Here is how one 21-year-old Texas woman reportedly thinks we should solve poverty in America:
Give welfare recipients 50 lb. bags of rice and beans, bulk cheese and powdered milk instead of food stamps.
Conditions of Medicaid: Forced sterilization, mandatory drug testing.
Housing for the poor: Military barracks, subject to random inspections, must prove employment or join work brigades.
Disenfranchisement for the unemployed.
I really wish I was kidding. I’m sure this fascist nightmare scenario doesn’t represent the views of everyone in Texas, but enough of the population to be an utter disgrace. For full details, and more than you ever wanted to know about how republicans really think, read the forwarded email below:
Subject: Fw: WRITTEN BY A 21 YEAR OLD FEMALE FROM TEXAS !!
Wow, this girl has a great plan! Love the last thing she would do, the best.
This was written by a 21 yr old female who gets it. It’s her future she’s worried about and this is how she feels about the social welfare big government state that she’s being forced to live in! These solutions are just common sense in her opinion.
This was in the Waco Tribune Herald, Waco, TX, Nov 18, 2011
PUT ME IN CHARGE . . .
Put me in charge of food stamps. I’d get rid of Lone Star cards; no cash for Ding Dongs or Ho Ho’s, just money for 50-pound bags of rice and beans, blocks of cheese and all the powdered milk you can haul away. If you want steak and frozen pizza, then get a job.
Put me in charge of Medicaid. The first thing I’d do is to get women Norplant birth control implants or tubal legations. Then, we’ll test recipients for drugs, alcohol, and nicotine. If you want to reproduce or use drugs, alcohol, or smoke, then get a job.
Put me in charge of government housing. Ever live in a military barracks?
You will maintain our property in a clean and good state of repair. Your home” will be subject to inspections anytime and possessions will be inventoried. If you want a plasma TV or Xbox 360, then get a job and your own place.
In addition, you will either present a check stub from a job each week or you will report to a “government” job. It may be cleaning the roadways of trash, painting and repairing public housing, whatever we find for you. We will sell your 22 inch rims and low profile tires and your blasting stereo and speakers and put that money toward the “common good..”
Before you write that I’ve violated someone’s rights, realize that all of the above is voluntary. If you want our money, accept our rules. Before you say that this would be “demeaning” and ruin their “self esteem,” consider that it wasn’t that long ago that taking someone else’s money for doing absolutely nothing was demeaning and lowered self esteem.
If we are expected to pay for other people’s mistakes we should at least attempt to make them learn from their bad choices. The current system rewards them for continuing to make bad choices.
AND While you are on Gov’t subsistence, you no longer can VOTE! Yes, that is correct. For you to vote would be a conflict of interest. You will voluntarily remove yourself from voting while you are receiving a Gov’t welfare check. If you want to vote, then get a job.
So, let’s review. This supposed “conservative” is advocating selling poor people’s property, to put the money toward the “common good.” There’s a name for that…I’m thinking…it’s coming to me now…Socialism!
But this isn’t any sort of democratic socialism. This is “Work for whatever poverty wages you can wrangle out of Walmart or other corporation. If you can’t get a job and don’t want to starve, we’ll round you up, sterilize you, put you in military camps, feed you prison food, and sell your stuff” socialism.
It’s not like anyone would expect to find sophisticated political philosophy in a forwarded chain email, supposedly published in a Texas newspaper. But what this does provide, is a window into the conservative psyche. It’s bad enough that such people have such lowly aspirations for the “greatest country on Earth” that they’d want their fellow citizens treated like common criminals. But what’s really telling, is that they’d take away someone’s vote, simply for being unemployed. This comes right out of hard-right Koch-founded libertarian think tanks like Americans for Prosperity, who’ve long objected to the idea of democratic citizens being able to vote to tax the wealthy in order to provide benefits to the poor. They consider it a conflict of interest, rather than democracy. Twisted, I know.
But there’s something else: In the conservative psyche, a person in poverty is automatically assumed to be a person of color. And when you look at this email through that lens, it’s just the same old Confederacy, looking to extend slavery through the private for-profit prison system–because that’s who’d be running these “barracks,” right? Because whenever you read about a policy that punishes the poor, there’s always an angle for funneling even more money to the already wealthy.
The forced sterilization hearkens back to the dark days of Eugenics and Buck v. Bell, one of the worst Supreme Court decisions in American history. History it’s clear the writer of this letter doesn’t know.
But what’s most appalling, is the ease with which supposedly freedom-loving Americans can be convinced to sign on to blatantly fascist policies toward people they don’t consider to be worthy of citizenship. And forward emails like this to their friends and family without a single ounce of shame.