The Food Stamp Challenge!

Australia
May 21, 2007 11:25pm CST
Apparently Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan is trying to survive a week on the $21 average meal that someone who was living on food stamps will get. I think he really felt the burn when TSA nabbed his PB&J sandwiches at the airport and all he was left with was cornmeal. I think it's rather noble that he tried it when so many others wouldn't. Maybe it will influence him to fight for the plight of the hungry. What do you think? http://timryan.house.gov if you want to see more details.
10 people like this
11 responses
@herrbaggs (1308)
• United States
22 May 07
If your talking about the plight of the hungry in the USA you must working up a routine for comedy central. The only people in the US who are hungry are on a diet.
4 people like this
• Australia
22 May 07
There are hungry Americans. If you have a minimum wage job and suddenly lose it you'd be surprised how fast you get into financial trouble. If you grow up poor and live poor and become too old or too sick to work you also end up in that situation. Some people are also out there battling it out on low/minimum wage to feed a couple of children and get little or no support because they "make too much" If I stayed in the US as a single person I would have been in a lot of trouble because even if I did have a job on minimum wage I would have to wait for a year for insurance because of a pre-existing condition, wouldn't be eligible for food stamps and would have at least an extra $150-200 bill a month for medication. It's not as far fetched as it may sound to someone sitting behind a computer.
2 people like this
@herrbaggs (1308)
• United States
22 May 07
Horsehockey, I have been on food stamps have you? I was a rent collector for eight years for a man who owned 2 thousand apartments, a lot of these so called hungry people paid thier rent with food stamps, 35 cents on the dollar. To listen to them they had all kinds of problems. Thier biggest problem was where to park thier new cars and not have them stolen. An education is free for the taking in this country, those who find it to much trouble end up the biggest whinners. I walked on two crutches for nearly a year and still managed to feed and shelter my self. Anybody who will put out the effort in this country can have a decent life. I have no compassion for self made losers.
2 people like this
• United States
22 May 07
herrbaggs, you are talking out your behind because your mouth doesn't know any better. There are families still to this day living in one room shanties, not electric or plumbing, barefoot and dirty. Yes, here in the land of the free, there are still people doing without...not to mention the countless homeless sleeping in the streets because all the missions are full. You don't have a clue.
1 person likes this
22 May 07
I think it's a great idea. A congressman will hopefully bring a lot of attention to the issue as that really isn't enough to live on. Here in the UK i think the amount you get a week is a bit higher. When Secret Millionaire was on millionaires had to live in particularly deprived areas and figure out who really needed their money. Anything like that is a really great idea.
3 people like this
• Australia
22 May 07
I hope that even the people that wouldn't participate will take into consideration what he had to deal with, not to mention how much coffee would cut into a poor person's food budget! (I found that a little amusing) I wish they'd all been REQUIRED to do it though. Oh, and Secret Millionaire sounds awesome.
2 people like this
@lightningMD (5932)
• United States
22 May 07
I think it is great that these 4 people did the challenge. I agree that the amount of food stamps should be raised. I also think the income levels should be raised to help out more of the working poor. With prices rising and incomes staying level it is harder every week to buy groceries,pay bills and keep gas in the car.i really felt bad that they confiscated his sandwich.
• Australia
22 May 07
I feel bad that they stole his sandwich too, but it did give him insight into what it would be like if someone's food went bad or something if they'd had to plan around a $21 budget.
1 person likes this
@kelly60 (4548)
• United States
22 May 07
I think that it is great that he will put himself through this test. I wish that some of these people who make these laws would be forced to go through these tests before they could impose them on people, just to see whether or not they could manage to live by their own rules.
• Australia
22 May 07
Only 4 people even bothered to "take the challenge". I haven't found out who the other 3 are, but I think they will see what poor people go through and it will make a difference in the rest of their lives.
2 people like this
@mfpsassy (2827)
• United States
23 May 07
Oregon's govener did it. He pretty much lived an PB&J too
1 person likes this
• United States
22 May 07
I must say that I'm really impressed with this. You are right, most politicians would not take the time to step into someone else's shoes. In his latest blog he says that no one has raised the food stamps with todays increasing prices. It's really sad when I hear stories about kids not having enough to eat. $21 a week is ridiculous. Most people eat more than $21 a day in the US.
2 people like this
• Australia
22 May 07
A lot of people bring up the topic of free school food for children that can't afford to pay. That's all well and good, but if a family is too poor to feed their children, what are they getting at home between 3pm and 7 am the next day and in the summer? Some people need help. Even if it is heir fault their children shouldn't have to suffer.
1 person likes this
@disvachic (10121)
• United States
22 May 07
In my opinion they needed to take the challenge to see what its like.Now $21 for one person thats only $84 a month.They definitely need to raise that.I thought it was more than that for a single person.They also need to raise the minimum wage for some states.The cost of living is so expensive and people can barely take care of their families.
2 people like this
• Australia
22 May 07
Yeah that's nothing. Especially if you are trying to take care of yourself and eat good foods that boost your immune system which I believe everyone has a right to. Even $10 a week more would help people work more vegetables, fruit and meat/protein into their diet. I hope this guy can get the ball rolling on increasing food stamps. Oh, and I know ALL about minimum wage. Even in a town with a relatively low cost of living you rarely have enough.
1 person likes this
• United States
23 May 07
I wish more political figures would give this a try. They should try to live off TANF too! See what that it like. Perhaps live in government subsidized housing - preferably in a urban area. Maybe trying being homeless for a week or two (even one night in the streets). Try to get health care at a free clinic or county hospital without insurance or money to pay for it, or live off minimum wage for a month. Hard lessons to learn - but if they could see how hard it is for many people to survive - perhaps change will happen.
@emeraldisle (13145)
• United States
23 May 07
The link wouldn't work for me but I think over all this is great to see happen. I do agree with the other poster it would be nice to have him see what it's like for the average person for a bit longer then a few days. I think though it's a great start and I wish more would do it. Here in Florida the system is really lousy. The food stamps is set by the Federal government but the Cash assistance is set by the state and Florida gives very little. I'd love to see a Congressman live on what they give for a couple of months and see how they do.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 May 07
I think that it is great that someone in power is finally noticing the little people and how hard life can actually be. I do receive a very little monthly foodstamp income so I know how hard it is. We have 6 people in our house and 3 of them are disabled including my husband. I cannot find work outside of the home because he is unable to care for the children by himself for long periods of time. Our foodstamp allotment is $5 per person per week. I spend about $200 a month in cash to suppliment and there are many times that I actually go to bed hungry just to make sure my children have enough to eat. Not exactly the best thing for me to do with my diabetes what there is nothing else I can do, my children have to come first. I am not complaining, I am thankful for the help I do receive. I realize there are free-loader out there but most people do work, they do not depend on public aid to totally support them. Oklahoma still has a min. wage of $5.15 an hour, with gas prices the way they are it makes it even more difficult, not to mention the fact that if you have children you have to pay daycare costs. So basically a working family with young children would be spending about $500 out of $800 a month for just those two things. So I hope that this little experiment that this Congressman is doing will help the people that really need it.
1 person likes this
@4cuteboys (4102)
• United States
22 May 07
GOOD! I like to hear about stuff like that. Wow, 21 a week?! That is way too low. I can't imagine how they expect a person to eat that little :( This should be eye opening. I do feel bad they snatched his food though..lol
1 person likes this
@hcromer (2712)
• United States
19 Jun 07
I agree with you. It is very noble of him to take on such a challenge. For someone with money to put it out of the way and try to spend even one day in the shoes of people who don't have anything is nice.