...

Ah, you don't know what his story is . . .

Don't be so quick to judge.

6:51 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

I used to work at a grocery store- little one. People would come in with their food stamps and then get change- like quarters and dimes. They would buy something to get the most amount of change and then use the change to get beer or cigarettes. It made me mad. It really is not an ideal situation. But then healthy food- fresh veggies cost so much more than top ramen. I bet your sister has all kinds of stories.

10:26 PM  
Blogger Ryan said...

People who use food stamps should not be able to use them on luxury goods. I understand government assistant programs, they are good, but people abuse them system.

Diane - Judging is my favorite pastime...

7:37 AM  
Blogger Kelly J. Compeau said...

Speaking as someone who was on gov't assistance for 7 years, sprinkled with bouts of homelessness, going to food banks and eating out of garbage dumpsters behind McDonalds for a while, I do find that money/food stamps would best be spent on meat, dairy and produce rather than bottled water, which is a sham, whether you're paying 80 cents for it at the grocery store, or $7 at a high-end restaurant.

8:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point Diane. Just like you don't judge all Republicans.

9:24 AM  
Blogger Ryan said...

Diane - Looks like you have a secret admirer. HAHA

11:16 PM  
Blogger Diane said...

anon - i don't judge all republicans - just the mean spirited, petty ball less ones

6:11 AM  

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