18h UTC; TUESDAY, 17 SEPTEMBER 2013: For such among you as still insist that the poor are no better than "scum", "degenerates", "social parasites" and suchlike as Threaten Our National Character and Identity as a Sovereign Peculiar Among the Nations, especially so from the standpoint of a supposed "natural interconnexion" between Our National and Sovereign Identity and ekonomesie vryheid met Amerikaanse eienskappe such as is seen to be The Fountainhead of All Industry, All Enterprise, All Wealth, All Prosperity, in Ayn Rand-stylee Delusions of Grandeur, please allow me to bring unto your Notice and Attention the following Op-Ed as appeared originally in the Star Tribune out of Minneapolis, and has since taken on a life of its own thanks to Teh Innerwebz making same viral, and then some--and written by an actual client on SNAP (f/k/a Food Stamps) who was sick and tired of being berated and put down by a supposed "REAL AmeriKKKan" whose Weltanschauung seems to come from conservative prolefeeders such as Fox News Channel:
To the irritated lady at the Cub Foods, I should have told you to your face that you were being presumptuous.

This is an apology to the lady behind me in line at Cub Foods in Edina on a recent Sunday night. This is also a reminder to me and to others who have ever slipped into believing that we are just a little better than others we encounter.

We were at the checkout, and just as the cashier started ringing me up, I saw you come to the line with a small order in your basket. My first apology is that I could not let you go ahead of me, but the checkout process had already begun.

My second apology was for pulling out my pile of discount coupons for the order, and especially when one required the manager’s assistance. I know I was holding you up.

And then I swiped my payment method and you lost your patience. It was EBT — “food stamps.”

I did not observe you, but my daughter was with me packing the groceries and saw it all: “EBT: Yeah, right,” you muttered, with that look of disgust that would have shattered someone feeling just a little bit of shame over needing food stamps.

As we walked to the car, my daughter told me what had happened, and I sensed her resolve about having made the right decision to work for social justice as she starts her senior year in a social-work program.

We talked about you all the way to the car, and about how sorry we felt for people who were judged because they depended on support from others. But my real apology is that I did not make eye contact with you and get out of the car to talk with you as you got into your car right next to mine.

Instead, I did what many people would do: I felt ashamed and humiliated and angry about your ignorance.

If I’d had the guts to talk with you, I would have told you about my disabled 28-year-old son living with us. We have never asked for public support for him.

But recently we have decided that it is our responsibility to introduce him to the programs that will have to support him when we are no longer here to care for him. We started small: He is eligible for food support, and he agreed to receive it to be able to feel that he is contributing his share to the food bill, since he is unable to work.

I know we looked like people you might think need EBT: a bit unkempt in sweatpants and T-shirts. If I’d had the guts to talk to you, I would have told you that I’d just had an emergency surgery and that my daughter came home from college five hours away to help for the weekend because my husband had scheduled surgery two days after mine. I haven’t been able to put on real clothes yet, and I can’t lift a bag of groceries.

I thought I could handle your disdain, since I am a professional working at a local corporation where I am surrounded every day by people who respect me and care about me. But it still made me feel a little dirty — unworthy — and I still went home and cried in the privacy of my shower so my family would not know I was hurt by you.

I am sorry I did not tell you all of this in person. What my daughter and I resolved is that we will never let my son (her brother) go to the store alone with his Electronic Benefits Transfer card and be subjected to this humiliation.

We all have our stories, and no one is any better than another. Everyone deserves the respect they want for themselves, even if they use an EBT card to pay for their groceries.
And before too long, readers, expect these same conservative prolefeeders to question the authenticity and credibility of this op-ed, and the claims and representations therein made--and Snopes.com being called in to sort wheat from chaff, as it were.

Let this, then, be a reminder to those among us who belittle the poor and those dependent upon charity as some class of a Threat to Thy Dear and Lovely Land to knock it off for once, and start thinking about the less-fortunate among us who are unable to work or look after themselves for reasons not of their own making. Your cheap platitudes and bromides about "a people rescuing itself," expecting such to be done solely by their own motivation, tools and resources (in other words, by appealing solely to National Unity and Identity), can only go so far.

In the immortal words of the late John Cameron Swayze
as closed every broadcast of the Camel News Caravan (NBC-TV, 1949-1956),
"That's the story; glad we could get together ..."


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